Friday, August 20, 2010


I got an iphone this week.  I know, fancy, right!  Anyway, that's not really what this post is about.  While setting up the phone (does anyone else find the process of choosing ringtones annoying?) the kids came in and wanted to hear the ringtone.  I'd chosen the tone called "old phone," it sounds old phone circa 1950-80 ringing.  So I played the ringtone and all 3 kids laughed and said, "What's that supposed to be?"


That's when I realized they have never heard a phone with a bell ringer!  I shouldn't be surprised because we've not had a "landline" in all the time they can remember.  But still, it's a shock to the system to be reminded of how much things have changed just within my lifetime.  Both sets of my grandparents had those heavy, black rotary dial phones.  In fact, until I was a teenager my Granny had a "party line."  The old lady who shared the line was ALWAYS on the phone!  Could you imagine that today?  It's not like this is ancient history we're talking about; I'm not THAT old.  (Shut it!  I hear that snorting and snickering!)

My children have never lived without cellphones, video games, satellite TV and the Internet.  They are very savvy, not only technologically so but also environmentally and gastronomically.  They remind ME to turn off lights and not to run the water when I brush my teeth.  They sigh and shake their heads whenever they see people clearing land and cutting down trees.  They question the origin of their hamburgers' beef and want to know if their fruit is organic.  I'm amazed at their sophistication -- I did not teach them a lot of this stuff -- they are just products of their era.

Of course, they are still kids (thankfully).  They ride bikes, play outside, run in the house, and jump on the furniture.  At the same time I marvel at the differences in our childhoods, I smile at the similarities.  It all makes me wonder...what will they live through?  What will their children never live with and without?

Much Love,
- J

PS -- I'm not daft, I know this is not a perfect time we're living in, but I know there is more good than evil.  I would drown in fear if I thought about all the chaos, hate, and danger prowling today.  You can say what you will, but I choose to focus on the positive in the hopes that I can increase the amount of good, beauty, and love in the world.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Big Girls Now

Posting two days in a row?!  Shocking, I know.  But there's been some big time events the past few days and I'd be remiss if I didn't document them.  Last week, on the first day of school, my two sweet baby girls turned SEVEN.  I cannot believe they are seven years old!  We had a little pool party on Saturday complete with pink elephant cupcakes and a giraffe mini-cake.  Evie loves elephants and Kallie is my giraffe girl.  We had a great time with friends and family.  The girls got new bikes and some other great things, but they were most excited about this.....

Yep, my two babies got their ears pierced yesterday.  Now I've got two big girls complete with bejeweled ears.  There were a few tears (from them) and a little doubt (from all of us).  In the end, however, they are happy and I'm excited, too!
As my sisters can attest, this ritual was a big deal in our house growing up.  We had to wait until we were 10 to get earrings, but it meant we were big girls.  And they are big girls - sweet, kind, and helpful.  I love those two!

Evie didn't want me to take her picture just after the piercing.  She asked me to wait, "Until my face isn't so red and puffy from crying."  Seriously.  We are definitely raising a priss here!  Kallie wanted to choose skull studs.  "Ooooo, these are cool!", she said.  I convinced her to pick gold hearts with crystals in the middle.  Hint - She is NOT the priss we are raising.  Holdyn's only comment after the piercings was, "I'm glad I'm not a girl!"  This will not be the last time in his life he thinks that, I'm sure.

It's as crazy here as ever!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


I have turned into a horrible blogger!  And while I'll admit I like the idea of people reading what I right (frustrated writer), the entire purpose of this blog is to document what's going on in our lives so that later we can remember it all.  FAIL. 

I've got a break from the "murder drive" today so I'm going to post and try to catch up....

School has begun and we now have a 4th grader and two 2nd graders.  It is ridiculous to me how fast these three have grown!  This year marks a lot of firsts, not the least of which is that it's the first year that I was not there for "back to school".  Thankfully, K is awesome and took a few photos of the big morning.  He also called me as soon as he dropped the kids off and gave me the morning report.

As most of you know, I wasn't there because I've just begun my PhD program at the University of Alabama.  I'm excited and scared and intimidated all at once!  However, I know this is the thing I should be doing because we have been so blessed.  I thought with my teaching responsibilities that I'd need to be driving to Tuscaloosa (197 miles round-trip) four times a week.  Last week, while in orientation I received my assignments for this semester's work and found that I would not have to be on campus for work!!!!  I can complete all of my GTA work online and just go to Tuscaloosa for class 2 afternoons a week and then for any special events/meetings.  I cannot tell you what a load that has taken off; driving three hours a day is exhausting!

Well, it's time for my first school drop-off of the year!  Smiles all around here!

Much Love,

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


That's all I can say!  I stumbled across this awesome, inspiring blog last week.  Gayle is the mom of four kids and she (along with her husband) eat each week on a grocery budget of $60.  That's right, $60 a week for a family of 6 (including at least one teenage boy)!!!  That also includes toiletries but not make-up, clothes, etc.  Also, they only spend $40 per week on gas ($20/2cars).  They do have a garden and she homeschools the kids.  However, judging by our food consumption this summer that may not be a budget helper!  Perhaps my favorite thing about Gayle's plan is that she doesn't use coupons -- that's right NO COUPONS!  Considering that I absolutely loathe coupons, this chick immediately won my favor.

We used to have a much tighter grocery budget, but lately we've gotten a little lax.  I'm ready to tighten the reins; thankfully not because we HAVE to, but just to be more responsible.  We are wasting a lot and we know better!!  That extra cash could be used to pay off some debt and boost our savings.  I'm not sure I want to immediately cut back to $60 per week, but I'm really considering $80.  We'll see.

So, not to be nosy, but I'm wondering what do you spend each week on groceries?  What about clothes, shoes, gas, etc?  Just wondering...

Much Love,