Tuesday, December 27, 2011

UT Men's Basketball Game

The Tuesday before Christmas Caleb had the opportunity to be a ball boy for the UT Men's basketball game. They should be called towel boys instead b/c they never actually touch a ball anymore. Caleb had a great time. We had to be at Thompson Bolin Arena at 5:30 and the game didn't tip off until 7:00. He was able to meet the team and watch them warm-up and he got to meet Smokey! He even got a special shirt to wear though it was more like a dress on him. He was so excited! It was the first game I had ever been too. Matt and I had a really good time watching them play...at first we weren't doing so hot but finally took the lead with about 10 minutes left in the game and ended up winning! Caleb enjoyed all of it and asked if he could do it again! Hope and Chris attended the game too and Chris was able to get some good pictures too...I gotta get their memory card so I can download those pictures.

The team warming-up

Sitting down under the goal waiting to wipe the floor

Wiping up the sweat!

This was his favorite part...getting to use the mop!

Santa made an appearance sporting a beautiful orange suit (he needs to put on a few pounds though)!


Saturday, December 17, 2011

Santa at Creekside Nursery

Each year we go and visit Santa at Creekside Nursery with the Tomlinson's however this year we went on Saturday with Quinn b/c we wanted to get a picture of all the kids. Madison and Quinn had matching outfits which Madison thought was great. This is always a really good experience and the kids love that Santa has his sleigh and reindeer with him! The owners go to church with us so we normally see lots of people from Laurel. The staff at the nursery serves cookies, hot chocolate and cider...this year they even had hot dogs!

Quinn wasn't the least bit scared

All the kids

Madison telling Santa what she wants

Caleb's turn...he asked for an ipad (insert my laughter) which was better than the baby brother he wanted to ask for (I told him Santa doesn't bring babies or live animals)

And finally my Taylor (wonder how many more yrs she will sit on Santa's lap)

Quinn went home with us afterwards while her parents went to the UT Men's basketball game and dinner. The following picture Caleb took of Quinn clapping while we were riding home and he thought it was "blog worthy" :)

Monday, November 28, 2011

November 2011

We have been so busy this month. Taylor's tennis matches are over with her team at school but she still has tennis 2 days a week. This is the 1st winter that we aren't taking a break but instead of Monday, Thursday and Saturday it will just be Thursday and Saturday. Caleb is still taking but is going to take a break for 3 months. Madison is looking forward to starting tennis in the spring.

Taylor and Madison are both in scouts now and are gearing up for cookie sales which start in January. This is early for this region...normally it is February. Caleb isn't involved in scouts this year. We haven't been able to find a good den for him...I am going to keep looking though as we think scouts is a good thing for the kids to be involved in.

We have been in enjoying the warm weather...I know the cold is coming. I remember last year this was how fall was and we had a pretty bad winter so I am preparing myself. There are so many leaves to rake but the rain has put a halt to it for the time being...just too wet!

Caleb missed the only 2 days of school they had the week of Thanksgiving. He said his throat hurt and turns out he had strep. He know will be seeing an ENT on Friday to talk about taking out his adenoids/tonsils. We knew this was probably going to happen eventually and probably should have been done before now but we had kinda hoped he would grow out of it. Hopefully we can get it scheduled for the week after Christmas so he won't have to miss school.

I have been using my camera on my phone to take lots of pictures and don't know how to load them to my computer. Madison finally lost her 1st tooth! She was so excited. Sadly, I have misplaced the tooth so the tooth fairy hasn't visited yet. We may have to put a note for the tooth fairy under the pillow but Madison really doesn't want to do that. Matt pulled it Thanksgiving morning and we put it in a bag and I figure with all the company coming that we have just put it somewhere safe...now if I can only remember where :)

We had 2 Thanksgiving dinners on Thursday. First with my family and then later that evening with all of Matt's family. It was fun...I didn't get any pictures on my camera except at Matt's family gathering. Quinn looked adorable as a turkey and if we are friends on fb then you saw the picture.

Don had the best shirt..."Does this suit make me look fat?"

We enjoyed playing cards all weekend and eating. Sunday after everyone was gone we put the tree up...well the tree and lights. The kids went to bed early so we weren't able to decorate it. The kids got homework done quickly so they could decorate it Monday evening. And this year I let them do it all. I didn't even go back and fix any ornaments after they went to bed. The presents are already spilling out from under the tree :)

My helpful elves...

Please ignore the lack of pj's on the last little elf...she has tons of cute pj sets but only wants to sleep in a t-shirt :(

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

How To Cook a Turkey by Madison Aytes

First, I would go to the farm.

Then I will catch it with a net.

After that, I would take him home and put some ketchup on it.

I would put some sauce on it and some salad.

Then I would put him in the oven for six minutes on hot.

Then I'll eat him with a fork.

Side dishes...apples, green beans


She illustrated this with a wonderful picture of herself catching a turkey with a net :)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

How To Cook a Turkey by Caleb Aytes

I get my turkey at groger (he meant Kroger).

My turkey weighs 2 pounds.

You put the turkey in a pan.

My family doesn't stuff the turkey.

I'm not sure if my family puts spices on it (we put salt, pepper and butter).

I think you put in on 40 degrees.

I think you cook it for 50 minutes.

My dad carves it.

And that is how you cook a turkey.

November 2011

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Madison's House

Last week my sister came over and helped my parents rake leaves at our house. It is a never ending battle....I love the trees but the leaves drive me insane in the fall. The entire driveway was leaf free for about 30 minutes...2 days later it is completely covered again as is the deck and patio. We average about 10-15 bags of leaves bagged each week. Madison was home for part of the leaf raking so she was responsible for entertaining Quinn. Madison enjoyed strolling Quinn around the garage and driveway. Madison also enjoyed the beautiful weather and did some beautiful chalk drawings. She drew a picture of her house (with her bed) and a jumpoline (or trampoline as most people call it). We currently don't have a jumpoline but Madison is really wanting one...I am thinking birthday present next year if we can clear a spot in the backyard. Anyway she was very proud of her drawings and I was impressed too :)

Her house and jumpoline

A close-up of her house and the long blue thing is her bed

The jumpoline

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Teacher in the making

Last week I came home from work and my mom told me to be very quite and sneak upstairs and see what Madison was up too.

This is what I found....

Madison was busy teaching her animals/doll. This is the first time she has ever pretended to be a teacher. It was really cute and I was able to snap a picture before she heard me and turned around :)

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Fall Break

This is our 3rd year to go camping with Amy, Aaron and their girls over Fall Break. The kids look so forward to it (and so do the adults). This year Amy's 2 nieces came too...Taylor enjoyed having Kaleigh to visit with and the little ones loved having Kassey to play with! We had outgrown our old tent and recently purchased a new one and the kids were so excited to get to sleep in it. It is a breeze to put up (unlike the other one) and is huge. We can put 3 air mattress's on one side and the other side store our stuff and there is still tons of room to walk around. Caleb wants us to set it up on the deck and let him stay in it...he won't be saying that now that the temp is dropping :) LOL The kids and I went on Thursday night and met Amy, Aaron and the girls (Matt joined us on Friday after work).

We couldn't have asked for better weather...cool evenings and warm days. We enjoyed riding bikes, playing on the playground, hiking a trail, making s'mores, watching movies in the camper and playing card games.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Random Happenings!

Things have been so busy here. We seem to spend more time in our car than at home. Tennis is keeping us busy...matches on Monday and practices on Thursdays and Saturdays. Caleb is still taking tennis as well though he only practices on Thursday and isn't playing on a team yet so no matches for him. Taylor also have Girl Scouts 2 Friday's a month and we just signed Madison up for Girl Scouts though we don't know any details (when they are meeting and where).

Madison is doing good in Kindergarten. She had a list of 15 sight words she had to learn by the end of the month. She also had a homework packet that had a page for every night as well as having to read/have read to her 20 books this month. If she read all 20 books, did all her homework pages and knew all 15 sight words she received a special treat. She worked really hard to learn her words by practicing every night. Her treat was lunch with her teacher.

She has been cracking us up with funny things. A few weeks ago she informed me that George Washington was the best president ever and really missed him! I couldn't help but laugh. On Fridays at her school they can buy ice cream. Friday is our day to go to Menchie's and get a treat after I pick her up. I told her when I picked her up that maybe we shouldn't go since she already had ice cream. She was quick to inform me that Menchie's wasn't ice cream it was yogurt! Pretty good reasoning...and we ended up at Menchie's :)

Tonight Taylor went shopping with Nana so I took Madison and Caleb to see The Zookeeper at the $2 theater. Really glad we didn't waste $50 at the theater this summer. It was ok but definitely not worth spending alot of money on.

Matt is gone this weekend...it is amazing how quickly drill weekends come up! Just a few more months and he will be off to CA.

Taylor has her first youth group function Saturday night. They are going to a Corn Maze. She is really excited and the weather is going to be perfect....no rain and cool temps! I am so excited for her!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Fall Get-away with The Tomlinson's

Last weekend we were able to get away from the business of our lives and relax at The Wilderness with our best friends. Matt wasn't feeling great (his hip/back has bothering him). He enjoyed some of our weekend but just stayed in the room most of Sunday. Matt's parents also went with us which was great....we played cards until late at night. Also Matt's parents watched all 5 kids Saturday night and allowed us to go enjoy all you can eat shrimp at Red Lobster. This is an annual thing for us. Can't wait to go again before it ends in November.

This was the last weekend for the outdoor area to be open. We enjoyed spending lots of time in the Lazy River. The weather was predicted to be cool but ended up perfect! The evenings were cool which made the hot tub wonderful. Both Clara and Caleb had grown enough to get to ride some new stuff since we went last. Caleb was able to ride Stoem Chaser and Clara was able to ride the tube slides and Runaway Canyon. They both loved it!

Heading down to the waterpark

The fabulous Lazy River

The kids hiding behind one of the waterfalls

The kids had a blast on the waterslides!

Clara and Aaron letting the bucket of water dump on them

The kids loved playing here too!

Clara riding Runaway Canyon for the 1st time!

Clara and Aaron riding the tube slides

Love these sweet kids!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Madison Goes To Kindergarten!

Well my baby girl has finally started Kindergarten. I knew this time was coming and thought I would handle it well especially with Madison being the 3rd child. I didn't do well....I cried before I even got her dropped off at her room on her 1st day :( Madison on the other hand was super excited! She was very disappointed that she only got to go 2 days for the 1st two weeks. She didn't think it was fair that Taylor and Caleb got to go while she had to stay home. She was thrilled when August 29th rolled around and she was going to be going everyday. She likes her teacher though was disappointed that she didn't get Ms Schaefer (Taylor's kindergarten teacher). We are extremely happy with Ms Joiner though! Madison is adjusting well....she is so tired in the evenings and that has made for some early bedtimes lately but overall is doing well. Last week she did inform me that "she wanted to go back to preschool b/c all she did was sit at her desk and work in Kindergarten and that it was no fun! The 1st full week of school I walked her to her room every day. Week 2 meant dropping the kids off in the drop-line and Caleb would be walking her to her room. She wasn't real thrilled with that idea but I thought it would be best to go ahead and start that or Madison would have me walking her to her class the rest of the school year :) Caleb was excited to be the big brother and be responsible for walking Madison to her class. Madison on her 1st full day of Kindergarten

Big Brother proud to be watching out for his little sister