Saturday, February 28, 2009

you all know a champ

Just a quick one to inform everyone that Courtney is first in the whole state of Virginia in the Short Stirrup division in the VHSA points. We could not be more proud of the hard work she and Moose have put into riding in the last few months. We do have to keep in mind that it is still early in the year, but if they keep up their hard work all season long, they just might be able to stay on top until Finals in November.

Well, we are off to a show now at Fox Chase where hopefully we will have another good outing.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

"That's mine"

I came home last night from a lesson at the barn with Bug, and I brought home some Mc Donald's. I was greeted at the door by Jilly with " Hi Mommy...OOOHHHH french fries!! Yeah!!" So we make it out to the living room (yes it was a very lazy dinner night) and I sit on the floor and start to dole out dinner. Just then, Jilly says to me "Mommy, come here." And she comes over to me and says "Let me see." She puts her hands on the sides of my face, and has me put my head down...I was wearing one of her barrettes (it was the first thing I could find on my way out the door to the barn). She gets this kinda mad, kinda stern look on her face and tells me "Mommy, that's my rainbow clippy. I have it back now please?" It was more about the way she delivered me the if I didn't know I had her clippy...and girl was so serious too. She was son interested in the clippy that it took me a few minutes of coaxing to get her to eat her fires. She did end up winning, mostly because she was relentless with the "I have it back now please Mommy" than anything else. I tend to cave in to her when she uses her manners.

Monday, February 23, 2009

let's make a deal

For those of you who don't know how Jeff's job works, let me fill you in. He has a quota of contacts that he is supposed to make every day. That means interviews, and getting those interviews typed up. His month end is the 21st of each month, and when that falls on a weekend (like this month) he has until Monday night to get everything typed and turned in. Due to our crazy everyday lives, it is sometimes necessary for Jeff to wait until the end of the month and cram all his typing into the last few days. Such was the case this month, he might as well have been out of town for the little amount of time we've been able to see him this weekend. It makes me appreciate single motherhood (and not miss it one bit!), but it gets difficult.

I am by no stretch of the imagination any good with math, and I had to help Bug with her homework while keeping Cooper entertained, and make sure Jilly wasn't too distracting in the homework process. Did I mention I was cooking dinner at the time too. (These are the nights that almost drive me to drink!) So we get the homework done, Cooper fed, Jilly sitting at the table, dinner ready, and I think I'm in the home stretch for the night. HA!

Jilly decided of the hamburger helper that she was to eat, she only wanted the noodles out it, which doesn't fly around here. So we play "let's make a deal" which usually works with her. Most times it ends up being something along the lines of "You eat 3 more bites and you can be" When I asked her that tonight, she looked at me, tilted her head (think of the RCA dog) and said "Mmmm, I don't sink so Mommy." After the crazy few days I've had, I just busted out did Courtney, and then that was all Jilly would say all night long.

Sometimes, when you think you've got it bad, one of the kids will do or say something that reminds you that it's all worth it in the end. Just smile, try to laugh, and remember it will get easier.

"Let me show you..."

Who would have guessed that Jilly has turned into our little exhibitionist? Well, I'm not so sure it's was about showing off herself as it was about showing she was a big girl. Well, the first time it started was on Saturday when Riley-man stopped by for a visit. She ran to the door, got all excited, and pulled down her pants to show off her Jasmine "big girl" panties. This of course got a ton of laughs by everybody (maybe not the right thing to do, but we couldn't help ourselves). We had to have a little talk about keeping our clothes on after that, and I thought everything was going to be fine.

Until today, when Gran-ma stopped by for a few minutes. Jilly was on the potty at the time, but when she came out to the living room, Jilly again pulled her pants down to show off her "big girl" panties.

Now I'm really scared to take her out in public in these panties. Goodness knows, little miss Jilly will talk the ear off of anybody who will listen, and lately it has been all about potty. I can see it now, we're going to be in line at Target, she's going to be talking to the cashier (just like she always does) and I'm going to look over at her, and BAMM...she'll be showing off her panties to all of Target!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

big girl

With this "wonderful" winter weather we've been having, I decided to put our indoor time to good use. We pulled out the big girl "real" panties, and I have to say, Jilly has only had one accident in 2 days. We are so proud of her, but I am almost scared to leave the house...but we'll have to cross our fingers and hope for the best.

making jerky

A few weeks ago, my Dad saw an infomercial for a food dehydrator and thought of Courtney. The girl is always buying jerky of some kind when she goes to the store with him, or on road trips. Turns out, it was the best $40 he ever spent. Courtney spent the weekend over there making all kinds of jerky and dried fruits, and it was all good. I can't wait for her to get to go back and make more, cause I don't think this batch is going to last's really good!

Friday, February 20, 2009

"I didn't..."

Jilly was playing with Cooper on the floor earlier tonight, and I told her "Be careful of Baby Cooper, she doesn't feel good." Jilly turned around and professed "I not break her, Mommy." I love the way Jilly is so matter-of-fact when she says some of the cutest things I have ever heard.

She just informed us "I play balloons, then go a bed." Now keep in mind, it is quarter after 8, and nobody, and I mean NOBODY has said anything about going to bed yet.

There have been many times in the past year that we would swear that Jilly is reading our minds. Nobody has to say anything out loud, but she will bust out and say what ever it is that you were just thinking about. It is very scary, mostly because I am a big believer in having a "sixth sense" as it were.

I may have more to write later, I'm being kicked off the computer. Courtney's deal is she has to read for an hour in order to get an hour on the computer...she's ready now.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

enough already

Every time the weather hits 70 degrees Courtney gets a cold. Last month when she got sick we were able to keep Cooper from getting it...not so lucky this time. Poor little thing sneezes and snot goes half way down her chest. And when there is this much snot, there is spit-up. Cooper has been a blessing in the spit-up department, I think she may have gotten sick a total of 4 times in her almost 7 months. In the past 3 days, I have worn more spit-up then I ever did with Jilly and Courtney combined (and Bug was a spitter). I think that this is the hardest few days of motherhood I have ever had to deal with. I think we have taken a turn for the better, Cooper has been smiling and laughing more today then in the past 3 days. Here's to getting better.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Mystery solved!

We were watching Diego (for like the 6th time today) and I guess I was actually paying attention this time. When Rescue Pack is singing, he says "I can turn into a para sail or a kayak...." So now I know where Jilly heard para sail from...still not sure how it relates to asparagus. That's a mystery for another day.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


I think Jilly might be watching a little too much TV on these cold winter days. On Sunday we went to a family lunch at a Chinese buffet, and Jilly was busting out with "Ni-hao" from one of the Nick Jr shows about a Chinese-American girl who teaches you Chinese phrases, and great lessons about listening, sharing...absolutely wonderful show. So Jilly was walking around as we were leaving talking to one of the waitresses telling her "Ni-hao, and she-she" which mean hello, and thank you. I love the fact that she remembers her manners even in a different language!

On the same note, she was getting ready for bed last night, had given everybody night-night kisses, grabbed her baby doll, and went running for the stairs. She yelled at me "Hurry Mommy, rapido. I tired." At least she is picking something up from Dora, Diego, and the rest of the Nick Jr line-up.

Sunday, February 15, 2009


Jilly has gotten really good at stall tactics when it comes to bedtime. Recently, she has been getting out of bed and playing. Well, to combat this, when she jumps out of bed one of us goes up, tucks her back in, and gives her a warning "If I have to come back up here, your baby doll is coming downstairs with me.". So far, it has worked. Then there was tonight. She must have heard me hitting the top of the stairs, and she went jumping back into bed. This made me laugh even before I went in, but what made it worse was the fact that Jilly was in the middle of pulling the covers over her head, in an attempt to fool me into thinking she was sleeping. So now I'm in stitches, and trying to tell her it's time for bed, and I want her to take me seriously, but there's no chance of that cause I'm laughing way too hard. So I finally get myself under control, and tell Jilly "It's not play time, it's sleepy time. Close your eyes, and go to sleep." To which she replies "I don't know how to close my eyes, Mommy. Show me." Had this been any other night, I would have just told her that she knows how, now go sleep...but since I was already giddy and giggly, it got drawn out into a 5 minute laughing jag by both of us. Needless to say, she has been asleep for a few hours now, not another peep after "learning" how to close her eyes again!

Party time

We get to the house and sneak the cake in while Pop-pop is still out shopping for mushrooms for the homemade cream of mushroom soup. Everybody is hanging out having a good time (poor Russell and Amber were running late due to the flat tire that needed to be changed mid-trip). The 2 two-year-olds were in the play room for a total of 5 minutes, and Jilly comes out, looks around finds me and proceeds to rat on Riley. "Mommy, Riley-man draw his self." Since I was already up, I went to the playroom, and sure enough, Riley had taken some markers and drawn on both sides of his face...we like to think of it as "war paint". I'm still trying to figure out why Jilly made a special trip to find me, instead of going to Russell, Amber, or any of the other adults who were closer.

The two of them played and played, they even rode the pony together before dinner.

We ate a wonderful dinner of french onion and cream of mushroom soup, some great roast beef with brown potatoes and carrots. I think Jilly is getting ready to grow again, from the time we got to Gram-ma's house until we left the girl didn't stop eating. With the amount of junk she had before dinner I was sure she wasn't going to eat very much, but she finished everything I put on her plate and kept going back for more carrots. After a little bit of down time, it was time for cake, presents, and cards.

Pop-pop got an alpaca sweater like the ones the kids got, a huge coffee mug with the girls names and "We love you this much.", and I made a small "brag book" of the cake making process so he could show everyone what his girls did for him for his special day. Hopefully, it was a birthday that will be remembered for many years to come.

Final product

Before we could put the little magnetic golfer (which Courtney wants to name Steve for some reason...) on the cake, Jilly had to test him out. She had a blast hitting the little golf ball all over the kitchen, into the sand and water traps, and it even sticks to the trees!

It was also very refreshing that my Mom took into account that I don't like chocolate, and decided to make a few cupcakes out of regular cake mix and incorporate it into the design. We put the 2 cupcakes on top of each other and made a hill for "Steve". For a Friday the 13th, I have to say it was pretty cool, getting to hang with my girls, my Mom, and make a cake for my Daddy's birthday.

cake challange

Bad things come from watching too much Food Network. My Mom has turned us onto a show on the Food Network that is all about challenges where 4 people compete and make crazy things. Like a 1200 pound cake that was a replica of a statue of a lion (I'm sure it has a name, but I wasn't paying too much attention), and a version of David's The Thinker made out of chocolate. Well, my Mom decided that for my Dad's birthday, his cake had to have a golf theme since he enjoys golf so much. For 2 weeks we have know that we were making a golf themed cake, and not quite sure how to execute it. As of Friday morning the plan was to create a golf course on the top of the cake by painting on top of fondant. My mission was to try to locate a golf cart...which was much harder than it sounded! While out and about on a golf cart hunt, I stumbled onto a little desktop magnetic golf set. Well, that changed the whole design of the cake, but in a good way.

So with our plan in place, we began making the cake. The first step was to mix up the brownie mix that was to make the golf course. Jilly made an excellent first. I think she ate as much of the mix as we poured to bake!

Then we waited for Buggy to get home while things cooled off, and the next step was icing. After putting the cake together, we had to add the fondant so we had a foundation for our golf course. Then we had to paint it so it looked real. After a total of about 4 hours in the kitchen we had a finished product that we were all very pleased with.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


For Christmas my Mom made both Jilly and Cooper piggy banks to match the one she had made for Courtney a few years ago. Whenever Jilly finds change she's announces "I have monies for my piggy boink." I'm not sure why I love the way kids talk so much, but it just makes me smile.

Like while eating dinner tonight, Jilly looked at her plate and said "Yummy chicken, and rice, and bean-beans (that's how green beans comes out)". Then upon closer inspection she said "No, not bean-beans...what's this?" I told her it was asparagus, to which she replied "Ooohhh...I like para sails." I'm not even sure she has ever even heard the word para sail, but it was too charming how to her "para sails" means asparagus. Courtney was laughing so hard, she was almost in tears!

You Are My Sunshine...

My thoughts and prayers are with my very dear friend (let's not kid ourselves...she's more like a sister to me) Sunny. This past Sunday, she had a "small" accident with a rather large kitchen knife. After blood being spurt everywhere and getting to the hospital, she was sent home and told to see a surgeon, which she did yesterday. He told her she had to have surgery, which started about an hour ago. She had to have her palm split open so they could repair the tendon and nerve that she sliced on Sunday. We had a "scrapbook date" set for Sunday, we have a new toy that we want to try, but that will have to wait until she has feeling in both her hands.

Anyway, I love you Sunny, get better soon.

"basketball should be illegal!"

Nobody likes to see the caller-ID and see your kid's school come up at 1:30 in the afternoon (especially when you just got BOTH of the littler ones to sleep!). Needless to say, I thought I was getting a call that Courtney was sick and I would have to wake the other two up and go get her. It was indeed the school nurse, but she was calling to inform me that during PE Courtney was involved in an accident. My heart sank, and of course that "worse case scenario" thing starts going off in your head, but the nurse told me Bug had just bonked heads with another student. They had her put ice on her head for about a half hour and asked her how she was feeling. She said she wanted to go back to class (quite surprising...seeing as how she was then on her way to a poetry quiz!) but she wanted someone to call me so I was aware of the situation.

When Courtney walked through the door, the first thing out of her mouth was "They should make basketball illegal!" I told her she might be over-reacting just a little, to which she replied with "But Connor just broke his foot last week playing basketball in PE, it is way too dangerous! I mean, why do I have to play a bunch of sports I don't even like anyway?!?" The kid was on the warpath!

I told her that if it weren't for PE, a lot of kids would never know that they liked or were good at a certain sport...she rolled her eyes, and was done.

So the school nurse sent home a sheet stating what to be on the look-out for when it comes to a concussion or other head injury. It said to make sure to wake her up about midnight or so, just to see if she was easy to wake up indicating no head injury. Usually, that girl is spring loaded when you open her bedroom door, but recently she has been harder to wake up (I think it has something to do with the bigger bed, more room..who knows). Jeff and I debated for a few minutes as to whether or not to wake her up. So finally, I decide that I'm going to check on her, and I creep up to her door, and ever so slowly open the door...and wouldn't you know it, this was one of those "spring loaded" kinda nights. Almost through tears she asked me "Who's there, what's....who are you?" I told her I was just checking on her, that she was fine, I was sorry, and she should go back to sleep. Jeff and I were laughing so hard we were afraid we were going to wake up all the girls.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

bragging rights

Since the start of the fourth grade Courtney has been receiving "real letter" grades, not the 1's 2's and 3's she got from kindergarten through third grade. With this current report card, there have been 10 grading periods, and she has been on the honor roll all 10 times. She has worked very hard, and Jeff and I could not be more proud of her. As we have explained to's not the final grade that counts, it's the effort she puts into it. As long as she tries her best, we will always be pleased with the outcome, and help her however we can along the way. It was wonderful to see the look of accomplishment on her face when she came through the door and announced "I did it again, Mommy!" Those are words I will treasure.

Monday, February 9, 2009

got an owwie?

This morning started off like any normal morning, Courtney got off to school on time, Cooper was up and fed and changed. Jeff was in the shower, and Jilly had just come downstairs and was on the potty. And then the universe decided it was time to laugh at us...again. While I was helping Jilly finish going potty, all the sudden I heard this rush of water. A pipe in the dining room had burst. So I tear off running upstairs, and yelled to Jeff to come downstairs quickly. As we are assessing the leak, Jilly came out of the bathroom and saw the leak and pronounced "Mommy's diming room got an owwie, you fix it Daddy?" It was so precious, it made us laugh when we thought there was nothing to laugh at.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Excuse me!

OK, so you all wanted to know my secret behind Cooper's phenomenal weight it is, Cherry Coke. Just kidding, jeez people! While Jeff was trying to drink his soda at the show, Cooper decided she wanted to wash down the collar she had been chewing on earlier with a little of Jeff's soda. She is too funny when she sees anyone eating, all she wants to do is eat real food like everybody else. Dr. Moore was explicit about no table until she has teeth, so she's just out of luck for now. I don't think it's going to stop her from trying.

Too bright

While killing some time in between divisions, we were sitting and having some snacks. Jilly and Gran-ma were sitting on the tailgate of "Truck-truck" as Jilly has named Little Pop-pop's truck. Jilly saw Gran-ma shielding her eyes from the sun, and decided it was too bright for her as well and copied Gran-ma and put her little hand up over her eyes. Sometimes we call Jilly a little monkey, but I think she's more a copy cat than she is a monkey!

results of the horse show

We had a great day at the horse show. She won Reserve Champ in Pony Pleasure, Champion in Short Stirrup, and came in second in an Equation class. Both pony and rider were very happy, had a great day and hopefully this is a wonderful start to our last year in Short Stirrup.


The morning of a show, and I swear that Courtney never, and I do mean NEVER moves this fast on any given morning at 6:30am! She's been doing this for 4 years now, and I think she still gets the butterflies the same as before her first show ever. It is so cute, hopefully it won't get in her way, but at least she is in a great mood when she's like this. I don't know if she can say anything funnier...kid cracks me up with some of the stuff that comes out of her mouth. We'll just have to wait and see what the day brings.

Friday, February 6, 2009

I need to be naked!

As we are trying to get our pj's on for the night, Jilly has decided that she doesn't want to put her shirt on. For some reason, Jilly decides she wants to look at herself in the back door...while taking her shirt on and off... And then we hear the word no parent of a daughter wants to hear..."I need to be naked!" So I asked her why, and she responded with, "cause it's fun". Hopefully this is not foreshadowing of her future, and she will be as modest as a nun!

"Fishing pole"

Ever since we went to cousin Blake's pool party for his birthday in January, Jilly has been talking about the "swimmin pole". We can't get her to say pool, it comes out pole. So while at Target today we bought a new bathing suit (yes because we all think about summer gear on the 5th of February, right?!?) and as soon as we put it in the basket all Jilly could say was "swimmin suit". When asked later about her "bathing suit" she replied with "You don't say that to me! It's my swimmin siut for the fishin pole!" Still not sure where the confusion about swimming vs. fishing came from, but the expressions on her face, and the inflection with which Jilly speaks these days is amazing! There are times when I can't figure out who, but I know the girl is channeling someone.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

A circle is a circle...

I have had an epiphany. No matter how hard you try, want, need, or wish something to change, you can not force a circle to be anything but a circle. You may prefer a square, or sometimes a situation might call for a triangle, but alas there are few things in this world that are so certain. But this is one of them. A circle is a circle, and that will never change. You can not fit a circle into a square hole.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

what the...?!?!

So out of her God given right to spoil the grand kids, Grand-ma stopped by this afternoon with prizies in hand. At work, there was someone selling handmade sweaters made from alpaca wool. Of course, Grand-ma could not pass up the chance for a one of a kind special gift for the kids. When she got here (as most of you know, as soon as anyone even pulls up in front of my house my dogs go ballistic and start barking like mad) the kids ran to the door to see who was here. They started jumping up and down screaming "Gran-ma here, Gran-ma here!!" when she walked through the door. You should have seen the looks on their faces when she said " I have some special presents for you guys."

We make it to the living room in one piece, and are all oozing with anticipation waiting to see what Gran-ma brought us. She pulls these sweaters out of the bag, and both kids look at her and say " No, that's not prizies. Where's prizies?" Needless to say, the intricacy was lost on the kids. I'm not sure who was more disappointed, the kids because they were expecting toys of some kind, or Grand-ma because the kids were less than enthusiastic about it all. All in all, the kids did end up liking the sweaters, so much so they didn't want to take them off. By the end of the afternoon everyone was happy.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

"You are NOT taking MY tv away!"

Since Grandma Alice has pneumonia, Riley came over to play with us again today. He ate his "chippy waffle" as Jilly calls the chocolate chip Eggo waffles we have some days for breakfast. But when it came to lunch, he wasn't all that interested. And I'm not sure if it was because I was feeling lazy, or just didn't have the stamina for a fight with the two seemingly more stubborn than usual kids this afternoon, but I let them eat their noodles in front of the tv. BIG MISTAKE! Jilly finished in ten minutes flat, no fighting, no muss, no fuss... now Riley on the other hand who has been known to be somewhat of a pill when it comes to eating has not given me a problem in the 7 meals he had eaten with me until lunch today. I have been witness to him refusing to eat at family dinners, but he had been good as gold for Auntie Chris. Well, after about twenty minutes of "no thank you, I not eating now" (got to give him credit, he was still polite) I told him he had ten more minutes to finish eating or I was going to turn off the tv.

Well, Miss Jilly heard that and was having NONE of it! She walked right over to him, sat down next to him and said "It's OK Riley-man, I help you." And she did, she proceeded to put noodles on the fork (for a little bit, she did start to use her fingers after a while) and fed him the rest of his noodles and all was right with the world.

And just so no one thinks I'm a mean neglectful Auntie, as soon as I was done changing Cooper's poopie diaper I was going to help him finish, but Jilly beat me to it. And that's why my camera lives on the living room floor, cause that's where all the action happens in my tiny little house.

Monday, February 2, 2009

" I take a nap?"

So after a very long day out yesterday with no nap, Jilly slept for the car ride home last night from Middleburg. As I was carring her in from the car last night she looked up at me and in her sweet little voice, innocently asked me "Mommy, I take a nap now?" She doesn't really get the difference between taking a nap and sleeping for the night, it is so precious, and just so "Jilly" if you know what I mean.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

The Big Game

For the Super Bowl, we went to Sunny and Mikey's. As always, Sunny had some great food (thanks Sunny). The boys played some football, the big girls rode their ponies, Sunny and I chatted, and then helped out around the barn. We ate tons of food, and then settled in for the game. The kids made some cookies, which was a feat in and of itself. Two pre-teens instructing a 6 year old and a 2 1/2 year old how to make cookies. Honestly, no one was hurt, and the cookies were not burnt, so I'd like to think of the night as a win. They all had fun, and that's the most important thing.

Warm Winter's Day

Today we went out to the barn to ride and hang out with the Tomlins for "The Big Game". Gran-ma and Pop-pop met us out there for the riding portion of the day. Friskey Whiskers came right to Grand-ma, and Jilly helped brush him and "make him handsome" before tacking him up. It is much easier if Jilly gets to the ring for a few minutes before the bigger girls, just so she does not get in their way. Jilly got the chance to "jump" (Friskey walks over ground polls) and she actually did trot on him today. Usually when she rides, nobody holds on to her any more, we just lead the pony. Well, with as bouncy as Friskey is when he trots I thought it would be a good idea for someone to hold on to her. She only lasted once around the ring, but she loved it and then wanted to canter...and we told her she had to be 6 before she canters!

Bug looked really good on Moose, I think they are going to be hard to beat this year, but then again I am a little biased! And Lex and Chester looked good as well, Chester was a little lazy, but let's face it...we prefer our ponies to be lazy rather than rowdy!

I can't wait for Spring to get here when the girls and I can go back to spending 3 or 4 nights a week out there for lessons, it is so pretty, and the fresh air is so wonderful for all of us.