Friday, July 20, 2012

Summer Fun

This past week has been a typical summer week for us. Lots going on but nothing to get overly excited about. Here are some of the highlights of our week.

I don't think I've introduced you to Shelly yet. Shelly is our pet turtle. We "adopted" her from our neighbors who went to live as missionaries in Costa Rica. We basically saved her from an untimely demise - they couldn't find anyone to take her and were going to have to release her in the wild (which would have killed her) and the kids were heartbroken and crying - did I mention that all of this took place in my kitchen the day before they moved out of their house? Well, I do have a heart and could not resist taking Shelly plus Emi promised me that she would feed her and help clean her cage - hahaha, like that's ever happened!! Well, she has grown a lot in the year that we've had her so this week we upgraded her to a new, much bigger cage and bought her a rock to rest on. When we first put the rock in she didn't know what to do with it - she was trying desperately to get that thing out of her cage! After 2 days she finally figured out that the rock was for lounging and she fell in love. She stays up there all day and I think she likes it - I am assuming this by the way she kicks her back legs out ;)

 The rock has the Shelly "leg of approval"

Jack got in a little tummy-time

Emi started tennis camp - she has found her sport. 
She LOVES tennis, now I am on the hunt for tennis lessons.

Jack got in some standing time. 
He is such a ham, he lights up as soon as he sees the camera :)

Emi completed her summer packet from Westminster to prepare her for 
First Grade - gulp, how did she get this old so fast?!?!

And of course, we did quite a bit of swimming :)

Hard to believe there are only 2 weeks of summer left!!

Saturday, July 14, 2012


We were not planning on taking a big vacation this year but we thought we would take 4 days off and head to Muscle Shoals, Alabama. The Marriott there is so wonderful for kids plus it is only 2 1/2 hours from our house which is nice because Jack has decided that he doesn't really like to be in the car anymore. 

Wednesday morning we woke up to this. lovely.

about an hour into our drive...
This was not looking good. We were really disappointed - it hadn't rained in over a month and of course it starts raining the day we left for vacation AND according to the weather report it was going to continue raining for the next week - awesome. But we pressed on hoping that our luck would change :)

the view from our patio. it's raining - boo!
 there was a brief break in the rain so we headed to the outdoor pool. That water is about 50 degrees and it was only 70 degrees outside so we opted for the hot tub :)
 Jack loved the hot tub - he would get so relaxed. He is always very tight and tense, it was weird to hold him when we has completely relaxed. I think we need a hot tub at home!!

It started raining again so we decided to head into Florence, AL to "explore". We had been told several times in the past to check out this little 50's style dinner and soda fountain shop. I will withhold the name because as soon as we stepped foot in there we wanted to leave. It was not the 50's style I had in mind, it had more of a 70's/80's decor, it was dirty and the ice cream wasn't even good. We won't be making a repeat visit but it got us out of the rain ;) 

We were really scrambling for things to do - if you can't be outside in Muscle Shoals then you may as well just go home. Everything is outdoors so we got crazy and headed to......

We have been debating all summer whether we should buy Jack a Puddle Jumper or not. I was against it because I didn't think he could do it and Brian thought he could. While killing time at Target we noticed that the Puddle Jumpers were on sale so we bought one to test out in the indoor pool at the hotel. 
 looking super cute!!
 he can totally do it all my himself!! you just have to hold his head up because he loves to drink the water - crazy boy!
 look! all by himself!!

Day 2
still raining - yay.
 after a quick swim in the indoor pool, I was desperately searching for things for us to do and came across the Children's Museum in Florence, Alabama so we packed up and headed over there. It wasn't anything spectacular but it was better than doing nothing!

Children's Museum of Florence, Alabama

They had the "Big" piano.
 Jack enjoyed playing the huge drum.
 Emi got in a little dress-up time.
 Some sweet kids put on a puppet show for Jack - he loved it.
 And they had awesome books like this to read. yikes!

After this little trip, it makes me appreciate what we have in Memphis a lot more!!!

Hanging out in the hotel room

That night we ate at the restaurant in the hotel, we sat on the patio - it was freezing and raining (shocker!) but it was still kind of a nice dinner. The food was great and I always like to listen to the rain just preferably not on my vacation ;)

Day 3 we decided to cut our losses and head home. The forecast was calling for rain for the next week and we had done everything there was to do indoors. So Brian and Emi headed to the indoor pool while I packed us up. As the bellhop was loading the last of our luggage on the cart I looked out the window to this
yep, that would be the sun. SERIOUSLY?!?!?! But we stuck with our decision and I am glad we did because the sun didn't last long and it has done nothing but rain on us since we've been home. Oh well, maybe we will have better luck on our next trip - it was nice to get to be together :)

Grilled Chocolate Banana Melts

We are not usually big dessert eaters unless it is a special occasion but lately I have been making desserts like crazy (thank you Pinterest). Emi and I made these the other night, they were scrumptious and so easy.

Grilled Chocolate Banana Melts
recipe by

pic by

1 banana, peeled
2 tablespoons mini-marshmallows
2 tablespoons semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons cinnamon toast crunch cereal, lightly crushed

1. Preheat grill to med-high heat or preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2.Slice banana lengthwise and slightly open. Place on a rectangle of aluminum foil.
3. Insert marshmallows and chocolate chips into sliced banana.
4. Wrap banana in foil and place on grill or in oven for 5-6 minutes.
5. Unwrap banana and top with cereal. Eat with a spoon.

It doesn't look like much but it was heavenly!!

Emi gets so annoyed with me always taking pictures ;)

Even Jack loved it and he doesn't like sweets - he seriously can't be my kid!!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Jack's P

When Jack started school back in the fall, his teachers were not thrilled that he was still using a paci. It's not that we were bad parents and just didn't want to hear him scream (which would be reason enough for me to let him keep it) but he is very oral and has to always have something in his mouth - if it's not his paci, it's his hands and he will literally chew the skin off of his hands so we had doctor's telling us to keep the paci and therapists telling us to get rid of it - awesome! Our wonderful Occupational Therapist at Farmington Elementary suggested that we try the "P". It's literally a plastic P that is meant for chewing. Well we tried it for 6 months and he had no interest but one day he just decided to go for it and it hasn't left his mouth since - not even to sleep :)

this picture makes me smile every time I see it :)

DIY Jewelry Holder

I have been wanting a jewelry holder for quite some time. Several people have "pinned" DIY instructions on Pinterest so I decided to make myself one. That's where I should have stopped and said to myself "No! you are crazy, just buy one. This will not turn out like the picture on Pinterest, put the supplies down and RUN out of Lowe's." But do I listen to myself - NO! 

I made them a few days ago and have recovered enough from my wounds (both physically and emotionally) to blog about it. 

Here was my awful Jewelry situation. Yes, that is a ziploc bag - I ran out of room in my bowl :) Obviously something needed to be done!

So, I gathered up my supplies and got to work. I must add that since it is summer and Emi is not in school she was with me as I was gathering supplies at Lowe's and insisted that "we" make her one as well. I bought chicken wire, 2 picture frames, picture hangers, cup hooks and a staple gun.

Emi couldn't find the color frame she wanted so we bought an unfinished frame and painted it with glitter blast spray paint. 

ready to paint!

Emi hard at work

first coat done

here is the finished picture of Emi's. I somehow missed some pics in between the first coat of spray paint and the finished product - oops ;) See that red stuff of the mallet? It's not my blood but it may as well have been - cutting that $#%& chicken wire almost killed me and I'm about 100% sure I need a tetanus shot after this little project. 

I used the picture hangers to hang her necklaces.

the cup hooks are for the bracelets

finished product. Now, I wanted to take that chicken wire and throw it out the window, the last thing I wanted to do was do this all over again. I mean, I barely had any skin left on my hands as it was! But I had started with Emi's (should've done mine first!) and I still wanted mine so I bravely pressed on.

finished mine BUT

when I turned it over the staples had ruined the finish of the frame - ughhhh!

I hung it up anyway and you can hardly tell - it just gives it that distressed look. Plus it's just going in my bathroom so no one is really going to ever see it :)

Yay, finally finished!!

I really need to find a support group for people who think they can handle these Pinterest projects!