Monday, January 31, 2011

A Little Ancestry/History

Now if you've read my blog for any amount of time and you see the word 'Ancestry', then you probably think I'm going to talk about my mother the German Jew Presbyterian. 

But, I'm not!

I also won't be talking about my second favorite genealogical subject: Granny Sherry's Reason-My-Kids Have-Blue-Eyes-100% Norwegianess.

Nope.

Today I'll be talking about my dad's side of the family.

My parents are hosting my dad's cousin reunion this year, and he wanted me to label some pictures so he could give out copies as party favors.
My grandmother is the one labeled "Demetra", and I don't think I'm being biased when I say she's the prettiest one.  She is!
Now, my mom may have the corner market on being the German Jew, but I think it might actually be a little cooler for me to share that my great grandfather (pictured: James Washington) fought in the Civil War.

Yes, you read that right.

Civil War.

Yep. My dad's grandfather fought in the Civil War.

How is that even possible you might ask?
Well, my grandmother was born in 1894. 
The Civil War ended in 1865.
That's 29 years. And as you can see, Mr. James Washington Wiggins was certainly no youngin' when this photo was taken.

On another historical side note, this is my dad (far left) with his parents and brothers and sisters (one sister was missing from the picture).
My dad's oldest sister was 21 years older than my dad (and is standing beside him).
The place where my parents live today is where most of my dad's family grew up. (They moved to Huntsville, TX when my dad was two.) 
It also happens to be about five miles from the Eastham prison farm.

Now you might be saying, "Why does the 'Eastham prison farm' sound familiar?"

Well, if you're a history buff, it was on January 16, 1934, Clyde Barrow (along with Bonnie) orchestrated the escape of Raymond Hamilton, Henry Methvin and several other convicts in the infamous "Eastham Breakout".

And like any other weekday morning, my aunts, (who would have been between the ages of about 9-14) were walking to school that morning. 
Obviously, they didn't know what was going on, but were terrified when they saw a car with convicts waving guns pass by them. 
They ran all the way to school, only to learn later that is was Bonnie and Clyde and company they had seen.

It took until May 23rd that year to track down Bonnie and Clyde who were ambushed and killed in Bienville Parish, Louisiana.  The "Eastham prison break" is considered Bonnie and Clyde's "final run".

So there you have it. 
A little Texas history lesson for the day.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Rhinestone Cowboy

Lately it feels like I've been writing a fashion blog.
Who would've thought that was even possible since I live with 3 boys and a husband that wore jean shorts on our first real date.
(Yes, he wore jean shorts.  But don't worry, those have long been removed from his wardrobe.)

In the past few days Reed has refused to wear clothes.
He has, however, been studying at the Kyle school of accessorization.
Just check out this little get-up.

Friday, January 28, 2011

This Should Be Required

 This was painted outside a restaurant in the Reno/Tahoe airport. 


Love it!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

The Reason For Reno

The real reason I've been in Reno for the last few days was to see Sarah Palin speak.  Now I know I have many readers that aren't Sarah fans (Hi JD!), but not to worry, this post won't be about politics.  Think of it as a cross between fashion police and my commentary on our fantasy friendship.
(And if you are a Sarah fan...you know I'm going to do plenty of fawning!)

I've actually known I was going to see my fantasy BFF since I was home at Thanksgiving.  JD helped me pick out my dress, and if JD says 'wear it'...I wear it! 

Trying to do my best celebrity red carpet pose.

Sarah was speaking at the Weatherby Award, which is a big deal in the hunting world. (Jason's dad won it about 20 years ago.) 
These were the table centerpieces.  I loved them!

Here's what the room looked like. Since Jason's dad is a past award winner, and now on the Weatherby board of directors, we got to sit right up front!

And here's my girl. 
She was about 20 feet away from me...with 3 huge bodyguards. 
She mostly spoke about her love of hunting, the outdoors, her parents (who were there) and her TLC show. 

So let's talk fashion.
She really looks just like she does on TV.  She's little and skinny.
She wore her hair down, leather jacket, and I'm thinking it was a suede skirt. And, of course, those great high-heeled leather boots.

Front view of her ensemble.

BFFs together at last.

The end of the evening...
My hair is a little flatter, but I can't wipe the smile off my face!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Stay Tuned


Jason just booked an alligator hunt for JR with one of the groups featured on 'Swamp People' for labor day weekend. JR is going to freak out!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Looks like Reno


Jason walked away from the craps table with these little babies in his hand. Now if I could just get him to quit while he's ahead.

I Did It

Even after all my miles back and forth from Beijing, I had never flown all by myself. ( JR always kept me company for those 24 hour jaunts.) But today I changed that.

Sure it was just the quick flight from Durango to Denver, but this nervous flyer did it!
And they pretty much pulled out all the stops to make me as nervous as possible.
First, the weight distribution wasn't right, so they had to send everybody in the front to the back.
Then the pilot came on and said we had to sit there while the instruments warmed up since they were all frozen. And finally, a nice spray down from the de-icer.

At this point all I needed was for a mechanic to get on with a wrench in his hand to have a little chat with the pilot. (That actually happened on a flight Jason and I were on from Dallas to Houston.)

But, I'm here, and I've met up with Jason.
Next stop, Reno!

Monday, January 24, 2011

My Girl Shirt

The other day Reed told Jason, "I want to wear my girl shirt."
Jason: You don't have any girl shirts!
Reed: Yes! I want to wear my girl shirt.
Jason: You don't have any girl shirts.
Reed: Yes I do, right there.

And here's the "girl shirt" he's referring to:
You can imagine Jason's relief when I said, "Oh, when he asked me what his shirt said I told him, 'Girls Like Me.' "
(I figured he'd understand that, and it'd save me an hour of explaining.)

Kyle took it even one step further.
He says it's his "Mommy loves me shirt."
We've been working on learning that Mommy is a girl.
The only girl in the house.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Bloody Mary

I wasn't expecting any comments on my boring post about my run last week, and instead I got a whole bunch!
And by 'a whole bunch' I mean 5. But hey, that's a lot in these parts 'round here.
And since I had so many comments, I thought I'd do another run post.
(Now my 5 commenters are saying, 'Ah Man! Why did I comment on that?!")

So I had a much better run today, and was pleased with my time and effort. I ran up all the hills I usually walk, and finished 11 minutes and 52 seconds (but who's counting) faster than last week.

But when I got home I looked at my shoe and thought,
Huh. Wonder why my shoe's pink?
I then took off my shoe to find my sock completely soaked in blood.

Now you know I love a good exaggeration to help out a story, but as you can probably imagine, if the blood soaked out the top of my shoe, my sock was pretty bad.
It looked a lot worse than it was...one of my toenails cut into the toe next to it, and I swear I didn't even feel a thing.

JR felt it though. 
 He was screaming and hollering (as only a dramatic offspring of mine could do)
and I even thought he might pass out.
I said, "JR, how are you going to be a doctor if you can't look at blood?"
JR: "I'M NOT GOING TO BE A DOCTOR!"
*scream, stagger, flail*

Oh that's right.
The only job JR's ever said he wanted was to be a chef.
The child who won't eat a fruit or vegetable wants to a chef

Seems to me if you can be a chef although you won't eat most foods, being a non-looking-at-blood-doctor wouldn't be much of a problem either.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Fashion Never Sleeps

I went to a work dinner with Jason tonight, and when we got home I went to check on the kids.

Here's how I found Kyle...
I expected the two-sizes-too-small bear pajamas (they're an extension of his "bear hunting" and he wants to wear them all the time), but the monkeys were a surprise!

So...the "gotta have it" look of the week deemed by the Resident Fashionista...
 Monkey Slippers. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Stop, Drop, and Roll

We had The American Red Cross and a local fireman/paramedic at Cub Scouts tonight for the boys to earn their Emergency Preparedness badge. 
The fireman was trying to teach the boys not to be scared if they were to come in the house looking for them.
Our Scouts thought he looked like "Darth Vader", and was the coolest person they'd ever seen.
But the fireman wanted to make sure Kyle and Reed wouldn't be scared.

How cute is this?
And if you're wondering:
A. How am I in the picture?
and
B. Why is Reed barefooted?

Well, one of the Scout dads is a professional photographer, so I handed him my camera for the night.  And Reed left the house wearing his red cowboy boots without socks.  All Texans know no socks and boots don't mix. Unfortunately, Reed only lived in Texas about a year, so he didn't learn that lesson.  On the other hand, he does know that you can't walk in snow in tennis shoes.


Surprisingly, Kyle was even willing to go see him!

And you might recognize that little face hidden under there.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

When I Grow Up

This weekend Jason and I found ourselves riding the "ski-school bus" (as Kyle and Reed called it) because JR gets to ride the school bus everyday. 
We literally got on the ski shuttle and rode it back to where we got on. (Wailing and gnashing of teeth to ride the bus was on the verge of making an appearance...so ride the bus to nowhere we did.)

Another thing JR "gets" to do...
Homework.

And these two can certainly busy themselves (for about 3 minutes, anyway) doing theirs.



I'm just glad they're not begging for spelling tests!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Now That's a Bunch of Boys

With JR off from school today, I decided to make the trip down to Farmington to go to lunch with Jason, and most importantly, make a Target run.

I talked my friend, Cassidy, in to coming with me since:
A. She's super fun, so I knew she'd make the hour and ten minute drive much more entertaining
and
B. Her husband works with Jason, so we could all easily have lunch together. 

I assured her it would be no problem to get all the kids in the car.
And here's what that little circus looked like:
Yep, that would be five boys.
Five boys ages 7,4,3,3, and 20 months.

I'm not sure if I should call it a "What Were We Thinking Day?" or "Wow. They Did Really Good Day".

I'm sure people who aren't used to boys would have thought, "what were we thinking?", but we Boy Moms didn't skip a beat. 
Kids jumped off things, screamed, cried, fell down, needed changes of clothes due to "bathroom issues", begged for candy, and said "fart" followed by hysterical laughter over and over again. 

Just a normal day as far as I'm concerned...except I got to go to Target!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

And Now This Is All I Got...

As you can tell by the picture of Reed with a Mr. Potato Head mouth, I'm kinda out of blog post ideas.
 I thought about posting the pictures of Kyle and Reed skiing on Saturday, but they pretty much look like the ones from the last time. So I nixed that idea. (You'll know I'm desperate if those pop up tomorrow.)

I usually write my posts in my head while I'm running. 
And as I was running today, I came up with...nothing.

So, I guess I can just tell you about my run today. 

I'm training for The Canyonlands Half Marathon in Moab, Utah in March.
It's billed as one of the most beautiful courses in the country, and they're pretty proud of it too since we had to put in for a lottery to get chosen to run.
Obviously, we got drawn.
Which I don't know if I'm excited or scared about.
I looked up last year's results and the girl who came in "in the middle" in my age group ran less than 10 minute miles.
So yeah, I know I've got to run 13 miles in about 2 hours and 9 minutes just to be "average".
Yep, no pressure.

So how was my run today?
 It wasn't pretty...in all possible ways.
As we were driving home from church I thought, "Oh, the roads are really clear, I'll just run outside today."
It was still about 19 degrees when I started out, so I figured it was important to wear most everything in my closet:
Two pairs of pants, long sleeve shirt, fleecy shirt, vest, gloves, and knit stocking hat.
I caught a glimpse of myself...and with my black hat, vest, and gloves I think I might have looked more like a bank robber.
Plus, I got hot about half a mile in.

I was also wrong about the roads being clear.
The roads in our neighborhood still have plenty of ice and packed snow. 
Packed snow isn't hard to run on, but I was scared to death I was going to slip on the ice.
So there was much more leaping in my run than I like. (And just so we're clear, I prefer no leaping during a run.)

Another problem...
I haven't run outside since October.
October!
Needless to say, running on a treadmill is nothing like the "real" thing.

So here's the recap:
I looked ridiculous, I was dodging ice packs, and I was s-l-o-w.
How slow? Slow.
As in, I might as well take up walking as my new sport of choice.

Friday, January 14, 2011

This Is All I Got For Ya....

A kid with a Mr. Potato Head mouth.
Literally.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

10 on 10 on the 12th

I've been meaning to do the 10 on 10 project since last year.
(Take a photo every hour for ten consecutive hours on the tenth of each month. Document a day of your life and find beauty among the ordinary moments.)
But I never seem to know the actual date, so I miss it every month. 
So I just did my 10 on the 12th...

12 days and I still haven't had a Diet Coke/Coke Zero.
I made myself a chocolate smoothie kinda thing. 
 It didn't even come close to tasting as good as artificially flavored-no calorie-syrupy goodness.


Here are my gym shoes.
Okay, so I don't actually work out in these, but I have to wear them to and from the gym so I don't fall on the ice in the parking lot.
I'm usually hot on the way out of the gym, so I just wear them with my gym shorts. (As seen here.)
It's a lot of look.


I think we all know the only person in the house who would accessorize while bear hunting with a giant sword.


I had to go out in the garage today and bring in some of my new friends to look at.
I picked them up yesterday -75% off Christmas at Pier 1.
This guy is my favorite.
I've never been one to decorate with snowmen since:
A. I felt ridiculous putting out snowmen in Houston since it's usually 80 degrees.
and
B. I'm from the John Reynolds School of Decorating where you must always have a grouping.
(And the grouping must be in an odd number.)
Well, I've picked up a few snowmen now that I live where there's actual snow, so this will be the showpiece of my snowman grouping next year.


Everything tastes better with avocado.


I tried to get some Cub Scout stuff organized.
I didn't get very far.


I did, however, get to watch Kyle and Reed pick up everything in the house with these.
Zhu-Zhu Pets, juice cups, and...each other.


Doing extra math for fun.
 
Yep, borrowing in subtraction problems is an absolute par-tay.
Then he went and played the piano for fun.
Good thing he looks like me so I know he's mine.


The pillow pets were a huge hit this Christmas.


And...an end to the day.
Cause if I had a picture of an avocado, and not these two faces, I'd have some seriously upset grandparents.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Liberace Without the Fashion Sense

As I was getting JR dressed for his first piano recital this afternoon he said, "I don't like this shirt."
Me: Well, just be happy I'm not making you wear a tie.
JR: You could buy me one of those T-shirts that look like a tuxedo!

And with that comment, Little Liberace (sans sequins, fur, or tuxedo T-shirt) was off to his piano debut.

I have to admit I teared up a few times, and JR couldn't wipe the smile off his face.

(I'm still not used to my new Christmas present camera. I walked out of the house with the camera, but forgot to bring the lens.  I'm so sad since these could have been great pictures!)


You might remember that JR's request for playing the piano was that he wanted to "take lessons from a boy teacher". 
Well, here's his boy teacher, Ryan. (JR calls him 'Mr. Ryan' and adores him!)
So now you can see why I blurted out, "Wow, you're tall!" the first time I met him.

We attended a rockin' after-party...
Cause ya know, that's how all the serious musicians roll.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

It's Pretty Easy Being Three

I can no longer play the sympathy card by saying, "I have twin-two-year-old boys".
Because I now have twin-three-year-old boys!

When I asked Kyle and Reed what they wanted to do for their birthday they told me,
"Blow out candles with Price."
"Eat donuts with Price."

Well, that was easy.
 Done. And Done.

But before we headed over to Price's house yesterday, I drove through "Old McDonald's" and let them have a little pre-breakfast breakfast.

Price was more than happy to "blow out candles and eat donuts", although they made a last minute decision to switch out donuts for blue cupcakes. 



After a non existent nap, (they laid in their beds and screamed, "Is it still my birthday?!" for an hour) it was time to pick up JR and take him to piano lessons.
And since piano lessons just happen to fall during happy hour, they thought they could use a little birthday pick-me-up.

Kyle and Reed finished up their day with cake and presents at home. 
It certainly wasn't a party the likes of JR would find acceptable, but my little guys were happy as could be.