Happy 10 months sweet Piper Jane! I was a little too sick and lazy to upload pics from the camera so I just sent one over from my phone. This is actually pretty much what Sissy has looked like the last two days because mommy has been sick. I wasn't able to hold her much at all yesterday because I was BAD sick and she was not happy about it. Piper's favorite things are playing with the Wiggle's guitar, her music table, exploring her brother's toys and eating dropped french fries under the table. Well, actually eating anything found on the floor whether it's edible or not. Bad Piper! She LOVES to be comforted by her Hippo or her monkey while she sucks her thumb. It just may be the sweetest thing ever! We love you Piper!
So most of you may think I'm ridiculously sappy but I have had the most incredible evening. I was laying in bed with a terrible headache and really upset stomach, just the beginnings of what has turned out to be the full fledged stomach bug:(. What could possibly have made it a good evening you ask... I got a phone call that I've prayed about for years now. Lamar got my number from another student who I taught at Jacksonville and called me tonight. I was sick so I didn't answer but I listened to the voicemail and immediately began to cry. His voicemail said, "Hey Jenny, this is one of your favorite students from Jacksonville... call me back.. I bet you can guess who it is". Headache, stomachache and all I called him back. Now my head hurts even more from crying! The Lord has blessed me SO much by allowing me a peek into my students' lives. My heart has been forever burdened for my Jacksonville kids and I pray for them so much. A couple Sundays ago I was in church flipping to the scripture and found a note from Terrell and immediately started to cry. God has used those students to teach me to never give up on people, to pour myself into them and get way too attached and involved because it is my job to make a difference and He will use me to do that. Lamar is doing wonderful. He's getting married in June to a lovely lady. He has a sweet little boy named Lamar Jr. We talked about some of my other students and just about how much I cared about them all. Lamar said he still talked about me a lot and knew that I was one of the only ones who cared. Thank you Lord for the blessings you've poured over Lamar and his family and thank you SO much for letting me catch up with him. I SO miss teaching at Jacksonville!
Parker had a wonderful time bowling! He was extra EXCITED about everything! He got some really fun presents that he's not put down! His cake was super cute and delicious! All the kids had fun bowling and even a few adults got in on the bowling action!
The sheet rock guys are busily stirring up dust in the house. When they got here Parker went up to them and said, "it's my birthday!" I guess he's kind of right since his party is today. A few minutes later he asked Cameron, "are they speaking Spanish?"
Andrew said, "mom, do you want to hear a joke?" I said, "sure". He said, "Why does the bear and fox want to play the wii?" I said, "why?" He said, "to get to the other level". haha.... I think there were some hidden messages in that joke about what Andrew is wanting to do.
We've been in a money dilemma while searching for a vanity/sink. They're just SO darn expensive!! There's actually a discount store right up the road from us that sells plain jain, cheap cabinets. I really didn't want to buy one of them b/c they just weren't pretty BUT we certainly didn't want to spend well over $600.00 on it. I've been searching Craigslist and the classifieds and came across a man who has a warehouse full of all kinds of good stuff for CHEAP:). Tonight we went and picked out a vanity and a granite top. We also got a medicine cabinet with a mirror and a light to go over the tub. The items the man has for sale are all new, some with dings but many that were just special ordered and brought back or discontinued. The vanity we bought was a store display model. We ended up spending $285.00 on everything! We were super excited!
It's been a DAY for me... it all began when I remembered that my dad had told me we needed to make sure to put some insulation on the outside of the house right under the roofing before the siding was put up. Cam had already gone to work which meant the dirty job belonged to me. SOoooooo... before going to work this morning, I put in some hard labor as a insulator. Did you know it was below 30 degrees this morning? Believe me... it was! So here's the run down.... I had to maneuver our 12 ft ladder down from the garage wall (okay, Cam says it's really 8 ft but does that really matter?). I then had to cut pieces of insulation to fit the areas I was needing to insulate... here comes the scary part... finding a flat part of the ground to lean the ladder against. Being the alarmist I am, I was preparing for a fall. I was holding on dearly to that puffy, itchy stuff hoping it would help break my fall. Fortunately, I didn't fall BUT I did come close to freezing to death AND I am still ITCHING horribly. I think I got a little in my eye, too. It's been killing me all day. Here's the kicker.... if you'll notice in the pics below our siding guy never got up to the top of the house!!!!! WHAT? I froze and almost died for nothing. Say it aint so!
Tomorrow our siding guy is going to start siding the add on. We're actually having him side the new addition and all of the back. Ghetto as it may be... we're waiting to get the rest that needs to be sided re-sided next year. It's just not in our budget AND it'll still match, it just won't be new. Our sheet rock guy was suppose to start Tuesday but is now not starting until Friday or Saturday. The electrician came and did everything he can do until it's painted and my dad and mom finished the insulation work earlier this week. Talk about cheap labor;)... but I did feed them spaghetti when they were finished. I'm guesstimating we'll be painting and flooring in about 2 weeks. We'll see... I'll leave you with a picture of my brother-in-laws doggies. My mother-in-law made them some nice, warm jammies. Aren't they sweet?
Parker turned 4 years old today! It's so hard to believe. I LOVE My little Parker. He's a bundle of joy! He is the MOST energetic, passionate being I've ever met. Honestly! I am sure God has great plans for his future. I pray so much that He will grow to be a man of God. I think he is gifted in such a way that he could be used to lead many. We love you Parker! You light up our entire home!
Although his party isn't until this weekend, we took him out tonight for some Larry's Pizza. We all had a great time celebrating Parker!
The boys made several Valentine cards yesterday. They had so much fun. Here's a picture of several of them. Also, I just had to show off Piper's new swimsuit. Isn't it the cutest? I LOVE it because it has long sleeves which means much less sunscreen will have to be slathered all over her. She also got a cute hat to wear while she's pool side:). I CAN'T wait until it's time for swimming.
Cameron and I are officially CHEAP! Cameron got a $75.00 gift card from work for the Gap. We were so excited about it because we know how expensive the Gap is and thought this would be our chance to spend money on something nice without really spending our own money. We were both like... "WHAT... they want how much for this?" We couldn't even spend somebody else's money! Pathetic... just pathetic! My cousin Amy would be so ashamed of me. So what did we do with the $75.00.. well, Piper got some really cute things from Baby Gap:). I told her she better enjoy because this is the only time mommy will spend full price for any Gap clothes for her. We did spend a little money on ourselves... we bought a couple of YUMMY cookies from the Great American Cookie Company. Who needs new clothes anyway;)? Oh and did I mention we thought we were going to be shot like 8 times at the mall. That's one scary place to go on the weekends. Hope you had a great Valentines!
Last week our school celebrated Green Week. We literally reduced our trash by over 60% by having all the kids/teachers bring reusable water bottles everyday for lunch and instead of ziplock bags for sandwiches, use a sandwich container, etc. How do we know we reduced trash by over 60%... they measured pre and post. Our poor counselor was the Chairman of measuring trash and let me tell you... it was one NASTY job. Anyway... our entire student body formed the earth. Here's a pic. My favorite part of the picture is one of our teacher's holding back the little tree so it's not in the picture. What a tree hugger:) Also, I'm trying to help my students remember some important Math facts so we're making up songs and videos to help them recall them. Yes, I got their parent's permission before uploading to Youtube. The kids are super excited about it:) So, if you're needing to learn your odd and even numbers, you should check out the video below;).
I've been reading my cousins wife's blog... and she's really got me thinking. I've been wanting to cut back a lot on our spending but have been lazy with it. I think because we don't really live paycheck to paycheck right now that it's easy to get lazy with our finances. Cameron and I do really well in the area of shopping, we rarely go and rarely, rarely spend money on clothes, etc. I'm as cheap as they get... ask my cousin. Anywho.. reading Niki's blog made me want to evaluate our spending and get a good look at how much we waste on eating out and such. I'm only admitting to all of this on the Internet because I think it's the best way for me to be accountable for the waste. I created a spreadsheet with the amount of money we spent last month eating out and it was astronomical. Sure, there was a week that Cam didn't have his regular paninis/lunch meat for lunch b/c we didn't make it to the grocery store so he had to (sarcasm added) eat out at Chik-fila way too many times. I'm not innocent either because I went to a baby shower at Mike's Place and racked up a $15.00 bill that we normally wouldn't have:(. The total for the month was right at $300.00. WHAT??? Eating out... $300.00. Our grocery bill for the month was $450.00 but it was probably less than that if you deduct other things we may have purchased on the trip to Wal-Mart. We're going to be very conscientious this month and cut back a lot!! We've decided it's okay if we go out for lunch once a week but we better be taking a can of Sprite and asking for a cup of ice:).
Here's a little bit more progress on the renovations. They've cut a hole in the wall but we can't put a door in until the electrical and sheet rock work is finished. Hopefully that will be done this week but our electrical guy has tons of work so is just scheduling us in when he can. I won't complain... I mean, he is family! The roofers came and finished up yesterday:). We also have our window put in. It's SO exciting! I'm thinking it will be a good month before we're able to move into it.
Since we were adding onto the house, we had to take down our dish network. I called them to see if they would come out and move our satellite to another part of the house. They said they would BUT it would cost us $100! WHAT? We've had service with them for years!! I told them never mind we would call DirectTV and they would come install service for us for free. They then told me they could do it for $50. Finally, they told us they could do it for free but then I was already mad. So, we decided to cancel anyway. Now we're contemplating not getting satellite at all for a while. We seriously have not had the t.v. on hardly at all for over a week. The boys have done great with it. Cam and I enjoy it, however, we do so desperately miss DVR. We LOVE to rewind when the news anchors have blunders... seriously... we LOVE that! It's like we watch the news to see if they're looking at the wrong camera or the picture doesn't match the story:).. makes me giggle just thinking about it:).
So, do you have satellite? We'll be saving over $50.00 a month by not partaking of this luxury. Also, do you cut your grocery bill in half by using the Kroger/Walgreen coupon stuff? I use coupons but I don't spend a lot of time with this and know I could do much better but how much time is involved? I mean, I guess that free time I'll have from not rewinding the news anchor blunders could be used organizing coupons/grocery list... just doesn't sound near as fun as laughing at blunders:(
They've been busy around here! My Uncle David is our builder and he and his guys are doing a fabulous job! People are definitely talented in different ways and these men are very talented in what they do!
Here's a picture of the back of the house. I can't wait to see it when the roofing/siding is on!!! My cousins are roofers... so lucky to have such a handy family. Did I mention my other cousin is our electrician?! :) Oh... and I have heard from a couple men that we should be under
budget, I'm not really counting on it but OHHHH... how nice would that be? I'm just hoping to not go over our budget.
This is a picture of the toilet area and the closet/storm room.
This is where the bathtub will go:)... this is what I'm the MOST excited about!!
Here's our bedroom. There will be a pocket (hidden) door between our bedroom and bathroom.. that's what the horizontal boards by the opening are for, the door will slide in there.
The builders came this morning, bright and early, to work on the house and this is what they got done. We're SUPER excited about it... Also, the whole you see in our room is for the window, just in case you wondered:)
We do:) They poured our slab today and they'll start framing tomorrow:). We're all excited about it! One of the things we're really looking forward to is extending the roof and covering our back porch. I'm really excited about this because, even if it's raining, the kids can play on the porch.
Piper has two little stuffed animals that she is quite fond of. Her cousins Aubrie and Chloe got them for her when she was born. She loves to sleep with them, squish her face in them, snuggle them, carry them around, etc. I'm sure her little monkey and hippopotamus will be around for a long time:).
I am married to a wonderful man named Cameron. We love to laugh and do so often! We have 3 children who bring us more joy than we could've imagined. We're currently in the process of adopting a little girl from Ethiopia. We cannot wait to bring her home!