Thursday, October 28, 2010


doing some shopping today at csnstores. looking at kitchen bar stools, some fun cookware, new shoes, and a variety of educational goodies for homeschooling.

and who knows, maybe even a few christmas presents for some of you out there...

but in way more exciting news, guess where anthony is?

jury duty.

he's been sitting in one room since 8:30 this morning doing nothing.

do you know how jealous i am of him? do you know how much reading i could get done?

but on the bright side, guess who else is sitting in jury duty with him.

hercules.also known as kevin sorbo.

kinda doubt he's dressed like this.

you never know though.

i asked anthony to take a picture of him.

he didn't.

i think he thought i was joking.

i wasn't.

because seeing celebrities at jury duty tells me one thing. don't ignore the jury summons when you live in southern california. you never know who you might see.

(what? like i don't know how shallow i am for thinking its a little exciting to see famous people, even if they played weird characters on random tv shows opposite a freakishly strong woman named "xena"?)

Monday, October 25, 2010

daddy parties

so this past weekend, i went on a women's retreat with my church.

i knew not a soul there.

unless you count the awesome wife of a guy anthony prays with at his men's bible study who invited me via text and called the church to get me in her room and made me feel all warm and welcome all weekend.

never underestimate the power of going out of your way to be someone's friend.

take it from that someone.

because, seriously, who wants to go get trapped in the mountains all weekend with a bunch of women they don't know?

she was great. she was my friend before she even knew whether or not i was some wackadoo she'd be stuck with for 3 days.

so, it was going out of my comfort zone to go. but i'm totally glad i went. met great ladies. learned more about my great God. hiked in God's great creation. ate great food i didn't have to cook on dishes i didn't have to wash.

and then there is my fantastic husband, who encouraged me to be gone for TWO WEEKENDS IN A ROW.

that's right, he's a good man.

i know its a lot for him to do single parent duty on his own and i appreciate it.

and so do the kids.

the fun doesn't stop.

there's the beach...
park trips. times a million.
sleeping arrangements...

and other special things like shopping trips where ella got new shoes and a cute little purse and other old navy clearance bargains.

seriously, daddy parties are like their favorite thing in the whole world. i'm pretty sure before picking me up he had to tell the kids, "now make sure you tell mommy how much you really missed her."

and then they probably got all confused and glanced around the minivan and finally noticed, oh, mom's not here? no wonder we've been having so much fun.

anthony puts parents everywhere to shame.

Monday, October 18, 2010

all aboard

bennett and i had a special getaway.(ella got to go last time. it was his turn for the airplane ride.)

(and NO this does not mean it's mason's turn next time... not unless "next time" is in about 5 years and involves sedatives.)

bennett's first ever train ride and plane ride were just about as thrilling and spectacular as possible and met all his fantastic little 4 year old expectations.especially soda on the airplane.

soda. does it get any better than this?

what? peanuts too?!?

life is good when you are was fun to be back in arizona to see my wonderful family and dear friends. (did i remember to take pictures of these special people? of course not.)

except for the complete absence of any moisture whatsoever. i'm barely off the plane and i begin frantically searching for chap stick. and lotion.

how did i ever survive in such dryness?

so we journeyed up for a beautiful hike in oak creek canyon.which involved all sorts of water and rocks and dams and sticks.oh, and God's completely amazing creation.seriously breathtaking.i have to say it is one of the most beautiful places in all the world.

and i've seen a lot some of the world.

like say for instance, india.

i spent a big chunk of time there back in the days between college and marriage.

it was the most eye-opening, challenging, enriching, amazing, educational experience in my life. i learned more about Christ's love and the desperation and need of us as his children than ever before.

i spent my time with the poorest of the poor, street children in calcutta. they lied to me, yelled at me, stole from me, manipulated me...

and i absolutely love them to pieces.

its a long story, like another couple hundred blog entries, but now, there is a home in calcutta, meeting the needs of orphans and desperate children. hope home. the testimonies of the children who have experienced God there and been transformed are simply amazing.

so dev, the man in the trenches in india came to visit this fine country of ours. it was a great chance to catch up on the goings on at hope home. and also an opportunity to let you know that if you have considered sponsoring a child, this is a great way to do it. because basically, i can vouch for them first hand.

and also, there is always a need for short (or long) term missions trips to the home. oh, and they are, among other things, in need of a nurse. (are you reading this cara?)

seriously, pray about it.

(whoa... is that like 3 pictures of me in a single blog post? that has for sure got to be some kind of record...)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


mason was born.

760 days later, we left him in the nursery and he STAYED THERE!!! and there was rejoicing in heaven.

no hysterics.

no violent protests.

no non-calming and eventual vomiting on poor, unsuspecting servants of the Lord.

no number appearing on the screen saying, "please get your kid before the nursery workers completely lose it..."

after moving, church hunting, numerous manipulative tactics that never worked...

after the "just leave him, he'll be fine" followed by the pager going off, the number on the screen, the vomit...
after volunteering ourselves and staying with him the entire service...

after fervent pleading with the almighty God...

finally, we left him there and came back after church and he was smiling!


i thought this day would never come.

great is your reward in heaven, robert and kelly, the best nursery workers on the face of this beautiful earth.

Friday, October 8, 2010

check it out

is this not the cutest thing ever?
i imagine if i had one, it would make my kitchen feel cleaner instantly.

and guess what? my friend beth, the creative one who perfected those amazing aprons for ella's party, is giving one away.

so go on over and enter her giveaway.

and while you are there, check out some of the other great stuff she makes.

i so want one of these necklaces.
except not with lucas and patrick on it, of course. that would be weird. i didn't give birth to them.

why am i telling you this?

i'm not, really. i'm telling my husband. because he reads my blog too and he might be wondering what he should be getting me for Christmas.

also, beth makes these awesome hope ribbons. created in honor of her mom.

they are pretty fantastic. and, they are on sale for the month of october.

so go on over to beth's website and pick something out. because guess what? she's offering a 20% discount to you.

20% off

for. you.

so go start your Christmas shopping.

or just buy something for me.

but at the very least, enter her giveaway.

go check her out. and tell her i sent you.

(20% off coupon code is steph2)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

party time

although my life of sleep deprivation did not officially begin until exactly 6 years ago on friday, we had an early birthday celebration for ella today.

it was super fun.ella's closest friends...
lots of cooking (and by cooking i mean playing with food)...

laughter and screeching...

and enough sugar to put a diabetic straight into a coma.

tempting, eh?

a cooking party is perfect for kids at this age.

especially if you are insane.

ok, but actually, it was really fun. and ella felt special, which is really all that matters.

and when i had the bright idea to make chef hats for the kids to decorate and wear, i made the mistake of sizing them all to ella's head.
i forgot about how ella's head circumference was off the charts (literally) in all the percentiles at every doctor's visit.

every. one.

he even had us come back for extra well checks, just to be sure.

big heads run in my family. just ask my brother.

or my dad, whose football helmets had to be special ordered in high school.

it has to do with all that brilliance. big brains, i tell ya.

anyhow, i did feel bad when the girls would say, "i can't see! i can't see!" when their hat dipped down below their eyes.

i know what you are thinking, at least those completely AWESOME aprons they got to take home made up for it.
my friend beth personalized and perfected them for me. she's pretty amazing.

more on her very soon.

but right now, since the kids are in bed, the house is quiet and the tornado has subsided, i'm going to go eat some chocolate and check out to shallow tv viewing.

happy birthday, ella.

Monday, October 4, 2010

the mop is gone



(restraining, convulsions, screaming and pretty much pure torture)

he has eyes! and a forehead!

i have to do a double take. i almost don't even recognize him anymore.

then he starts screaming or whining for something and it all comes back to me.

Friday, October 1, 2010

dear winner,

ella drew you out of her cute little pink bucket...

and you are

so go on over and congratulate her. she's super fun and sassy with 4 beautiful girls and sometimes i even feed her husband lunch because he and anthony work together and they are practically bff's. (he's gonna totally love that i call them that)

i know what you are thinking... did i rig this, since i know her. but hey, i didn't because i knew almost everyone who entered and i'd be super excited if any one of you won. so maybe next time, k?

congratulations chris. and happy shopping.