Tuesday, March 27, 2012

reading pleasure

I just purchased 2 books online.
I can't wait till they arrive.
I pre-ordered the book "Heaven Is Here: An Incredible Story of Hope, Triumph, and Everyday Joy" by Stephanie Nielson.
To see her blog, click here.
The second book was Parenting With Love And Logic.
I hear this is an excellent book. My friend, who is a teacher, took the course, and highly recommends it. I hope to brush up on my parenting skills....mostly patience. Can't we all use some of that?
Speaking of books....
Cameron started reading the Hunger Games by
Suzanne Collins.
I have to admit I was kind of skeptical at first, because of the violence and what the whole story line is about. It sounds awful when you read some of the reviews about it. However, his teacher at school recommended the book and if anyone knows Cameron, well, he hates to read!! So, when he asked for us to buy him the book, I was thrilled. (this kid has never asked for a book in his whole life!)
Despite, the mixed reviews of this book, I think allowing him to read it will open up great conversation for us. Dusty took him this past weekend to get it. He even opted out of playing basketball at the park this weekend to read it!! Holy moly, I am amazed!!! He even comes home and goes to his room to R-E-A-D! There are about 7 kids in his classroom that are reading it and they plan to have a movie night after everyone finishes it (even the teacher wants to go).

The Hunger Games-
What parents need to know:
Parents need to know that this is a story about a reality show where 24 teens must kill one another until only one survives. They do so with spears, rocks, arrows, knives, fire, and by hand. It's not unduly gory, but there is lots of violence, all of it teen on teen.

Talk to your kids-Families can talk about the popularity of this series. Why has it struck such a chord with readers? Why are you interested in reading it?
Parents may want to address the many issues the author raises. How much of a stretch is it for people to see killing as entertainment? Which reality shows remind you of the one in this book?

"Hauntingly feasible, irresistible to put down, impossible to forget.
I am currently teaching it to my 7th grade class. We are exploring the social issues of poverty, classism, devaluing human life, and risks of extreme entertainment. Hunger Games has electrified discussions in understanding character motivation, thematic irony, the human condition, and societal injustices. Every kid has had something to say, and often their insight into why people do what they do is captivating. A powerful, edgy novel that motivates non-readers and stimulates the minds of the well read."

"Loved the book. Something I think should be said is that the violence is not sensationalized. Most of the children in the "Games" did not want to be there and are not out to kill the others, but to out-last and out-survive them. Very good book for discussion on society and government control."

"Hunger Games is a book with many messages meant to mirror problems in our own society, namely desensitization to violence on tv, reality tv shows that blur the lines between real human sufferring and being kicked off the island, war, famine, haves vs. havenots, just to mention a few. It's a though-provoking read, meant to be discussed and examined by children and their parents/teachers. These issues are alive and well in our own 'reality' and pose threats to our youth that cannot be swept under the rug. Hunger Games provides an entertaining, suspense-filled, well-written stage for these issues to be brought forth and examined with young people - with the hope that they can recognize and become part of the groups of people who work to end them. It's also a great way to look at the decadence of the Roman time period and draw parallels to both the book and our current "reality"."

I hope to keep you posted on how the reading and discussions go.

paint ball anyone?

Today, was yard day.
I mowed the backyard & Cee Cee, well...
this is how she rolls-
ballerina meets extreme paint-baller!


We are digging the Kroger's by our new house. Especially, Cee Cee....

She loves that she can get her own grocery cart and load up on her favorite treats. I wish I would have taken a before and after picture of her grocery cart. It was packed FULL of food.
Happy Shopping!

dream BiG

During Spring Break, we went out for lunch with some friends. During lunch, all the kids received balloons (Ugh! Balloons bug me...especially, when given before the meal arrives and then they become weapons). Well, before I could break the news to Caroline that we would have to pop it when we left,she surprised me by telling me she wanted to make a wish and send it off to her MiMi in Utah.
So, that's what we did. She went home and colored it, made a wish, and set it free.
What was her wish??? Of course, a 4 year old will tell you! Caroline wished that her MiMi would buy her a REAL HORSE!!!! (How's that MiMi?-Ha!)When Caroline wishes, she wishes BIG!!!

lunch date

Last week, we met with Dane & Kirsten for lunch. We went to Fish City Grill, in La Centerra. The food was great and we had a nice lunch sitting outside on the patio enjoying the cool weather.
Dusty got the shrimp & grits. His only complaint was they put too much butter and onions on it. I had the Mahi Mahi tacos and I thought they were pretty tasty. On a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate them a 7 overall.
I kind of went crazy taking pictures with the iphone. I love that I can whip out my iphone and snap some quick pictures of our outings. Sometimes carrying around my Nikon was a pain. After lunch, Cee Cee went and offered the ducks some crackers. The ducks weren't interested though. The waitress warned us before leaving the restaurant that the ducks were pretty well feed & spoiled from the restaurants in La Centerra always feeding them. Oh, well....I'm sure the birds enjoyed the crackers she threw out.

a much needed laugh

Today, while taking my Photoshop test online, I found this picture of Cameron. Oh my....it made me laugh, cry, smile, and laugh again. Man, has time flew by. I can't believe my baby is 9 and in just a few short months will be 10!!!! Holy Moly!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

new beginnings

Today, Cameron & Jake attended their new school.
Jake will finish out the 2nd grade & Cameron 4th.
The boys were pretty pooped when I picked them up from school today, but they said they had an AWESOME day.
Jake has already finished his homework for the week and is super pumped about starting a zoo animal project. They will be having Zoo night at his school next week. Cameron said his head was killing him from all the studying they did preparing for the STARR test, which will take place next week. Overall, I am beyond thrilled at what this school district has to offer our kiddos!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

oh, the house possibilities....

Offer 1-Forest Sage in Seven Meadows

We liked it, but didn't love it. It had been on the market one day and we decided to put a crazy offer on it. We offered 10 grand less than the asking price and we were told 2 days later that there were multiple offers. We were instructed to bring our best and final offer...since, we didn't love it, we only upped our offer by 2 grand. We never heard back from the other Realtor (so classy!), so we got the hint!

Offer #2:
Cove Hollow in Cornerstone Place

Dusty liked the house from the get go. He begged me for about a week for us to go look at it. I wouldn't even consider it. From looking at the pictures online, I hated it. However, I finally gave in and after jumping through some hoops to get an appointment (our Realtor was put on strict bed rest) we looked at it. As soon as we drove through the neighborhood, I wanted it! Plus, this house literally had a secret room in it!!! The sellers Realtor showed us the house, which I believe is where the entire process went wrong. Before we even left the neighborhood, I was on the phone with my Realtor requesting an offer be placed on the property. We had our offer submitted on Friday and figured we would hear something over the weekend. Well, on Saturday we were informed the Seller's Realtor didn't like our Lender we were using, so we immediately switched to their lender and got approved on a Saturday (fabulous Lender--highly recommended), only to find out on Sunday afternoon another offer was being considered! On Sunday evening, we were told they accepted the other offer. This was a hard loss. We thought, at the time, we really wanted this house and it would be such a great fit for our family. For 3 days after, we were bummed and didn't even want to consider looking at other properties.

Offer #3:
Wickerhill Way in Cinco Ranch

After recovering from House Offer #2, we hit the streets again. We both really liked this house. It was finally a one story (which we really wanted) and it was in a really great neighborhood. The house was great on the inside, however, the backyard was pretty small. But, at this point we didn't care. It had the square footage, it was one story, amazing schools, a huge kitchen with granite counters, and a fairly open concept. The price was higher than we wanted, but we really liked it and we felt like this house could really fit our family.
However, the problem with this house was that it had multiple offers on it, but the sellers wanted someone that would do a lease back deal with them until the end of the school year. Out of all the offers on the table, no one would commit to it. So, after much thought, Dusty and I decided YEP we would do it. So, as I was about to sign all the contract paperwork, we received the call that they had accepted an offer that was already on the table. UGH!!! REALLY? ARE YOU KIDDING ME??
For awhile, I swear that someone had a voodoo doll going on us. How could this be?? Wasn't it a buyers market out there??? Shouldn't we be so happy that we are out house hunting? I mean we have been dreaming of this day for the longest time! Now, we were so sick of looking at houses! How could this be that we had lost 3 houses to other contracts?

Offer #4-

Photo & story coming soon....

Monday, March 19, 2012


It's official! We have moved! Our old home SOLD and we are getting settled in our new CASA! We have been in our new house a little over a week now and we have been SUPER busy unpacking and shopping for new house stuff. Here's a short list of what we have been up too:
-unpacked a billion boxes
-spent 3 hours at Rooms to Go picking out the perfect family room furniture
-had to wait 4 days to get furniture to sit on (because we trashed our old living room furniture).
-spent 2 1/2 hours at Best Buy selecting a washer, dryer, and refrigerator. Only to wait 6 days to have it delivered.
-Ate out way toooooo much! I never thought eating out for breakfast, lunch, and dinner would get old. I think the restaurant, 9ers, knows us by name.
-bought Cee Cee a new queen size bed (even though I made a deal with the furniture man for a full size bed. Lucky for us that he packaged up the wrong size bed.)
-painted the game room & placed a huge Fat Head Saints football helmet on the wall.

So far we are loving our new house and neighborhood! One day I promise to post some pictures of our new house.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

lazy spring break

Spring Break was last week for us.
The boys spent most of the week playing basketball in the drive way and Caroline was their cheerleader.
On one of the days, the boys held a car wash.
They raked in $40 bucks!
The cost was $3 for a wash and $5 for vacuuming.
Most of the stoppers were really good tippers and I enjoyed getting to know everyone in the neighborhood.
I didn't take any pictures of our lazy Spring Break, but I did grab this one on my iphone....