We recently enjoyed a visit to our dear friends Megan and Web's home --- it's located in Readyville, about 30 minutes from our house. We love going to "the farm" because it's a very peaceful place with lots of fun things to do outside.
This is the view from their driveway - beautiful!
We had a total of three families and four kidlets to play with...lots of swinging and sliding...
...and playing with "truts"...
Web even got out the four-wheeler and all the men-folk took turns giving rides.
Born to be wild.
I imagine if he could speak in sentences, Dawson would say, "Again, Daddy!"
My sweet boy and me after his first four-wheeler ride.
We all then ventured inside to enjoy Webburgers, hot dogs, potato salad, slaw, chips, brownies, cake...
...and of course, more playtime!
I told David he could give Mary Poppins a run for her money.
He told me he needed a Valium was glad to supervise.
Also this week, we also enjoyed a Thanksgiving feast at Dawson's preschool....is he not the cutest little indian ever??
His teacher, Mrs. Carmen, said she had to add an extra strip of paper to the headband to make it fit around his head --- so many brains, I tell ya!
Dawson was VERY excited to see all of his little friends performing. A group of older children stood in front of everyone and sang "God Our Father" to bless the meal --- so sweet!
I'm anxious to see Dawson perform when he's older and wonder if he'll be the kid in front, singing louder than everyone else? The kid in the back, picking his nose? The kid on the side, waving like crazy to his parents?
I really hope he's the slightly ghetto kid shaking his cute little tushy to the music.
We only have ONE MORE MONTH until we'll be in Disney World!!
We are getting so excited - we have all of our character lunches and dinners planned, our tickets...somebody stop us.
Some of my most wonderful childhood memories come from my family's trips to Disney, and so I am thrilled to be able to take Dawson there. I bought him this today to wear to the Very Merry Christmas Party with Mickey the first night we're there:
...because nothing says "I'm completely and totally obsessed" like a Mickey-ear-and-argyle-holiday sweater. Hello, Clark Griswold.
Anyway - this will be the first vacay that we've taken as a family of NINE...and the first with two under age two. Valium, anyone?
Here are the other things that will be different about this trip to Disney in comparison to the others we've taken:
1) We will actually sit down at a table to eat breakfast each morning. There will be no porking down pre-packaged donuts at the shuttle stop, followed by collective drinking from a singular water bottle.
2) My brother Jason will actually change clothes daily. There will be no wearing of the same wife-beater, puffy jacket and khakis for the entire 6 days. It's amazing what marriage can do.
3) We will actually see Disney World. There will be no blur of colorful objects zooming by us as we try- unsuccessfully- to keep up with my mother on her sprint-and-you-shall-see-it-all tour.
4) My brothers will embrace their maturity and not try to intentionally scare the characters as they cheerfully walk by us during the parades. Last time, Cinderella and the Little Mermaid had PTSD after my brothers acted like a combination of Rain Man and The Three Stooges.
5) We will actually sleep. Toddlers REQUIRE naps and at least seven hours of nightly rest. See number 3.
6) We will actually eat. Toddlers become hellacious demons without food. See number 3.
7) I will treat my child like a dog and use a sophisticated backpack/leash system to keep him with me at all times. I refuse to be that mom at Guest Services saying, "I just turned around for a second...!!!!"
8) We will have so much friggin-fraggin' fun it will be unbelievable.
We enjoyed this weekend by doing some new things in the oldest part of Murfreesboro. I love our town, and my absolute favorite part of it is the "downtown" section...most of which is situated on a square. The old courthouse is at the center, separated from small businesses by a road that travels around its four sides. These businesses include The City Cafe, a diner-type restaurant that's been open for ages (when soup was 15 cents, to be exact) and the Pastimes Barber Shop (think Floyd's in Mayberry) where a haircut is $10, a shave is $5 and after you're done, you can try your hand in the poolhall in the back. Dawson insists upon doing everything you do, exactly the way you do it, and wants to "help" with whatever he can. I love this age! Getting ready to leave City Cafe to go to the barber shop for his first big boy haircut! "Um...are you sure about this?" "You cannot be serious." Dawson was so good the whole time...the only point that he protested was when Ms. Donna sprayed the water bottle. "Two words: Nursing. Home." My little gentleman...we were so proud of him for sitting still! All done! "I know I look good."
We also met the Hutchings' at the Discovery Center so the kiddos could play...Dawson loves trucks of all kind, but he especially loves this fire truck! Sometimes, they have live animals you can pet, and we were there in time to meet the ferret... "I'm not so sure..." What he was sure about were, again, the trucks...any size, any shape... After the Discovery Center, we hit La Siesta, a local Mexican restaurant, for dinner. D-Man loves the chips!
I'd like to introduce you to Evelyn Johanna Quintanilla Cortez.
She is six and lives in El Salvador.
I'm very excited to be sponsoring her through Compassion International. There are several reasons that I decided to do this - and if you read here, you see one reason why.
When I was a senior in high school, I was fortunate enough to be able to participate in a mission trip to San Juan, Puerto Rico. I saw first-hand what poverty is like. Not just being "poor" - poverty. We helped build a two-room house out of plywood and taught VBS to children who, despite their poverty, radiated joy.
It's a powerful experience that stays with you forever.
When you log onto Compassion's website, you can look at photos and biographies of the children in need. There are so many.
Evelyn was my grandmother's name. I couldn't click "sponsor" fast enough.
Here is a little bit about Evelyn:
"Evelyn makes her home with her father and her mother. Making beds, running errands and cleaning are her household duties. Her father is employed as a laborer and her mother maintains the home. There are 3 children in the family.
As part of Compassion's ministry, Evelyn participates in church activities and Bible class. She is also in kindergarten where her performance is above average. Playing house, playing with dolls and jumping rope are her favorite activities."
I can't wait to find out more about her, and be able to write her letters and know that I'm helping her have nutrition, schooling and the access to Bible school and people there in El Salvador who have a passion for Christ. It costs $38 per month to do this.
I figured - my Savior was born in barn.
That's a darn good example of humility.
I'm not rich and won't ever claim to be. But I have been given more than I ever asked for, and I know Christ calls me to share what He's given.
"Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share." 1 Timothy 6:17-18
We spent this weekend in Chattanooga with my family, attending Brandon's Homecoming football game at Baylor and also dropping in on the Trunk or Treat at my parents' church.
Friday night began with Baylor vs. Father Ryan...honestly, we could have cared less about the game because the real win was Brandon being crowned Homecoming King!
Cutest. Baylor Fan. Ever.
G-Pa the Great and his Dawsie-Pooh watching the game...
Sharing popcorn with Uncle Bo...
The senior atheletes were presented with their parents...
...and they were all recognized for their acheivements.
Then came the exciting part! Brandon was presented as a nominee for Homecoming King...the announcer said, "And the 2009 Baylor Homecoming King is..."
At this point, I may or may not have been yelling at the top of my lungs in concert with all of the other family members present.
Congrats from the administration...WE WERE SO EXCITED!!! Baylor lost to Father Ryan, but we did not care. After the game, we headed down to the field to greet the King!
"Ma'am, are you with the press?"
My cute parents and their baby...
The King and I...
Brandon left to reign over the Homecoming Dance and Dawson took over the field...he's already trying to lead the NFL in rushing. After a VERY late night, we woke up Saturday preparing for the Trunk or Treat at Red Bank Baptist.
Yeah, he's pretty much the cutest mouse I've ever seen. :)
Daddy and Mickey...
Pregnancy, labor, delivery, recovery, sleepless nights, stains on my clothes, temper tantrums...every single bit of it is worth the smile on my grandpa's face.
After posing with his fan club, Mickey headed to Red Bank Baptist to do a little Trunk or Treating... "Can we please just go get candy now? Maybe play some?"
Blowing bubbles at the preschool station...
Dawson decided pizza was actually better than candy...
...and that his costume was actually better than his clothes. "What the...you mean it's over??"
Given this label by her husband, she lives up to it with her love of etiquette, Elvis and entertaining - and the occasional (small) piece of Mississippi Mud. She has a slight addiction to Diet Coke and cosmetics and loves Christ and her family more than anything.
The Charming Yankee
A Minnesota transplant, he traded goolash for grits and the Vikings for the Vols. He's been known to say it's the best move he ever made, and can't imagine how he ever lived without sweet tea and perfect strangers calling him "honey." His best friend is about two feet tall and calls him "Daddy."
The Sophisticated Gentleman
Also known as The Master to the Southern Belle and the Charming Yankee, this blue-eyed flirt enjoys playing, giving kisses and the Disney Channel. He's as sweet as pie - which makes you want to eat him up.
My little family and I live in Middle Tennessee...we love it here! My husband, David, works in pharmaceutical sales and my "occupation" is real estate agent. My "career", however, is stay-at-home mom! It's the best job I've ever had. Our little son, Dawson, is three years old and is the joy of our lives. Family is important to me - I have two brothers: Jason is an officer in the Army and Brandon is a cadet at the Air Force Academy. We hope this blog allows our family and friends who aren't close to us geographically a little insight into our world! Thank you for visiting!