Wednesday, May 25, 2011

CG Service Day

At our church, C3, we are part of a Community Group, or CG. As part of our groups, we take on service projects and missions to help out in our surrounding community. For instance, our group has "adopted" the local fire station, and once a month we take them dinner. This month, the leaders of our group decided that for our service project we were going to work in my parents' yard. Mom and Dad have spent a great deal of time working on their yard in the past few years, and before Dad originally got sick it looked pretty amazing. They had quite a variety of plants, lime trees, a grapevine, and he also grew things like okra, tomatoes, and various peppers. But because of his illness, he is not allowed to "play in the dirt." So, over the past almost 2 years, the beauty of the yard has slowly declined. The fish pond had been emptied of all fish during the Great Raccoon War of 2009, and then was irreparebly damaged during the harsh winter, and was probably done in by Lola trying to swim in it.

So early Saturday morning everyone came over and worked for about an hour and a half, and made a HUGE difference!!!

These flower beds had poison ivy in them somehow...personally I think the raccoon put it there on purpose....don't know how else it gets into a random yard in the middle of the street.

They replaced the pond liner and fixed the pump

Planted new flowers around the pond and back porch

This is Mindy and her daughter Ariel. Mindy has OCD(like, for real) and had a REALLY hard time planting the flowers in random order as opposed to in lines by color!

Carter napped most of the time, but woke up and had to be in the middle of it all. Yes my child is running around outdoors in his jammies at 10AM, and yes those are shark Crocs he is also wearing. And yes he moves so constantly that almost every picture I take these days is blurry like this one.

Grand Dude did some entertaining with bubbles on the front porch

And our CG. We love them! Not only do Christiaan and I feel so blessed to be a part of this group, but they are such servants that they took on this project, even though many of them don't know my parents, and my mom and dad are not members of C3! Its so refreshing to worship in a church that does not act like they are a retail store in competition with every other church. Not that we have had issues with that in the past. :)

Finished products! The pond... and there are fish in there again!

They planted the hydrangea plant that I bought Mom for Mother's Day. Its already flourishing!

Trimmed the bushes and cleaned out the beds

All the randomly planted flowers in the now poison ivy-free bed!

And I cleaned out the beds on the sides of the house and discovered these gorgeous lilies were blooming

Thanks so much for brightning my parents' eyes! Seriously like 3 weeks of work was done in about an hour and a half! I hope that now Dad will be able to enjoy it outside before he heads back in for transplant!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

In which we build a tent

And by "we" I mean my brothers and Christiaan, under the supervision of my dad.

A few years ago my parents put up a temporary/permanent canopy that covered the back patio, thus giving a nice shady area, and also helping reduce the heat level in the den and kitchen during the summer. That one bit the dust during an extreme wind storm, and the replacement lasted a couple of years until our crazy snow/ice earlier this year. We decided to give my dad an early Father's day present so he can sit on the patio while he is home.

Carter helped too

He thought it was a tunnel!

It took 6 of us to move it!

Ta daa!! This weekend our CG at church is coming over to help with the flower beds and to redo the fish pond that was also destroyed by the harsh weather. I can't wait to see what it looks like all finished!

Some things Carter has been up to

We have a full fledge monkey on our hands. I'm not sure the term "active" accurately describes him. He is completely fearless, and seems to have a great desire to achieve the highest peak in the room. Thus, the dishwasher makes a great booster to reach things on the cabinet.

Hehe. Just kidding Mom.

On Mother's Day we gathered with my mom's family to celebrate and also to celebrate April birthdays. A little late.

"CarterRoy" shared Grandpa's ice water from his mug

And put on a show for everyone

Grandma and 3 of her 4. I'm guessing Drew was a little overwhelmed by the estrogen and attempted to fit in?? You can't really explain Drew....he's just Drew.

Much better

Mommy and baby

He has actually started giving kisses! Well, kiss-like open mouthed head leans.

The 3 birthday girls, Chloe, Devin, and Miranda. Not sure what was going on here, or where Chandler was during the birthday cake.

GranPam and bubbies

It was blazingly hot and nasty humid by the time we got home on Monday, so we put a little water in the pool and tossed in the kid. I can't wait to do this every day!

14 days til school is out! Can I get a he#! yes?? We went on our field trip Thursday to the aquarium and butterfly house, and successfully returned with all the children, no one fell in the lagoon or got kicked out of either place, and the rain held off. And I don't think I pissed off too many parents with us. :) Too bad I can't post pics of my kiddos! I have somehow gotten roped into helping lead up field day plans at school for the last day. Um, I hated field day in elementary because A)it involved team games and I hate losing and playing with teams, B) there wasn't any sort of prize for winning, and C) it was freaking hot and none of the games involved a swimming pool. But I think it will be fun, and as long as we don't have to wear pants that day, I'll survive!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Some phone pics

Dad walking up the sidewalk on the day he got to come home! Going on week 3 now, and he's getting his strength built up and getting his fill of Carter time.

Aunt Karen does art time with Cole, and Carter has recently decided that he is old enough to join the fun. Kinda how he promoted himself to the older class at church. This was his first masterpiece.

Ah, sweet glass of heaven! Christiaan and I got to go on our first date since December, and we ate at Gloria's before seeing a movie.

We stayed at my aunt Shannon's house last weekend when she went out of town and I forgot his seat. So we made do with a lap tray. It was all fine and good until I turned my head and he climbed on top of the tray!

The strap on the shopping Cary does no good anymore, so I have to put him in the buggy part. He thinks it's a free ride at the circus!

When we stayed at Shannon's, Nathan was sick and he sent me this text after I put him in bed. When he was little, he called me "my aushra" and Chloe had called me "aura" and we had been joking about that earlier, thus the weird lingo!

Carter was quite displeased at having to wear a hospital gown when he got his tubes!

But daddy was there, so it was ok!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Easter Weekend

Just another example of Carter's climbing skillz....

What Mom?? I could see my cartoons better when i stood up....

Last weekend Carter and I were invited to a Stingerette reunion at the home of one of my fellow class of 2000 drill team girls. Our director, Mrs. Holliman, sells the Stella and Dot jewelry, so they thought it was a great excuse for all of us to get together! There were 3 other little ones there, and 2 of the girls are currently preggo. Shelby, Emily and I were emailing earlier in the week about being apprehensive about bringing our toddlers to a house that is not used to little ones, but they were invited so we obliged! I spent the better part of 2 hours chasing after Carter, taking nice breakables out of his gooey hands, pulling him off of furniture and the fireplace, keeping him and Molly out of the toilet paper, and attempting to properly replace all of the TV/stereo equipment in the house. We may or may not be invited back.

We tried to get their picture together. Again with the herding cats thing. And the beautiful white couch?? Miranda, you are a brave woman! Aven and Molly are deep in converstaion, and Carter could clearly care less.

Aven was quite taken with Molly! But who wouldn't be, pretty little thing!

Then the boys decided to have a wrestling match, and Molly kept far away(remote in hand...)

Then we got brave and added Dylan to the mix. Although, if size is any indication, he can easily defend himself! He made my little dude look tiny, and although there is a 9 month difference, can you really tell? Tough guy!

Aven made another new friend in Dylan. He was in a loving mood that day apparently, as he was giving out the smooches!

I loved getting to see these girls and Mrs. Holliman, and having our little ones play together, and getting myself a Mother's Day gift(from Christiaan, of course!). I hope we can get together again after all the other additions arrive!

The next day was Easter Sunday. Christiaan had to work, so he couldn't attend church with us, but my family joined us at C3, and then we had lunch and went to Karen and Drew's.

Carter took part in the Easter egg hunt at church. They didn't take the little guys outside since most of them cannot walk. Carter put an entire egg in his mouth. Not the contents, the whole dang egg. I had attended the 9:00 service since it was my Sunday to work the 10:45 service nursery duty, and when I walked into the babies room, Carter promptly escaped and went straight to the bigger kids room. So, he joined in on their egg hunt outside.

Although this time around, he was more interested in playing on the slide, surprise, surprise!

We attempted a picture in front of the church

We were able to get an awesome family picture though!

And then our luck ran out after that before could get a good one of the 3 of us.

When we got home, he begged to play outside, so I thought maybe we would try the whole egg hunt thing again so I could get some cute pictures.

He picked up the one egg, threw it across the yard, and then refused to sit with his basket for a photo op. There ya go.

(By the way, if you gave Carter this basket last year at Easter, would you please tell me?? At that point last year Carter was 3 weeks old and my brain was not thinking straight yet)

One of his favorite things to do these days is to play with Libby. Generally there is more taunting of her than anything, although occasionally he will actually throw the ball, at which point he cracks up when she chases it!

The taunting phase

Last week was TAKS testing at school, on top of other obligations, and this weekend is the last weekend that Christiaan will not be working the afternoon/evening shift for awhile. This morning Carter had surgery to put tubes in his ears, and it went well! I meant to take pictures of the process, but it was early and he was a handful. Hopefully it will end all our many doctor visits that we have had the last 5 months!