My Reasons

My Reasons

This Is Where It All Begins

This Is Where It All Begins

Monday, May 23, 2016

lukie turns 4!

Our little Lukie turned 4 yesterday.  We decided that since his cousins were here on Saturday, that we would have his party, and celebrate his Birthday on that day instead.  Luke didn't seem to mind.

He has been asking when his Birthday is for almost a month now, so when I told him the night before that the next morning would be his Birthday, he almost didn't believe me!  The poor kid has waited for an eternity in kid time.

He woke up to balloons and streamers, and knew it was the real deal!  He was very, very excited.  We let him open presents throughout the day, to try to spread it out, and he went nuts over each one.  He is VERY in police stuff right now, and he got a full police outfit, complete with a hat.  He was beyond happy.  He hasn't taken it off since, aside from church, and even then, we almost had to call in a hostage negotiator to help us convince him to take the thing off!

Luke played hard all morning, up until his party.  He invited 4 friends from the neighborhood.

I am not sure what on earth happened, but the second his friends walked in, Luke transformed into a complete monster.  He started screaming, freaking out, yelling at people, and throwing fits.  It is not like Luke at all, and it was terrible.

We tried to play a few get the dog food (whoppers candy) from one dish to the other..

and "I have a little doggy and he won't bite you,"
Luke calmed down a little for the games, but both games ended in disaster with Luke freaking out.
It was pretty weird.
I think he had already just had so much chaos the past few days, and it was finally catching up to him.

We gave the kids their cupcakes
Beckham, Evelyn, Luke Phillips, Eli, Luke and Boston (not in picture)
and their paw patrol masks
and we were about to attempt another game, but Luke grabbed a blanket and a pillow, laid down in the middle of everyone, turned on Paw Patrol, and demanded that everyone "be quiet and stop talking."

Luke fell asleep within 5 minutes.

His friends just hung out, played with Luke's new toys, and ate cupcakes, until the party was over.

Geesh!  This is a party for the books!

Once Luke woke up, and everyone was gone, he was much happier, and he got to open the much anticipated police helicopter!

He played police the rest of the day.
Eli, Luke Phillips, and Lukie

On Sunday, his actual Birthday, we did his Birthday cake, and sang to him.  We also went around the family and told Luke what we love about him.

Paw Patrol Cake and Police officer Luke
 Luke is ALL boy. He has loads of energy, and loves to dress up as a police officer, ninja, cowboy, construction worker, and fireman, and play all day.  He is a happy kid, and is hilarious.  He asks loads of questions every day, and is very curious.  He has the cutest little blue eyes, adorable smattering of freckles across his nose, white blonde hair, and the tiniest little body.  He is fun-loving, happy, cute and brings so much life to our home.

We love Luke so much! 

Happy 4th Birthday Lukie!

it's coming together

And the yard work continues....

I was out walking around the yard a while ago, wishing that the deep trench, filled with rocks and weeds, would just finally be turned into the beautiful dry river I had imagined in my head.

Then it hit me....what was I waiting for!!!  Forget paying someone hundreds of dollars, I could just do it myself.

So, I got on google, figured out how to do it, and went to work.

And I worked, and worked and worked.

I hauled rock for about 5 days, before it was finally completed.

It was HARD work, but I loved it.  Working outside is so refreshing for the soul.

starting out the dry river

weed barrier is down, and border is have to fill in the rocks

The rocks are finally all in place, and the flowers are planted around it.  The big, big boulders should be here today, or tomorrow, and the bridge should be here by the end of the week!!!  I can't wait to post the finished product!!!

In other yard news...I chizzled rock for almost 3 hours, in order to plant these 3 bushes.  Seriously, we have no dirt...just rock.  Lots and lots of rock.  At one point, after hitting my 100th rock and jamming my finger again,  I got so frustrated, that I screamed and threw the shovel.  My neighbor came out to see what was going on.  I felt really cool.
I have some very fun finishing touches to do in this flower bed as well.  Hopefully by the end of this week, I will have some pictures of this finished product as well.

Along with this...I began planting our row of lilac bushes.  Once I planted these, the yard officially felt like "my yard."  Lilac bushes are my all time favorite!!  The smell of them throws me back to my childhood summers.  I am so excited about these!  The picture is bad, but so far, I have about half of them planted.  I smile every time I look out the window and see these.

Last, but not least, we are FINALLY putting in our parking strip.

Because we live on a corner, we have 120 yards of parking strip to put in.  Most people have about 10-20 yards.  Go us.

We decided to lay down weed barrier, and cover it with gravel type rock. Planting grass in it would be an absolute mowing nightmare.  We do plan to eventually plant trees in it, but that will probably be next year.

Ben rented a skid steer, and had the rock delivered on Friday.  Ummm yea, we spent two summers removing rock, in order to get our grass in, I spent the last two weeks, hauling that rock back into the yard to make a dry river, and now, we are PAYING for rock to cover the parking strip.  I didn't know if I wanted to cheer or cry when I saw the giant truck pouring rock in front of our yard.  The boys loved it!
The truck brining in rock...oh, and you can see the dry river completely filled in too.

The irony with the rock kills me.  Seriously.

Ben spent Saturday lying down the weed barrier and dumping rock into the parking strip. 
What a man!!!

 The next two days will be spent evening out the rock in the parking strip...and then, aside from the trees, it will be done!!
I am so excited for this weekend, to have so many completed projects. 
The last project for this year will be re doing the rock wall around our house, and planting bushes on top of it.
Next year will be trees, flowers, shrubs and cement where we need it.
It is finally all coming together!!!


Sammy boy had his last Soccer game on Saturday.

I am blown away with how far he has come with the sport since the beginning of the season.

He has learned so much, and is a lot more aggressive and confident.  He was on the perfect team for him, and his coaches have been wonderful.  I feel like he was very blessed to be on such a great team with good kids and coaches.

Sam plays defense, so he hasn't been able to score any goals this season.  He has had a lot of great saves and blocks, but every little boy wants to be able to score a goal.

During their last game, Sam's team was way ahead, so the coach decided to let the boys play different positions, for fun.

She let Sam play forward. 

As soon as I saw what was going on, I said a prayer in my heart for Sam to be able to score a goal.  Just one goal.  I knew how much it would mean to him to be able to score a goal this season, and how much it would boost his self confidence with soccer.  I prayed and prayed.

I knew Sam had the ability and the speed to do it, it was just a matter of him believing in himself.

Within minutes of ending my prayer, Sam stole the ball and began dribbling down the field.  He passed to his team mate, who dribbled a little further, then passed back to Sam. Sam did a corner shot into the goal and scored!!!!  The grin and elation on his little face, made me cry.  I was so happy for him, and for this chance he was given.

Not only did he score, but it was an awesome play and an awesome shot!

What a way to end the season!

Sam was beaming the rest of the game, and was thrilled to finally get the king size candybar that is handed out at the end of the game for those who scored goals.

Tryouts for next year are today and tomorrow, and Sam is going into them with great confidence and a lot more skill than last year.

Go Sammy!
U9 STORM -white

cousin time

Devin's kids, Eli and Lacey, came up for a visit this weekend.  Devin had a lot going on with his Dental School, and Nichole had a family trip, so they asked me to watch their kiddos for a few days.

Last minute, Grandma Sylvia decided to come up and help.  She is a good, good woman.

Eli and Luke played, and played and played.  They were cowboys, good guys, bad guys, police, cats, ninja's, and everything else.  They were loud, they were crazy, they were destructive, and they were boys.  They had a blast!

Molly enjoyed treating Lacey like a real baby doll.  It was pretty cute watching her follow her around and give her her blanket and binky over and over again.

Lacey cried the entire first night, and Eli threw up the entire second night, so I am VERY grateful my mom was here.

It was absolutely crazy and chaotic, but I am so glad the cousins were able to play together.  Some of my absolute best memories of growing up are with cousins.  Looking back, I am sure we drove our mom's/aunts/grandparents crazy, but they continued to get us together, because it was worth it.  I am beginning to understand that now.

Cousins rock.

Eli MUST be touching Luke at all times.

Molly and Lacey

best buddies

Blasting off in the rocket ship.  hahaha!

dad is the bomb

A few weeks ago, Mary came home from school with a paper announcing that she would be going on a field trip.  The paper also had a spot for parents to sign up to be a chaperone.

I was surprised when Mary walked over to Ben and asked him to go on the field trip.  It shocked me a little that she didn't ask me, but it melted my heart that she wanted to go with her dad.

Ben made arrangements, got work off, and was able to go!  What a cool dad.

I was so happy that Ben and Mary could do this together.

They went to a baseball game, and Ben was in charge of a group of kids.

It sounds like they had a great time, and it meant so much to Mary.

I love it!
He even rode the bus!  Super dad!

in a "jam"

Last week, I ventured off to Walmart, with the three littles in tow.

Walmart with three small children is always an adventure, but it has to be done, so we make the best of it.

On this particular outing, as I was getting Molly out of her car seat when we arrived at the store, William was playing with the door of the car.

Somehow, in a way only a child can do, he flipped the locking mechanism, and completely jammed it.  It was sticking out of the door in a way the completely prevented the door from shutting.

I worked on it for about 10 minutes, in a busy parking lot, while trying to keep the kids from running in front of cars, chasing birds, going through my purse, and so on.  It was quite the scene for sure.

I was not able to fix the door, so I gathered up the kids, did my best to make the door look like it was closed, and did a very fast shopping trip, praying the no one would steal our car. The perks of living in a small town. :)

Once we finished shopping, to my relief, the car was still there.  The next dilemma was figuring out if we should sit there waiting for Ben to drive 45 minutes to help us, call a car shop that would be crazy expensive, or try to make the 3 mile trip home with a door that won't shut.

The kids were tired and hungry, so they basically answered the question for me.  We had to get home.  I tried to find some way to tie the door shut, but nothing was working, so I buckled the kids in their seats, and asked William to hold the door shut while I drove us SLOWLY home.

William was completely freaking out, and screaming that we were all doing to be sucked out of the car and die. 

I talked to him for a while, and told him that I trusted his super strong muscles to be able to hold the door shut, which would make him a hero that saved his family from being sucked into outer space for the rest of our lives.

He wiped away his tears, puffed out his chest, and accepted the challenge.

We drove home going less than 5 miles per hour like this...

William is holding the door shut.
We crawled into our garage, and arrived home safely.  William was extremely proud of himself, and although I was frustrated that he broke the door in the first place, I was proud of him too.

Ben got home later that day, and fixed the door within 5 minutes.  What the????

Never a dull moment.

Rock on.

bed head

Molly has quite the amazing head of hair.  Not only is it brown...which is completely crazy being part of our family, but it is wavy, curly, and ALL over the place!

I do my best to contain it in ponytails every day, but not matter what I do, she wakes up every morning, and every afternoon after her nap, with the most amazing bed head ever!  Seriously, she should get some type of award or something for this.

I love this girl so much, crazy hair and all!

m & e's bakery

Mary, and her best friend Eden are quite the little bakers.  They almost always bake something in the middle of jumping on the trampoline, roller blading, riding bikes, painting nails, making movies, and anything else they may be doing.

A while ago, they decided to start up M & E's Bakery.  (Mary and Eden's Bakery)

They went around the neighborhood taking orders, then they went to Eden's house, baked up all of the cupcake orders, and delivered warm, fresh cupcakes to everyone who ordered some.

The response was amazing! People LOVED the cupcakes!!! 

They only sold to one street, and they made $35.

These girls are adorable...and quite the business women.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

for real!

The other day, I was cooking something on the stove, and something started smelling like burnt metal.  Nothing was smoking, and I looked all over the kitchen.  Everything seemed fine.

Then, the stove just shut off.  And that was that.  The stove was dead.

The next couple days I quickly realized how much I actually use the stove, and it became pretty frustrating.  Ben decided to call someone to come look at it, but we decided to move it away from the wall, and just see if we could see anything behind it in the wiring.

Ben started scooting the stove away from the wall, and all the sudden there was a big "POP" and sparks and embers were flying everywhere.  It was like someone lit a firework behind the stove! 

It was nuts!!!  What the?!?!?
We grabbed towels and started beating out the sparks on the wood floor and the whole kitchen was enveloped in a horrible burnt metal smell. 

Luckily we got it under control, and began getting the stink out of the house.

I figured the stove was done for.  Bye bye stove.

A dude came over last night to look at the stove, and he literally laughed when we saw what had happened.  It was that bad. The wiring had burnt so badly that the metal parts had completely welded to the back of the oven, and the main wire that plugs into the house was completely fried.  There was some serious fire and heat back there.

The creepy part of the whole was all due to loose faulty wiring.  Stuff like that burns houses down!  Geeze!  Our oven is only a couple year old people!

 I didn't know whether to be furious or to be relieved that nothing worse happened.  I choose the latter and gave up my hope of a new double oven for mothers day tomorrow (hahaha).

I am happy to now have my oven back, and even more happy that our house isn't burn to the ground because a bolt wasn't screwed in tight enough. 

And life moves on.....


William's foot has finally healed enough for him to play soccer.

Sadly, today was his last game.

The weather isn't great, so Ben took him to his game, and I stayed with the other kids.

After hearing about this game, I wish more than anything I had been there.

According to Ben:   The game started out with 2 against 2.  Not sure where all of the kids were, but it was a small game.  William's other team mate, was a little girl, who didn't really have a clue what she was doing.  She was kicking the ball the wrong way, and kind of just messing around.

The first half of the game, the other team scored 5 goals, Williams team scored none.

The second half started, and the girl on Williams team didn't go back in, so it was William against 2 kids from the other team.  In Williams words, "it was just one human against 2 humans"

Ben said that something inside William just clicked and he completely unleashed.

He was blocking passes, dribbling down the field, scoring goals, sliding in the mud to protect his goal, and running like crazy.
William is in the yellow with his hood on his head

he blocked this kick

William is in the yellow

William scored 6 goals in the second half and won the game!!!!

This didn't come easy, because a kid on the other team was really good, and William really had to fight.


All I could do was laugh and laugh as Ben was telling me this.

He said that William just turned into an animal and was all over the field.  He played with skill and toughness and did phenomenal!

He had a whole month of missed soccer games to make up for I guess.

Oh man, I love my big buddy so much.  I can't wait to see him continue to grow and develop.  His big body and big heart are capable of doing big things.

Way to go William!


Mary and I went to a mother/daughter date night at the church last night.  The activity day girls put it on for Mother's day.

We played a game where we were asked questions, and we had to write down what we thought the other person would answer. 

For example:

They would ask Mary what my favorite color is.  And ask me what Mary's favorite color is.
We would both write down the answer, and then show it to each other at the same time.
Each time we got it right, we got a point.

There were 20 questions, and some of them were pretty tricky.  You really had to know each other.

Mary and I won the game, by getting 17 of them right.

As we sat there playing the game, I felt my heart getting so warm with the fact that Mary and I really do know each other.  We have open communication and we have trust.  Mary is my daughter and I am her mother and parent, but we have also established a friendship.

I have always hoped to have this with my children.  Of course, I am the parent, and I am usually the bad guy, but I also really want my children to feel like I am on their side, I am their friend, and they can come to me.  I want to be able to laugh with them, hang out with them, and have fun with them.

It felt so good to see that, at this point in time, Mary and I have that connection starting to blossom. I can only hope and pray that is continues to grow.
 She is a sweet girl, and she is growing up in a hard world.  I am so grateful that she has chosen to turn to me and to trust in me to help guide her through it, even if I don't really feel like I know what I am doing myself.

I love my little Mary girl so much.  I am very blessed to be a mother.
Mary made this for me and gave it to me on our date.

this was actually taken this morning, after the gym, so I look terrible.  Mary is so cute though.