Thanks for stopping by! We were a family of three, until we added one more (cat, that is), making us a family of four. In 2012, we added four more...one husband, two girls, and a dog. We have a full plate as a party of eight!

Adoption, blended families, pets, school, running...it's all here. Pull up a chair and read a while. After you do, please leave a little comment love! It makes me happy...and y'all know...if Momma is happy, then everyone is happy...at least at our house!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Moving Day

Today we finally got to move in to our new school! By new, I don't just mean that I have transferred to a different location. I mean it is a brand new school. Over the past week or so, I have been waiting less and less patiently for the go ahead to begin moving my classroom materials. Today was FINALLY the day. It took three full loads in the back of my mommy-van and countless trips in and out of the building, but everything has been moved. I could not have done it without Gloria's hard work. She pulled a wagon full of boxes every time I was pulling a hand truck full of more boxes. And she never complained, not once. Most of the time she had a smile on her face and was skipping down the hall, pulling the wagon behind her. (And of course, I didn't sweeten the deal with the offer of $5...not me...I would *never* do that in order to fend off complaints of "I'm hot" or "I'm tired" or "I'm sweaty"...Never...)

A few pictures to show what we accomplished today as well as the work I have ahead of me this week...

The first load of the day. There is a second row of those large boxes behind what you can see.

Gloria took the next five pictures to show all of the things we moved today. I think she did a pretty good job of getting the panoramic view!








Saturday, August 15, 2009

Feeling Sentimental

This afternoon, Gloria and I got to work cleaning her stroller so that I can sell it to the children's consignment shop. It had been in my parents' garage for about a year and a half and Mom had used it on walks with my nieces. I think Emmett (her cat) had been sleeping in it too. It had collected a good amount of dirt and dust, cat hair, and some cobwebs and needed a good scrubbing. It took Gloria two buckets of water and two rags to get the frame and wheels clean. I took all the pads off--the seat, basket, and canopy--which required the use of a screw driver at one point. It was like solving a puzzle to get everything off! Everything that could went into the washing machine.

I just finished getting it put back together, and other than a few scuffs the stroller looks really good. Looking at it makes me think of all the time I spent pushing Gloria in it...on walks, shopping at the mall, at Disney World, through the airports...countless hours...It is one of the last remaining pieces of my "baby" girl who has grown up into a "big" girl, ready to start first grade this week. Seeing it standing there in the corner, I'm not so sure I can give it up!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

What Ever Happened to the "Lazy Days" of Summer???

Today was anything but lazy. Really, our whole summer has been anything but lazy when I stop to think about it.

Today we...
headed out early so I could meet with Gloria's first grade teacher. She starts first grade in one week! From there, we headed to the last free summer movie (with a stop to get some treats to smuggle in deep down in my purse ;) ). Following the movie, we stopped at the library to get some new books for both of us. The next stop was the center where Gloria will attend before-school care this year. I needed to take them some paperwork and confirm her starting date. Then, off we went to Target. After our quick Target trip, we zipped across the street to the grocery store for a few things and finally headed home for a very late lunch. When I was finished with my lunch I sat down to take care of some telephone calls.

My first call was to the vet's office. Hannah Cat was in dire need of having her claws clipped. I can usually get the front ones done to the tune of much growling, hissing, yowling, and general carrying on from HC. But, I can't do her back paws and they were sporting some serious fishhooks. Turns out the vet's technician could see her today...if we could be there in 10-15 minutes. I promptly said yes and got off the phone. Hannah took one look at her carrier and went tearing up the stairs to hide under Gloria's dresser. It took almost 10 minutes and lots of hissing and gnashing of teeth to get her out and into the carrier. We ended up having to wait a little while, but we now have a cat with very short claws.

We dashed in the door from the vet trip to quickly change into gym clothes. There was a children's class that G wanted to particapate in at the Y this afternoon but we only had 15 minutes to change and get to the Y. We made it...just 5 minutes late...and both of us got to excercise this afternoon. Glo had a lot of fun in her class. I think they played some games and bounced around on the balance balls. I enjoyed 40 minutes by myself on the eliptical trainer and the indoor track. The pool was great after all of that!

Home for dinner, bath, and bed time. Whew! I'm ready for an early bedtime tonight and a lazy day tomorrow...I'll have to settle for the early bedtime though. Tomorrow is another busy day.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

A Quick Trip to the Beach

While we were in Florida, we also took a quick trip to the beach. We headed over to Vero Beach with my mom for one night. We had lots of fun playing in the sand. The water was really rough with lots of big, strong waves. (I have pictures that show how big the waves were, but I took them with my "real" camera and still need to get the film developed.) Gloria and I ventured into the water one time, but it lasted probably less than five minutes. We were happily jumping over the waves until one broke right on top of us and tossed us onto the sand. That was enough for Gloria, which was fine with me. My mom took quite the beating though as she kept trying to get out beyond where the waves were breaking. That just wasn't possible that afternoon. We met some friends for dinner that night. The next morning, we spent some more time on the beach and in the pool before heading back to Polk County. I love the beach and am glad we had a little time to spend in the sand this summer!

My mom and Gloria, playing shuffleboard before heading out to dinner.



I love this picture of the two of them watching the ocean!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Sea World

While on our vacation, we enjoyed a wonderful day at Sea World with an old friend of mine and her daughter! The day started gray and rainy. Gloria was so excited about seeing Shamu and the rest of the ocean animals that the prospect of rain didn't seem to dampen her mood too much. But the last of the raindrops fell as we drove into the parking lot and eventually the clouds gave way to lots of sunshine.

Gloria's favorite things at Sea World included the dolphin show, the sea lion and otter show, and the dolphin nursery. The highlight of her day, though, was sitting in the soak zone and getting drenched during the Shamu Rocks show that evening. The only reason I wasn't as wet as I otherwise might have been was the fact the G was sitting on my lap.

Let the day begin!

One of Gloria's favorite parts of the sea lion and otter show. She has retold this to many people.


Gloria tried to feed this sea lion some fish only to be frustrated by that bird (the white one that looks like it is standing on her head) swooping in and catching them after she tossed them. The bird caught all of the fish that G threw, so she was crying. A kind woman next to us offered us one of her fish. That time, the sea lion caught the fish...just in the nick of time!



Moments after Shamu soaked us. She was squealing and laughing...just ecstatic to have her one wish for the day granted.

We ended up staying until the park closed. Our day ended with some fireworks (the first ones that Gloria has ever seen in person instead of on tv...). It was truly a fantastic day!