Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Jump! Jump!!

Wow - 
we are finally up to February 2013!
At this rate...
mercy - 
I don't even want to think about how 
far behind I am!

Being the big football fans we are,
we planned to watch the Super Bowl.
We didn't have any major plans
for a big party...
we never do...
we are pretty low key.

Down here,
BBQ is beef brisket.
I have been disappointed way too many
times going to a BBQ restaurant and
NO pork being on the menu!!

They have NO idea what real BBQ is down here!
So finding pulled pork,
you gotta do it yourself!

So we do.

We have smoked a couple of butts
and decided that we needed to fire up 
the smoker for super bowl.
Why not?

We started at around 2am
to make sure the pork was done for Super Bowl.
Then later in the morning,
put some chickens on,
a couple of turkey legs
then even later some smoked sausage
(just to heat those up really).

Here we are mid-cooking...
look at that butt!
I am ready to make some more now!!

And, of course, 
you have to clean up before any party...
even if it is just family.

Mr. T, er, Prince T
did his part.
(wearing his crown from the 
birthday party the previous weekend)

Then the older boys talked me into 
jumping on the trampoline with them.

I think they just like me to jump
so they can go 

Then the littles got some 
trampoline time
with mommy too!

While I had a captive audience,
I asked daddy to hop up there 
with us and take a picture!


 After all the cooking,
and jumping...
Mr. T just couldn't make it through
the game...

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Birthday Girl!

My sweet only daughter

on Jan 28th.

We stayed home and
had a few friends over for a 
little get together.
The funny thing is,
in the circles we run in...
we invite 2 other families...
and we have a total of 12 kids here!!

We had a nice little little gathering for our sweet girl.

She wanted a princess party.
But then we made the mistake of taking
her to Party City
(along with everyone else)
and she couldn't make up her mind
WHAT exactly she wanted...
she wanted a
princess/mermaid/Hello Kitty/rock star
birthday party!
How am I supposed to do that?

Since we had the whole crew with us,
we got way more at Party City
than we had planned
(well, than *I* had planned)
I had buyer's remorse as I was
walking out of the store...
already trying to figure out what
was going to go back!

I got home
and got to brainstorming
and internet searching...

I wanted something kinda crafty,
but not over the top...
I wanted some activities,
but nothing that I had to prep too much for.
I loved some of the ideas I saw on
Pinterest when I typed in
Princess Party
but got overwhelmed quickly.
There were some amazing
parties and party ideas
shown on Pinterest.

I was flabberghasted at some of the things...
They were beautiful...
in the end...
we went for the budget friendly party...
And my daughter loved it!
After all - it was for her,

Food Fit for a 4 yo Princess:

 We even had little "swords"
to eat the fruit with!
The boys loved that!!

They could fit 3 grapes on a sword!
They could totally fit more in their hand,
but it is WAY more fun eating them
off of a SWORD!!

The Set Up:

(princess cake designed by the birthday girl
and made by yours truly)

(the boys made her a wonderful birthday banner! -
this may have started a new tradition in our house!)

And one or two balloons!

My baby sister made this amazing tu-tu for my daughter
a few years ago...she wasn't crazy about it
since it was so big...
But she LOVES it now!!!


Lots of playtime with her little friends!

Trampoline Time:

While the girls (plus Mr. T) 
were playing on the trampoline...

the big boys attempted an impromtu
flag football game...

Making froot loop necklaces for little princes & princesses!

Some of the boys taking time out from the game
to pose for me with their necklaces!

We made prince & princess crowns!
But unfortunately J was the only one I could
get to sit still long enough to take a picture of!!

Cake Time!!

How many attempts did it take for Ms. Priss to blow out her candle?






Yep FIVE!  Bless her heart.
We finally decided she needed help!
Look at all those little lips puckered 
up helping her blow!  

As tradition goes in this house...
the birthday person gets to cut their cake...
Big knife for a big cake!
Whoa Momma!

Of course the inside of the princess' cake,
had to be PINK!

Pinata time!! 

We didn't have anywhere to hang the pinata at this house
like we did back in NC...
so we had to get creative...
It worked but was not ideal!!

I adored watching this little one figure out
how to hold the bat!

But she got it!

Mr. T is all boy and
totally knew what to do!
Look at that stance!

 Then this cutie!
She did great!
Made contact and all!
But had her eyes closed!
She is SO good,
she can do it with her eyes closed!

Then the bigger boys got a chance...
but daddy decided to tease them a little...
watch your toes smart guy!  ;)

Then this one did it...
I see a future baseball player right here!
Look at that form!
Good graicous!
He busted the pinata!

Then the swarm began!
Papa Grande helped Mr. T jump in there to get him 
some too!

Random Pictures:

I couldn't resist adding this photo!
This daddy is TOTALLY secure in his 
manhood here!
Airforce JAG too!

A birthday hug and kiss from daddy
for his ONLY little girl!

Then one of the mom's suggested that we 
send up some birthday wishes/prayers
for the birthday girl...
so we did!

We all loved that!

Then Ms. Priss decided to attempt to catch a
hovering balloon!

I love this picture!!

Happy 4th Birthday Angel Girl!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Technical Difficulties...

So I have this awesome new camera...
to take tons of pictures with...
but the pictures are HUGE!

So because of this,
I have to figure out how to resize them...
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!

But, patience is not a virtue of mine...
I have 4 kids,
and just flat out have

So I really enjoyed being able to 
upload the pictures into blogger and GO!

But I have hit this 
speed bump
Ain't Nobody Got Time For That!
(shout out to my sista!)

So until I can figure out how to streamline this 
process and get pictures 
resized and uploaded more quickly...

Bear with me please!

I have a ton 
of backlog
and a ton of stuff to share...

but for now,
hang in there with me while I figure this out!

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Sunday, March 3, 2013

Our Critters

not talking about the kids here.  

And I am not talking about the furry kind
(I can't handle the furry kind - too much work
and too much fur!)

We have the kind of critters
that live in water.

Last year the family got an aquarium

We have all enjoyed watching the fish
and adding to it over time.

We have quite the eco-system going on in there.
1 fresh water crab
3 mollies
1 guppy (left)
3 some other kinda fish
1 swimming frog

For Christmas, 
J asked for a 

It was his top item...
so we were thankful when Santa brought it.  

Daddy was diligent 
and ordered the frog to grow

It arrived a few days later.
And I think daddy was just as excited
as the kids were!

The tadpole had been living with us
for about a week in this picture...

We put his home right next to the aquarium,
so he wouldn't be lonely...

Then when we were doing our Christmas shopping
Daddy stumbled upon a neat gift 
that he wanted to get the boys...
I wanted NO part of it
and told him that this gift would be coming from him...
and him alone!

When the kids opened it,
I even told them that it was daddy's idea!  :)

Are you kidding me???
An ant farm??

daddy was just as excited,
if not more!

So he opened this one up too,
in order to figure out how to get the ants.

We discovered that after buying this kit,
you still have to buy the ants too!

So being the economical man he is...
he decided he would just get some out of the yard!
we have fire ants in our yard!
(we kill the nests as soon as we find them)
well apparently we hadn't gotten them all
or they came back...
so daddy went on the hunt.
(I was against this too,
but didn't want to buy ants either)

He made a make-shift case for the ants
to get them into the new farm.

So the transfer of the ants worked...

 They successfully transferred quite a few ants
into the farm and got the lid on it.

Then again, against my better judgement...
they brought it inside.
I would have preferred that they had spent
the night outside just in case they escaped.

They came in and joined our critter shelf...
right next to the aquarium and tadpole.

Within a day or so,
I received the news that all the ants were gone!

no one got bit...
I have no idea where they wound up
or how far they got...
but thankfully no one got bit!

So now we have an empty 
ant farm sitting on the critter ledge!

We all enjoyed watching our tadpole grow.
It was neat to watch his tail disappear.

We finally felt it was time to introduce him
to the big tank...
so we cautiously watched to make
sure he wouldn't get attacked!

He did great
and is enjoying his new home!

The new frog...

The original frog...

Daddy wants another one already!  
I think we are going to need a bigger tank!