Sunday, December 31, 2006

Some people are kind, polite and sweet-spirited --- until you try to get into their pew.

by teresa

I am sitting in church...beside my hubby.

The pastor is preaching and I am taking notes.

Chris slides a note to me that says this....

Do you smell hiney?

This struck me as so out of the blue and funny that I almost lost it right there in my pew.

I giggled and whispered to him that the lady with a baby just got up in back of us. Maybe the baby had a messy diaper.

He whispers back..."it doesn't smell like smells like hiney."

I ask you....what the heck does hiney smell like if not poopish?

Just when it is quiet again...and I have stopped myself from giggling he slides another note to me.

It says...

It's all hiney-licious in here.

I swear I almost had to leave because I was about to burst holding in my laughter.

For History's Sake

By Chris

Since Lauren grew up without the benefit of this blog . . . and it is sort of turning into the official Green Family Diary, I thought I would capture some things about her younger years that must not be forgotten. She was a real trip as a kid! In fact, she was affectionately dubbed Maniac Kid by one of Teresa's friend, and it has stuck. For a while, "MNIACKD" was Teresa's vanity plate. Teresa will have to add some later.

Bonster Plant
Teresa had this big plant that Lauren, for some unknown reason, absolutely hated when she was a toddler. A rubber tree, I think. I swear, it was like the kid had some type of botanical sibling rivalry with the thing. She called it "Bonster Plant" (Monster Plant, for those not familiar with toddler lingo). And she would have fights with it. Really. Left unattended, she would attack her green, leafy brother, pulling the leaves off and breaking branches, then act all innocent when the evidence was found. I think she eventually killed it. We probably should have thought a little harder about giving her real-life brothers with this history.

You're Not Looking in My Mouth!
I didn't take her to the doctor often, but it sure was an embarrarssing nightmare when I did (heck, taking her anywhere had that potential when she was little). She could turn absolutely obstinate about the most simple request. Usually, it was when the doctor said "open wide . . . " She refused to do it. Every time. You could plead, threaten, plead again, beg, pull your hair out and scream . . . but she would not let a doctor look in her mouth. Some days, they would roll out all the kid doctor tricks on her too. The young kind nurse. The older firm nurse. Stickers. Toys. Nothing worked. And, the doctor and staff would get all snooty and irritated. That drove me crazy! I mean, of all the things a doctor does to you, why in the world would Maniac Kid not let them look in her stinkin mouth!! Many times, we left the doc's office defeated, never getting her to comply with the "open your mouth" request. Being very young parents, it would really freak us out (What's wrong with her? What if something in there needs looking at? We can never face that staff again!) Of course today, with some perspective, we would laugh it off and tell them "live with it, this child ain't opening her mouth for you so get over yourself and stop asking. We'll call you if we see anything funny in there!"

Brother Torture
O.K. This shouldn't surprise us after the plant. But it did. The Maniac's mischievious inner self showed itself early with her first brother, Nick. A couple of examples. Nick, like all kids, would cry about being in his room by himself. You know the drill. There's something in the closet, under the bed, in the wall . . . or whatever. Well, in Nick's case, the fears were real on some nights, thanks to his sister. We once caught her in the closet that ran next to his room, scratching on the wall and making noises! So, of course, he was freaked out that there was something in the wall. We realized, she was probably behind many of the nights when he "heard things," escaping back to her room before we arrived on the sceane. He also was very scared of crickets for a while when he was small. So, one night we opened his door, with him crying, to find crickets, which were apparently pushed under the door, and sitting there looking at him. All Lauren's work.

Up The Carnival Ride
Once, I took Lauren and Nick to one of those mall parking lot carnivals, without Teresa. Nick was pretty little, and not a real dare devil (which shouldn't surprise anyone who knows him). Lauren's a big dare devil maniac who'll ride anything anywhere to get a thrill. So, of course, Nick wouldn't get on anything, and Lauren was irritated about that. Eventually, we talked him into going on one of those big figure 8 slides, where you climb some stairs, then shoot out at the bottom from an enclosed tube. Not much different from something you'd find a an old park, just taller. After much analysis and observation of kids much smaller than him doing it, Nick gave in to Lauren's pleadings. Under one condition: She would stay with him the whole time. I was too big for the kiddie ride. Before they ascended the ladder, I looked at her real stearn and said "Do NOT come down without him!!" So, I waited anxiously at the bottom. Real anxiously. Teresa never would have signed off on such an adventure for her baby boy, and if this went wrong I was facing severe penalties. But, I also was excited to see Nick realizing that things like this are fun and exhilerating (I've since realized, with God's help, that you can't decide what exhilerates and motivates your kids . . . you have to figure out what does and emphasize and accept that it may be a bunch of stuff you don't get yourself, but can embrace!). So, I rolled the dice and trusted the Maniac to come through for me. I waited, and waited. Then . . . out shot Lauren. Solo. No brother. My head went all tinglely scared and mad at the same time. NO NICK! Where's your BROTHER!!!!!?????, I demanded. "He wouldn't come down," she answered, all casual. "What!! You were not supposed to come down without him. Where is he," I fired back. "At the top. He was embarrassing me," she replied, still all calm (she's always calm. Nothing flusters Lauren). Soon enough, the Carny at the top was calling down for someone to fish Nick out of the tube. He had started to slide down, but paralyzed by the fear of being alone without his trusty sister, stopped himself near the top. The only way out was to let go and come down. He wouldn't budge. Someone would have to climb up the tube all backwards and get him! "Climb up there," I told Lauren. "No way," she says. Of course there was a crowd, so I couldn't kill her. And the line was backing up, everyone looking at me. I never ever wear flip flops in public, but today I had. They do not work for slide gripping and climbing, so I flung them off and squeezed in the tube barefooted working my way up to Nick. The Great Freaked Out Kid on the Slide Rescue at Greenbrier Mall episode had drawn a small crowd at this point. By the time I reached him, my shirt was all up on my head and I was tired, sweaty and contorted unnatrually. We slid down together and Lauren . . . . LAUGHED AT US !!%%%&& To salvage the day, and hopefully avoid having Nick tell Teresa on us for stranding him in the slide, I took them to Blockbuster. In the store, Lauren yelled at Nick and snatched somthing out of his hand, freaking him out (he was on edge already of course), causing him to run to the emergency exit door and push it open. Fire alarms blaring, I dropped our movies and dragged them both to the car. In the car, Lauren asks, calmly, "So we're not getting a movie? It's all your fault Nick!" Ugggghhhhhh.

anyone for smores?

by teresa

Great weather here yesterday. Clear skies and chilly (still not winter cold....but sweatshirt weather). Nick went over to George and Jackies to work on some merit badge stuff with George for Royal Ben and Chris went outside to do some basketball drills. The season is only a week away (evaluations are Saturday) and Chris wanted to see what Ben needed to work on. They had a great time....and Ben is naturally skilled. It's sad really. Nick tries and tries and practices and practices at something....and then Ben goes out on his first try and nails it. Are any of your kids like that? Natural athletes? Lauren and Nick were never like that. So we are quite taken aback by Ben. Don't get me's pretty exhilarating for a parent...just foreign to us.

Anyway...we had a good time playing outside. Well... they were playing...I was sitting at the table on my laptop and snapping pictures when they weren't looking. It was so nice out, we decided to grill. So I ran out to the grocery store and picked up some steaks and stuff. When I came back Ben informed me that when him and Dad went to get the grill ready they realized the propane tank was empty. Apparently someone had turned it on and left it. I was so dissappointed. A steak on the grill sounded so good. Today we will go get some propane and maybe grill out tomorrow. It's going to be almost 70 degrees on New Years day....perfect for playing outside and grilling out.
Last night (around 9:30pm) Lauren's friends (six of them) came over to hang out. Chris made them a fire and they sat outside and played basketball and made smores and weiners till after 11:00pm. I'm sure my mom and dad were entertained by their laughing and ball bouncing. Sorry :0)

Tonight we will make our New Years fire (which we have done every year since I was pregnant with Ben). In the beginning it was all about writing down things we would like to change about ourselves. Bad attitudes...sibling rivalry...impatience or nagging... and throwing it in the fire. Now it's about that too....but more about the smores and weiners on a stick. It all comes down to food with this family. :0)

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Stay out of my room!

by teresa

Lauren came down from her room mad this morning. Apparently she went to sit at her vanity and put on makeup....but someone had taken her new lipgloss and written on her vanity seat. And it wasn't just scribbling. They had written N I C K in lipgloss across the seat. "It's a mess!" , she said. "Those boys need to stay out of my room!" Hmmmm...I thought. Who was it? What little gremlin could have done this without my knowledge. Now I was in her room putting some laundry away yesterday afternoon when she left for work. Nothing had been touched then. Also....Nick was sick in bed (headache) ALL DAY yesterday. And if it was Nick...surely he would be smart enough not to write his name in the lipgloss. Ben...however was upstairs unattended while I was cleaning downstairs. I can't believe that little sneak tried to set his brother up like that. I think I should let Nick decide his punishment...don't you?

There's never a dull moment around here.

The family. We were a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another's desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together. ~Erma Bombeck

Friday, December 29, 2006

If it weren't for the fact that the TV set and the refrigerator are so far apart, some of us wouldn't get any exercise at all

by teresa

I have done NOTHING today.

Well...not exactly nothing...just nothing productive.

We have watched so much tv that my legs have gone numb from lack of use.

Netflix brought us two videos yesterday from our newest passion. Six Feet Under! We are almost done with season one and we are hooked. We already finished all six seasons of Sopranos (which was awesome). So we hope to enjoy this series as much as that.

We also watched Lady in the Water. It was nothing what I expected...but VERY GOOD.
Tonight we are going to watch The WickerMan. It looks scary...and I do love my scary movies.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

A good snapshot stops a moment from running away...

by teresa

Here's a couple of my favorite pictures of the kids. I took them (and about 100 more) to give to the grandparents for gifts this Christmas. I found some pretty leather albums to put them in. Photographs are always a perfect gift.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Green Family Christmas 2006

by teresa

We had a very blessed Christmas.

It was so special (as always) to be surrounded by our family all day.

Everyone was over by 10:00am (except Kristian and Kai who had to visit their Dad's house or awhile). We ate (all day without a break) and laughed and unwrapped gifts and played with the kids toys. It was great.

Ben said a sweet prayer of thanks ...and wished Jesus a Happy Birthday.

The kids recieved many wonderful things from us and the grands (PSP, Nintendo DS, Mint Chocolate verizon phone, Heelys, Clinique makeup, Clothes, giftcards,sleeping bag, etc.). But the hit of the morning was Nick's Guitar Hero Playstation2 game. We ALL wore that thing out! I think Chris and Lauren played it as much as Nick did. They even talked me into trying it out (which they videoed without my knowledge).

The things I like the best were the Best Buddies Club shirts my mom made for the kids. How special! And a really pretty framed sisters poem...with Katy and my picture at ages 14 and 3...and then our resent picture together. I cried when opening it.....thanks momma.

All the boys got Heelys which will be tested out on our backyard basketball court later today. It was pouring rain the kids couldn't do anything but scoot around the livingroom. I will definitely get pictures of them rolling around later.

Hope all of my friends (yes...I'm talking to you) had a memorable day.
Today sit back and relax while the kids play with their new things (I know I will).

Monday, December 25, 2006

Don't forget!

I had a birthday party, most everybody came.

They danced and ate and had a ball
But no one spoke My name.

They gave each other presents, as nice as they could be.

People came from far and near, But no one mentioned Me.

The stores were filled with shoppers,
The restaurants crowded out,

But no one seemed to really know what the party was about.

They talked about a reindeer. I think Rudolph was his name.

Then someone mentioned "Jesus"
And they hung their heads in shame.

You see, it was My birthday.

They didn't even know.

That is why from heaven My heart is grieving so.

I came to earth from heaven on that first Christmas day--
Born in a lowly manger From sin to show the way.

I died one day on Calvary, on a cruel Roman cross

To save a world of sinners From a life of awful loss.

When you next have a party, with presents, friends and tree,

Remember Me, your Savior Whose birth has set you free.

-- Jesus

PS: I am coming again soon.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Deck the hars with bars of hah-ree, fah rah rah rah rah...rah rah rah rah!

by teresa

The boys are asleep. It didn't take long once we got home from dinner and tucked them in. I have everything wrapped and the stockings stuffed and all is set out for the morning. Lauren just got all the stuff she bought everyone out of her trunk and wrapped it. It's so sweet of her to buy things for us with her own money.
We enjoyed our Christmas Eve chinese feast. Nick and I made a promise to only use chopsticks. Chris and Lauren wouldn't participate in our game. It was kind of difficult with the rice....Nick even used them to eat his ice cream. Too funny! Lauren did use them to eat some mac-n-cheese. Chris really enjoyed the crawfish...and Ben got a plate full of frog legs. That boy loves frog legs. ewwww
Here's pictures of our evening out on the town.

Merry Christmas!

It's Christmas Eve

by teresa
I am so excited for tomorrow. It will be so hard to get to sleep tonight.
When the kids were little I was up late bringing out Santas presents from hiding after the kids went to bed. Putting batteries in them...assembling...wrapping...filling stockings. All the while listening for footsteps...and watching for peekers. Now that none of my children believe in Santa it will be a little less stressful.
I finished up all last minute gift buying yesterday at Walgreens , Circuit City and Sams Club.
All the food is bought and I will be up early tomorrow baking and setting things out. I'm usually up first. I shower and get dressed (cause I'm not trying to be in the Christmas morning video looking like I do when I get up in the morning)....then I start cooking and wake the kids and Chris. As soon as the kids open presents the visiting commences. With my mom and dad next door and Chris' parents two blocks over our house is full in a flash. The grandparents are eager to see what the kids got. And then we eat breakfast. Good grief do we eat! And it continues ALL DAY LONG! Katy and the kids come over after they have Christmas at home. Jackie and George hand out their presents and we all open them...and then at night we go next door to moms and open all those presents. She usually makes some incredible dinner and we sit and visit until we all drop from exhaustion.
Last night we all had dinner at Jackie and George's. They made pizza(and Nick helped) and it was super yummy. Meatball pizza, veggie pizza, sausage pizza and pepperoni pizza. All homemade. mmmmm! George took the boys to his parents to setup their dvd payer...lauren went to a Jackie, Chris and I vegged on the couch watching Food Network all evening.
After the kids went to sleep I climbed in bed to read for a minute....which turned into two hours. The book was so good...except one of the main characters dies on the next to the last page. I was so sad. Seriously. I woke Chris up at 12:35am to tell him I had finished the book(it is a sequel to a book him and I read earlier this year...he read it a few weeks ago and has been urging me to finish it) and I started to cry about the death. He just laughed and said "I told you would love the book!"
I can't wait to go to church this morning. The kids in their Christmas best...the Christmas message and beautiful singing. Nick and some other kids are performing infront of church this morning. What a blessing to have such a wonderful church family.
Tonight is our annual Christmas Eve dinner out. Chinese food. EVERY year and I do mean every year we go eat chinese food for Christmas eve dinner. My mouth has been watering for some General Taos chicken and beef and broccoli.
When my Nanny was alive and before she got sick....we used to go to her house on Christmas Eve and eat and exchange gifts. Now we do it all on Christmas day.
What do you guys do on Christmas eve? Any special traditions?
Make sure to take lots of pictures tomorrow and post them when you get a free minute. I would love to feel a part of your celebrating. I will do the same.

Friday, December 22, 2006

by teresa

What a busy week.

I had some funs days...but I'm glad it's over.

Lots of commitments at the kids schools. Meetings, making teacher and office staff gifts, parties, concerts,volunteer days, etc.

A couple of days ago I was lucky enough to go shopping with some of the needy kids from school. A wonderful person donated twenty $100 Target giftcards to the school for kids who were in need. Some office workers, resource teachers and myself were blessed to be able to take the kids shopping. We had a blast (especially the kids) spending all that money. Most of the parents said the kids could buy whatever they wanted...which was nice. One mom showed up and tried to accompany her child on the trip....which was not allowed. She got all mad and then instructed us to NOT let her buy the $50 babydoll she has been whining for! She gave us a list of the girls siblings and said she wanted her to buy for them as well. Nice huh? The girl was all teary and we were not happy. I have had the pleasure of being in this womans company before...and she is always like this with her kids.
After shopping a local restaraunt treated all the kids to lunch. We ate and sang carols (much to my chagrine...I am not one to like singing infront of total strangers while they look at us like...why are these people singing in the middle of a buffet?)

Yesterday I worked Nick's reading room...then headed over to Ben's school for his Christmas party. Some mom sent cupcakes in the brightest neon shades of red, green and yellow. The kids made a total mess. They decorated stockings and did a word search. They also watched the Rudolph movie. Ben came away with three goodybags filled with chocolate and Christmas pencils.

After the party we went straight to Nick's school for his band classes "casual concert". Chris and my mom met us there and Nick was beyond pleased at our appearance. They played so well (seriously good) and we are so proud of Nick.

Now it's Friday morning....the kids are off until January 2nd. Of course they were both up by 7:00am this morning (habit I guess). Lauren had some friends spend the night last I am trying to keep them quiet so they don't feel sissy's wrath. Later I think we are going to take some pictures with Katy's kids (Christmas gifts) and then go to karate. I still have a smidge of shopping to do too.

Before I go I wanted to show you what Ben did to the dog. I noticed something on Shorty's collar the other day and I couldn't figured out what it was. I corraled him and saw it was a pedometer. Ben had attached it under Short's collar. I don't know how long it had been there...but it had registered over 15,000 steps. You go Shorty!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Rudolph gives the other reindeer antler envy

by teresa

Ben was eager to show me the picture he drew in art class yesterday.

He was so proud of it that he even let me take his picture.

He said...

It's a drawing of Santa (in his sleigh) and the reindeer pulling it.

They are flying through the stars on Christmas night.

He is saying...Ho Ho Ho Merry Christmas.

I think it's a cute picture. I especially like the reindeer....and the huge antlers on Rudolph. And how he is smiling because his antlers are much bigger than the other guys. And how Santa seems to have had a bit too much egg nog ...and has apparently passed out in the floor of the sleigh.

If you click on the pictures it will make them bigger for your viewing enjoyment.

Day One Off

By Chris

Today (a day late) I started my extended time off. And, I'm tired. I spent the WHOLE day with my lovely wife, and she kept me busy. In the Middles School's principal's office by 8:25 for a meeting. Shopping until early afternoon. Movie watching until just before the kids arrived home. And, it all sort of makes me want to go to the office tomorrow. Don't get me wrong. Teresa is easily, by far, my favoritest person in the whole wide world. But, I already get the sense that she prefers her 7 a.m.'s to 2 p.m.'s Chris-free. It's nothing shes said. Just the vibes I can read after all these years. She says I'm "projecting." We were eating dinner together when she made the projecting accusation, and I asked her what she would do if I threw my water on her head. Isn't that stupid? Why do I think it would be funny to throw water on her? It just felt like that would be really funny. It's a strange, bent sense of humor I share with Lauren that make these things come into our heads. You know, like saying huh?? to someone a million times in a row when you actually hear them, then laughing at them when they raise their voice. Or, in a public place like church, leaning in to whisper something all serious and then mumbling nonsense over and over, getting the person to cock their head more and more awkwardly to hear what your saying (or not saying). You see, I'm not talking violent mad throwing of water. Silly, playful throwing. I would enjoy it. Sort of like she enjoyed carting me to Sam's Club and Best Buy and watching a movie. Of course, I didn't do it. This time (yes, I've done similar stuff before to her and Lauren. Lauren thinks it's funny. Teresa . . . not so much).

So, back to her not wanting me clogging up her mornings, projecting or not. That's cool by me. If I made a list of things I least like to do, all three of today's activities would be on it (school meeting, shopping, watching movies). And she knows that. So, I ask you. Isn't that worse than water on the head? The subtle aggression of boring aggrevation, in an attempt to drive someone away? Maybe I will get that water back out. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

cream cheese's a good thing!

by teresa

Sunday afternoon, as we were eating lunch, our neighbor James brought us a plate of homemade goodies. He had baked a pumpkin roll with cream chesses icing and dipped some pretzels in white chocolate. We enjoyed them after lunch...and let me tell was soooo good. He had put tons of icing in the roll and it kinda tasted like carrot cake. The plate was piled high....even after we had eaten. I was a very happy lady. Do I love cream cheese icing you ask? Yes I do! I even took a picture of it.

While cleaning up the kitchen after lunch I moved the plate of yummies to the table because Lauren was going a little overboard spraying the counters off....and I didn't want MY treats to be contaminated with Clorox.

We walked out of the room...and a few minutes later I hear Lauren scream...SHHOOOOORRRRTTTY!

I sprang from the couch to see what was the matter.
Away to the kitchen I flew like a flash,
Stepped on a matchbox car and threw out my back.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a empty red plate, just some crumbs laying near,
Table runner pulled down, and the plate on the floor,
I knew in a moment it must be SHORT!

That dang blasted (pardon my language) dog!!

He ate it all gone. I was so mad. I yelled...snatched and threw (well..actually I lured him with a peice of cheese) him in the garage. Not just for awhile either. For the rest of the day...and all night. The dig had sinned....and he needed to be punished.

Yesterday my neighbor asked how we like his treats. I told him we loved it...but that Shorty ate the leftovers. He laughed...and brought over a new plate. Yipee!

This time I put it on the counter...pushed way to the back.

The smell of pinesol makes me smile

by teresa

Yesterday was a blur of errands...and house cleaning.

I had planned on going all TURBO MOM and getting it all done before the kids got home from school. But, Ben's principal called in the morning and asked if I could be a lunch monitor. Apparently both of the regulars were sick or something. So I had to run my errands after I dropped the kids off at school....then do the lunch thing (do you know they begin lunch rotations at 10:30am?) until 1:00pm.

So cleaning had to wait until the house destroyers...I mean....the boys got home.

But Lauren really helped me out in a big way.

When Ben got home she took him to Target with her. I had a bag of stuff that needed to be taken back (didn't fit right) so she did that for me.

Once Nick got home the boys changed into karate duds and Lauren took them to lessons and then out to eat dinner(with my checkcard:0).

It gave me several hours to dust(upstairs and down), vacuum(upstairs and down), scrub bathrooms, mop all floors, put away all clothes (hampers are EMPTY now),run and unload dishwasher, and completely rearrange the boys room.

I separated their beds to opposite sides of the room and moved the dressers to another wall. I pushed Ben's desk by the window and hung all the boys posters I have been promising to hang. Ben's were High School Musical and his school banner. Nick's were a map of the United States and The Solar System. As I moved the furniture I scrubbed the walls and baseboards and dusted everywhere. It was so gross under and behind it all. I found so many Nutrigrain bar wrappers and empty juice cartons and gum and chewed up straws. PIGS!

The boys were beyond ecstatic when they came home and saw the room. I swear they actually went to bed better and got along with the room like this. Their beds used to be side by side....and they would pick at each other constantly. I also removed the playstation from their room and put it back downstairs. Nick moved it up there a month ago against my wishes. It's too much of a distraction in the bedroom. He would sneak and play it at soon as he opened his eyes in the morning...and when he was supposed to be getting dressed in the morning. When it was downstairs he never even thought to play it except on weekends every now and then.

So back down it came! No kid needs to play video games that much!

I will post pictures of the room change later.

I must go and finish getting ready. I have a big day ahead of me. Fun...but busy. I will blog about it later.

*peace out*

Sunday, December 17, 2006

"Therefore, send not to know for whom the bell tolls. It tolls for thee."

by teresa

Last night's church Christmas banquet was great.

Lots of yummy food and beautiful holiday singing.

After the dinner I took Kristian home with me for a special night.

I had promised her a sleepover for just the two of us. To curl up in the bed and me read her a book I bought her for her birthday.

We had fun snuggling and taking pictures. I started to read...and then a few minutes later I looked down. SHE WAS ASLEEP!

I guess we will have to finish it another day.

Chris came in from the ODU game and peeked in on us. He was so sweet about her invading his side of the bed. He went downstairs and hung out with Lauren (Nick was asleep and Ben and Kai spent the night with mom)...then he went to bed in the boys room so we could stay snuggled together. Here's some pictures...

We all went to church this morning....and Kristian and Ben had a handbell performance in front of the sanctuary. I will try to upload the video...but for now here are some pictures of Ben with his handbell and white gloves. Isn't he angelic? NOT!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

by teresa

We were all invited to The Daddy's annual lodge Christmas party this afternoon. It's mostly for the kids. He turned in the kids names and ages a few weeks ago....and then today Santa comes and calls each child up to sit on his lap and gives them a gift. They also had lots of kid friendly food. PB&J's, chips, chicken nuggets, cupcakes, cookies,etc. Mom and I took Ben, Kristian, Kai and Kaden (Nick went to a movie with a friend from church). All the children seemed to have a good time...Ben even saw a couple of kids from school. Kristian and Ben got their faces painted too. Grandaddy looked happy to have us there. He introduced us to everyone (he has been a member for like 50 everyone knows him) and enjoyed watching the kids running around having fun.
Here's some highlights of the afternoon.

We are only home for about an hour and a half. Our churches Christmas banquet begins at 5:00pm. So we are home to wash up (Ben has red cupcake icing EVERYWHERE) and get dressed in our church duds. Chris has opted out of the dinner because of the ODU game tonight (SCROOGE). So it will be just me and the kids. Lauren will meet us there after work.

Hope you and your familes are enjoying the weekend.




beta blogger

by teresa

This beta blogger thing is making me very mad!

I can't comment on some of my favorite peoples blogs.

Like Zephra...and Lisa and some others.


I just want them to know....I read you EVERYDAY.

I just can't comment.

Friday, December 15, 2006

To the Finish Line and Basketball Withdrawl

By Chris

It's Friday. The last day before being out of the office for about three weeks. That's right. Three weeks. Sure, I have to do a round-trip to Raleigh Monday . . . but after that there is the potential to actually be off until January 8! My boss actually pushed the issue with me to take that long off. Do I look tired or something? That's a pretty good boss, huh? Of course, with that type of time off on the horizon, everything blows up! So it's gonna be a real sprint to the finish line. So, why am I blogging? I guess because clearing the mind makes you sprint harder. Besides, it is going to be really tough to be off that long anyway. I mean, what in the world do you do for three weeks? I really don't think I have not worked at least a little for three weeks straight. Ever. Really. Since I was 16. Heck, It wasn't all that long ago that I would take vacation days from one job to get work done on "consulting" work done for some extra $$. I'm sure there are some things that need to be painted or whatever. But, that actually makes me want to go to work! I've tried to talk Teresa into getting on a plane with me and going somewhere for a few days. No-go yet. I've considered looking up all the best college basketball games on the slate in my part of the country and venturing to see them with whomever wants to tag along. Lauren did one such trip with me once in the days before hanging with dad was uncool, and she still remembers it . . . staying in the hotel and all.

Speaking of basketball, I am jonesing for a game! My ODU Monarchs are taking exams and it has been like 10 days since they played. The good guys actually take off for exams, recognizing that these dudes are actually college students. But it's a bummer for pathetic roundball junkies like me. I mean, even the blog and message boards slow down! Alas, there is a game Saturday night and Monday night, so I am about to get my fix.

Alright. Mind cleared . . . back to work.


by teresa

A great lady and friend from one of my favorite blogs mailed me a Christmas card last week. It is so pretty and it has her sons pictures on the front.

I put it at the front of my Christmas card display.

Chris came home from work and noticed the card. He asked...who is that?

I told him who it was and he was like....that's just weird. He doesn't get the whole internet friend thing. When ever I say my friend said this or my friend did that...he it a real friend or virtual friend? He just doesn't get it!

Well everyday...when he walks into the livingroom he smiles and says something about having the pictures of somebodies children you have never met on display.

The other day one of the kids noticed the picture. They asked Chris....who is that?

Chris smiled and said....they are my blog nephews.


My friend Lisa....who this blog was talking about....needs your prayers.

Her mother had a heart attack yesterday.

They are very, very close (they even live next door to each other just like me and my parents) and she is terrified of losing her.

She is only 67.

Lisa has asked for all of us bloggers (AND READERS) to please pray for her mother and this whole family.

Also...she has asked for words of encouragement on her blog (in the comments of her last post). it. I know...most of my readers don't usually leave comments. But please do in this situation.


Thursday, December 14, 2006

A RARE and magical moment

by teresa

I just put my last load of clothes in the dryer....

baked some cinnamon muffins...

brewed some Celestial Seasonings Cranberry Apple Zinger Tea...

and I am sitting down to read a the quiet...alone (for an entire hour of peace until Ben gets off the bus).

Envy me.

Only 11 more days till Christmas.

by teresa

I can't believe it.....can you?

I have more shopping and lots of baking to do still.

My kids are bought for (except for one more thing for Ben)...but the rest are done.

I didn't stick to my "two things only rule".

I ended up getting three things each.

Next year instead of a quantity...I think I should set a cost limit instead. Because three things can cost as much as 10 things...if you get the right things :0)

But I do LOVE my babies....and it's hard not to get them something they would squeal over. Ya know?

The good thing is we won't have a house full of neglected toys.

I am also getting new batteries for all their old toys (game boy advance, video now, bop it, portable tv/radio,etc.). So it will be like getting them all over again.

I still need to buy for Katy's kids. I was holding out for a raffle I had entered for a TMX Elmo. But no such luck....I didn't win. Pooh!

So Chris and I will go out soon and get them something later this week. Or maybe I should leave him at home. He has a tendency to spoil her children a bit. I think he feels they have a void to be filled with their father off an married to someone else now (and expecting a baby with the new woman any day). So I better leave him at home....or Kristian will be getting one of these. Don't laugh....I could see him buying it for her!

I also need to buy baking supplies for this weekend. I will make the cookies and fudge and other yummies for our neighbors and the boys teachers. I have had the tins for like two months now just waiting to be filled.

I did finish my Christmas cards yesterday...and even got them in the mail. I had to stand in line at the post office for 30 minutes waiting to get a couple books of the pretty snowflake stamps. But it felt so good to mail them off. I usually do it much earlier...but this year everything has been delayed due to the Green Family Plague of 2006.

Today the heating man comes to restore us to full warmth. hasn't been bad at all. We have had unseasonably warm weather this week and it is supposed to continue for many more days. I'm talking HIGH 60's!

To all you guys knee deep in snow......LUCKY!!!! My kids would give anything for a white Christmas. You are having snowball fights and building snowmen......and I am digging in the closet for my capris and flipflops. grrrrr

Let me go make breakfast (muffins) for the family.

Be blessed!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

You're Cool If You Have a . . .

By Chris

First, let me say that I like new technology toys. I have my fair share of them, especially the ones that have gotten pretty cheap. I am on my second Blackberry for instance, which I loved at first. But, I'm already wanting the even cooler new smart phones that take pictures, play music and have touchscreens. I can never keep up, but something inside makes me really, realy want to. There's always something better coming out. One of the things that has been pretty cheap for a while is web cams. I could never figure out what I would actually do with one though. Well, I got one yesterday . . . and I'm still not completely sure what I'll do with it. But, because it's new and nifty, hooking it up was the first thing on my agenda this morning (even though I probably won't actually find an legit business use for the thing for months). Most importantly though, the sleek little eye does look pretty cool clipped at the top of my laptop screen. And, above any functionality, looking cool is the most important part of getting a new tech toy. When Blackberries first came out, you just wanted to be one of the cool kids at the airport looking oh-so-important and busy, typing out emails as you walk the halls. Blue Tooth headsets . . . must have my ear blinking blue too to keep up with the clan! (Though I quickly abandoned that device and never could embrace the Blue Ear as a permanent body part). So, as the lone holder of a webcam in my office, those walking by my office can now think, "boy, that Chris sure has cool stuff!" I did spend a few minutes making faces into it while watching on the screen. That was productive. When my mail arrived, I showed the secretary that she could watch herself on my screen. She wasn't impressed. Dang! I guess I could record some type of message . . . a little tv show. . . or something on it. Maybe put it on YouTube. Soon, I bet my Instant Messaging will be "face to face" rather than typed out. Conference calls with on-screen video are coming. But, I am not sure that's a positive, because a big benefit of meetings by conference call is the ability to do a variety of other things simultaneously, which would be rude if people could see you doing those things. But, most importantly, I do look cooler than 100% of the people in here today. I'll make a plan to lure over my buddy who will be most impressed. Sure, he has a much cooler Blackberry than me, but he's had that for months. My webcam should win the day!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Last Road Update of the Year

By Chris

I've seen my last 6 a.m. Atlanta plane of the year! There's a quick trip to Raleigh still on the calendar, but that's not really traveling. In fact, I don't count a day as a real travel day if I get to sleep until at least 5 a.m. I get a lot of questions about how in the world I do those long days. A lot of people think I must be absolutely miserable. But, it's funny how you get used to doing whatever it is that life calls you to do (or, whatever God blesses you with being able to do, really) when you put on the right attitude. It may sound strange, but I've gotten into a habit of thanking God for my frequent 3:45 a.m. starts the second I wake up. It's automatic now . . . before I can even think about dreading early start or longing to catch a few more winks. Habits (good and bad) work that way. Our dialogue goes something like: "Good morning Lord. Thank you! It's 3:45 and you've given me this job, and this opportunity to make a difference today, and me and you are the only ones awake around here and I am going to be happy about it. Your mercies are new every morning . . . even when they sart at 3:45. And, if you could make the plane trip not-to-bumpy, that would be great!" I'm pretty sure a time is coming when 3:45 starts are not in the plan, and I'll be thankful for that too!

I'm not going to vacuum until Sears makes one you can ride on.

by teresa

What a crummy week this has turned out to be.

The heater broke AGAIN! The repairmans quick fix (that was supposed to last through the winter) broke in a couple of hours. He will now be coming on Thursday to install a new motor and blower. All to the tune of over $300! Nice.

We took Lauren's car to our mechanic yesterday to have an antifreeze leak fixed. Two hours later he called to let me know she needed a new thermostat and gasket and such and such. All to the tune of over $350! Nice.
Lauren is paying it mind you...but she only had $189 now(her last paycheck). So she will pay us back over the next couple months. She was disappointed(she had big Christmas plans for her money...don't we all)...but she needs to be taught when you have a car (or kids or house) THINGS HAPPEN. Unexpected things that cost an arm and a leg...and they usually happen at the most inopportune times. That's why you should SAVE some of your money each month and not spend it so frivolously on food and junk. She has learned the hard way....but it will make her all the more responsible and financially savvy in the future.

She hung the mechanics bill on the fridge and subtracted her $189 from the total. Last night she babysat for our youth pastor and his wife. She got home and put the money on the fridge and deducted another $20. She also said she will pick up some extra shifts at Target if she can. I think the weight of debt is already making her uncomfortable (and it's only been 24 hours). Lesson learned! *mom and dad pat themselves on the back*

To add to my already fun day...I also cleaned the bathroom yesterday. Notice I said bathroom...not bathrooms. My intention was to clean both. But after two and a half hours of scrubbing bathroom number one...I figured I would spread the fun out over a couple of days. Lauren had cleaned the bathrooms on Sunday. And what a fine job she did too *sarcasm*. So I decided to go full attack on the soap and dust tumble weeds...and volcano of trash spewing from the top of the trashcan that no one but me ever empties. There were balled up tissues and q-tips scattered all around the can where people tossed them and missed....AND THEN DIDN'T BOTHER TO PICK UP! I enlisted the help of my arsenal of cleaning products. This and this and this and this and this. And I even installed this baby to sit watch on any incoming filth. I'm surprised my house didn't explode from the mix of all the chemicals. But it sure looks shiny and smells good let me tell ya. I am going to rent one of those port-a-pottys for the now one will ever mess up MY bathroom again (pigs). I will tackle bathroom number two later today. I also need to run the vacuum today. But I have come to the conclusion that my vacuum sucks (which actually means it doesn't suck). I am going on a vacuum strike...until I am supplied with one of these babies. I am dyson...hear me ROAR!

I will now go and wake up the middle child for school.

Hasta la

Monday, December 11, 2006

You've got to be kidding me!

by teresa

This weekend my mother in law came over for a visit. I was showing her all my Christmas decorations...and how I had rearranged the kitchen table. I was eager to show her the beautiful white snowflake dishes I got for a steal at the thriftstore two weeks ago. She looked at them...and said,"these were MY dishes!" Three weeks ago she had donated them to the same thriftstore (UnionMission) when cleaning out her cupboards.

One mans know the rest.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

by teresa

It's funny how I can hardly pry my kids out of bed most mornings. But put some sausage in a frying pan....and they run down from their rooms like their beds were on fire.

Church doesn't start till 10:30...but we got up early to let Nick practice his karate demo he is performing in Kids Church today. It's the kids talent day...and Ben and Nick were supposed to perform...but Ben chickened out. Oh well...Nick is cool with doing it on his own. I will try to get a few pictures...but I don't want to freak Nick out (he is a bit nervous).

After church we are all coming home. Usually we all go our separate ways (Lauren w/ the teens, Nick with his friend Josh, Ben with Jackie) ...but they have some cleaning to do (the garage and yard...and Lauren's pig sty of a car). I am also feeling the need for "family board game fun". But I don't know how that will go over yet.

The repairman came out and fixed our heater yesterday (temporarily). It really needs a new motor (and he is calling with an estimate next week)...but he fixed it enough so that we won't freeze to death this weekend.

Nick had a great experience helping with Operation blessing yesterday. He said,"Mom, I got to hand them their toys!" "They were so happy to get them and they opened them right up and started screaming." He said there were lots of bikes and PS2's and MP3 players. He also said the food was yummy and plentiful. I'm so glad he was asked to help. He was giddy the whole ride home. Then he came in...layed on the couch and fell asleep from 4:00pm-8:30pm. Then he got up...went in his jammies...turned on the radio and went back to bed till 7:00 this morning. Good grief!

Well...I'm off to flip my hair, powder my face and throw on some pantyhose. Cause it's off to church we go.


Saturday, December 09, 2006

It's a bit nippy in here

by teresa

Chris is now home. He walked in from the airport...went to bed...and didn't get up for sixteen hours. I guess he was a bit worn out from his week of travel.

Ben spent last night with Jackie and George and Nick had a friend from church sleep over. They were up late watching movies and playing video games.

I woke up around 7:00am...and it was FREEZING in the house. I went down and checked the thermostat and it read BELOW 60 degrees. I had the heat set to 70...but nothing was blowing. I checked the breakers and the box and I got nothing! So the repair man in due here in about 10 minutes. Could one more thing break around here? Sheesh!

I was up at Ben's school around 8:00am this morning to set up for Santa's breakfast. I had to also take the money for pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus. We took 155 photos! And over 200 breakfasts were presold. It was catered by IHOP...and boy was it yummy. We only had about 50 show up for last years breakfast. Everyone was thrilled with the turnout. Jackie brought Ben up to get his picture done and then eat. She took him back to her house to help put up decorations and make a gingerbread house.

Chris took Nick's friend home...took Nick to his doctors appt...then home to shower and then up to church to volunteer for the Operation Blessing luncheon. It's for children who's loved one is in prison. I think they bought gifts ($100 worth) for around 75 children. Nick will be serving them lunch and cleaning up.

Well I'm of to corral the dog so he won't tear into the repair man when he comes to the door.

See ya!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

What's that Smell

By Chris

O.K. I have discovered another neat feature of this nifty river-front room. These huge ships sail right by my window. So huge, they seem to barely fit in the canal. I'm talking city blocks long and taller than my 6th floor window. I could throw the pen on my desk and hit them, they're so close. I remember seeing these before, but not from my bed. They look really weird because in part of the city several blocks from the river you actually lower than the river, so you literally can look up and see the ships going by above the buildings, without actually seeing the river. Some are full of containers . . . others I'm not sure what their purpose is. If one got off course, it could take out blocks of this city. But, they seem to be stirring up a fowl smell from the river. It got into my room through the closed door even. I couldn't figure it out. Then, I opend the balcony door and . . . wam! . . . it hit me in the face.

I am also remembering that the riverwalk leads to many bars. Some patrons a very happy when they leave, because they are hootin' and hollerin' quite a bit as they pass below, if you know what I mean. Once when I was here, one of these patrons apparently ended up in the river and the Coast Guard was flying about searching.

The Last Leg This Week

By Chris

Alright, after about 12 hours at home, I'm almost through my last leg of travel for the week, making it to Savannah this morning after a 6 a.m. departure. And, it was crowded this morning. Parking garage fuller than usual . . . security line longer than usual . . . and most people were not in business attire. Seems vacation travel is already in full swing. I scored my free upgrade this morning, and was the only person in the cabin who was not a part of this one family, headed to Aruba. I sat next to the nicest little girl who was JAZZED about the trip. What a trip, huh? First class, the whole family, to Aruba. It seemed to be three generations (there was a set of grandparents, then a couple of other family units with kids). Even a 9 month old baby, who didn't cry once. They also knew these two fellas who came through the cabin and indicated they were headed to Veil for a long weekend of snowboarding. They were all very Barbie and Ken-ish, but pretty nice. Savannah's nice and everything, but it ain't Aruba or Veil, and I sure am not on vacation! I did get a very nice room right on the river. Literally. I could jump off my balcony into it. The huge, beautiful suspension bridge is off to the left. Very nice. But, it is COLD. No walking the river like I planned tonight. I'm told to expect below 20 degrees in Atlanta tomorrow. Any birds that flew south to here for the winter are going to be in shock!

Oh well. . . .As usual, a dinner meeting calls.

My husband asked the funniest thing the other day....

by teresa

He called from worked and this was how the conversation went.

Me: Hello

Chris: Hey...How much do you weigh?

Me: Silence...head spinning from insane question that I hade no intention of answering.

Chris: I am filling out life insurance information and I need to know your height and weight!

Me: Yeah....right! Like that's gonna happen! Why don't you tell me how much you think I weigh.

Chris: I am NOT going there!

Me: Just guess.

Chris: 120????

Me: hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! Are you kidding me? Your mother (who is very perfect and petite) probably weighs more than that. Do I look the same size as your mother?

Chris: Like I said....I'm not going there!

Me: Well...I'm five foot. And that's all your gonna get.

Chris: I can bring home all the paperwork and let you fill it out if you won't give me the number.

Me: *Considering options* Two hours of paperwork and online applications....or two seconds of honesty.


Tuesday, December 05, 2006

He looks like a deranged Easter Bunny!

by teresa

Just walked in the door from school.

I literally spent 9 hours at Ben's school today between volunteering, the PTA board meeting, and then the play tonight. I gotta start saying...NO!

At the PTA meeting our president took our photos for a sign she's making wishing the children and staff a Merry Christmas from the PTA.
Here's mine...

We all look like Ho Ho Ho's!

OH MY! I look like I dozed off in the middle of the photo shoot :0)
Tomorrow I will be back at Ben's school all day... then Thursday MIT and Nick's school...Friday I will clean the house and do some more Christmas shopping. I have one more thing to get for Ben and Lauren. I also need to buy for Katy's kids.
Have you guys finished shopping already?
I am usually done by now...but with us being ill I have gotten way behind.

I think I'll send Lauren up to 7-11 to get me a vanilla cappuccino.
I love having a daughter with a license.
I'm gonna go get the boys to bed and soak my feet.
There are lots of Christmas shows on to enjoy. But I haven't seen any commercials for my favorite Chirstmas movie yet. It's one of those movies you've seen a gazillion times and it keeps getting better and better. You have ALL seen it (more than once I bet). Here's a few hints...
*Over the years I got to be quite a connossieur of soap. Though my personal preference was for Lux, I found that Palmolive had a nice, piquant after-dinner flavor - heavy, but with a touch of mellow smoothness.
*Only I didn't say "Fudge." I said THE word, the big one, the queen-mother of dirty words, the "F-dash-dash-dash" word!
*Only one thing in the world could've dragged me away from the soft glow of electric sex gleaming in the window.
*I want an official Red Ryder, carbine action, two-hundred shot range model air rifle.
What's your favorite holiday must see movie?

On the Road Again

By Chris

Teresa is pretty insistent on updates from the road. So here goes the boring run down. First, who made this crazy itenerary for the week? What was I thinking? Tuesday a.m. to Charlotte N.C. Wednesday P.M. to Norfolk, VA (Home). Thursday A.M. to Savannah, GA (via Atlanta, of course). Friday P.M. to Norfolk, VA (Home). All is well, so far. Just had a minor run-in with a hard-to-understand cab driver, who complained about taking my fare by credit card, with what I thought was a generous tip. He corrected me. "I loose three bucks with this," he says. "They charge me extra for this credit car pay. That's why I usually say no to card. This cost me three bucks." I thought: "Charge more! I didn't make the stinkin' price up. You told me what to pay, and I added a tip!!" So, I gave him three bucks extra. I don't need the guilt of hungry cab driver's children on my conscious, after all. Which reminds me that perhaps the thing I hate most about traveling is dealing with the variety of tip-seeking service providers lurking around every turn. I know they rely on tips for a living. It's just that they can add up if you're not careful. Everyone wants to touch your bag . . . cab driver touches your bag . . . cha ching . . . Hotel Bell Hop beats you to the trunk and touches your bag . . . cha ching . . . Room's not ready, need to store the bag (with a bell hop touching your bag) cha ching. Room service (sure there's a delivery charge and 25% service fee, but still a line for "tip") . . . cha ching. I feel like getting a sign for my bag: "Owner is perfectly capable of carrying and storing this bag. Touch it if you like, but you will get nothing for beating owner to this position!"

Oh, well. Off to dinner meeting. Bye.

My feet hurt

by teresa

I spent five hours at Ben's school yesterday...rushing back and forth to the handraising cues of 200 children.

Hardly a moments break in between classes coming in.

I worked the Santa shop. It is filled with gifts for mommies and daddies, brothers and sister, grandma's and grandpa's, etc. The kids come in...get a blank list...look around and then raise their hand when they see something mom would like. We write it down and the price. Then they take that list home and their parents send in the appropriate money. They come back in the rest of the week to shop and get the presents wrapped. That way they have surprise gifts for everyone.

They are not allowed to shop for themselves....only loved ones. This is VERY hard for some of them to handle. So they would be like...ummmm...."I want to write down that egg filled glow in the dark green slime" I would ask..."for who?" Ummmm..."for my daddy." "He loves slime." Too funny! I would try and redirect them to the mugs or keychains, or tool sets. But they would be adamant about that green slime. So I would write it down. Merry Christmas Dad!

I am going back for round two today. This time I'm wearing my comfy shoes (bo bo's)!

It's going to be a long day. I have Santa shop....then a PTA meeting at 3:00pm...and the kindergarten pta program and play tonight at 6:00pm. I will be working the t-shirt sales table (yippee...sarcasm). Lauren is also attending tonight to help with the kindergarten play. I can't wait to see her up there with the other teachers.

Makes a momma proud I tell ya!

To everyone commenting on my wonderful new background.....
I had NOTHING to do with it. My sweet friend Mary designed the whole thing herself. She is SUPER talented...isn't she? Go over to her house today and say hello. She's been painting her daughters room(two colors AND decorative border...impressive). We all know how FUN painting is (again with the sarcasm) give her a little love. Then you can see her cool background.

Have a blessed day!

Monday, December 04, 2006

Outta sight...outta my mouth!

by teresa

Chris comes home from his business trip last week...

Walks in the door and we say our pleasantries...

Goes to the kitchen cabinet and opens...

Reaches up to the top shelf...

Pulls out box of oreos...

Takes out two and gives me this evil smile...

Then slides it back up in it's place of protection.

Apparently my husband keeps things up there knowing I (being vertically challenged) have no way of finding them.

That's wrong people....just wrong!

Married people shouldn't keep secrets....especially creme filled ones!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Yes...I have a Myspace

by teresa

About a year ago I created a myspace to monitor my teenage daughter's comings and goings(she was thrilled) on the internet (and those of her friends). I would read all (and tell all to the parents of those kids who were being inappropriate). I'm such a (narc) good mommy! :0)

Well after awhile many of my family members (sister, cousins, MIL, FIL, etc.) got an account too. Also lots of church friends and high school friends. It's exciting to click over every now and then and see a comment from someone I was friends with at 16....or say hi to my cousin whom I only see maybe twice a year. The internet is a wonderful thing!

Here's my site...if your interested.
by teresa

It's Sunday night. The weekend went too fast.

We had a great time visiting with my Uncle and his family yesterday.

The kids played all day (except for Nick who slept all day recovering from his all night lock-in).

The adults ATE all day.

Mom made brownies and M&M cookies. And the spaghetti was incredible! The best I've ever tasted. It had meatballs and pork cutlets in the sauce. Have mercy!

We took the kids to a train show at a church down the street and they enjoyed looking at the displays and seeing Santa. A man at the entranced was dressed like the conductor on Polar Express. he gave the kids and ticket to enter...and before they left he would call them over one at a time and pull a silver bell from his pocket. After ringing it he would ask..."did you hear that?" Yes...they would say. Then he would smile and say..."YOU BELIEVE!" And then he would punch their tickets. This brought big smiles to the kids faces. If you haven't seen the it! It's great.

Beth and mom and I left the kids with the menfolk and went shopping at Garden Ridge for a couple of hours. It was terribly crowded, but well worth the trip for the deals we picked up.

Church was nice today. Some women had come in this week and decorated the sanctuary with wreaths and garland wrapped in white lights. How beautiful! I always tell Lauren...when you get married it MUST be in December. Our church is always exquisitely decorated for the holidays. After church we went out to eat with some other church families...and then we came home and Lauren's friends from church came and hung out all day.

We have been relaxing the day away. This week is extremely busy for both Chris and I. Me with school(Santa shop), PTA meeting and play, karate banquet,etc. And Chris will be out of town all week. No fun!

Here are some pictures from yesterdays activities.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Ben's a chick magnet

by teresa

The karate dojo had and all night lock-in last night. For Ben's age they had to be picked up at 10:00pm last night. They boys had a blast. Ben was very reluctant to leave when we arrived. When we found him (there are several rooms) he was sitting on the floor with four teenage girls playing Catch Phrase. They were all pretty and giggly and crowded around him. I don't think I've seen a bigger smile on his face.
Nick was doing Judo with some other boys his age....and he was excited to continue the night after we left. When I picked him up at 6:45 this morning (it ended at 7:00am) he was wired and giddy(the result of pizza, donuts and mountain dew for the past fourteen hours). All the kids (there must have been 60) were vacuuming, mopping and scrubbing every inch of the dojo (I can't even imagine how trashed it was). I can't believe it....but he is still up and watching tv right now. He will crash soon...and it ain't gonna be pretty!
My Uncle Jim and Aunt Beth are coming around noon today. I am excited to see them and their boys. Mom has been cooking all night for our dinner tonight. She is making my Aunt Alice's spagetti sauce and meatballs. Yum! Aunt Alice (my Nanny's sister) and Uncle Dominic ran a FANTASTIC italian resaurant(Ciola's) in Virginia Beach for like 50 years. Dom passed away a few years ago and this summer Alice gave my mother the restaurants recipe (with the stipulation to never share it with anyone). Too funny!
It is finally cold here this morning. I have been in capris and short sleeve shirts all week with our temperatures in the high 70's. But thanks to the little cold front that moved through yesterday I can break out my comfy sweatshirt and jeans today.