Friday, September 29, 2006

Teaching His Students

One of Johnathan's favorite books right now is "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?" by Bill Martin and Eric Carle. I caught him reading to the dogs and thought it was too cute not to get a couple of pictures! The dogs are always so tolerant. :)

"Bison! This is a purple cat!"

Nope, not wearing clothes again ...

I think this is another attempt to hang on to any ounce of control he may still have before Kalleigh gets here. This, thank goodness, is a very positive expression of control! His other "expressions" (drawing on the chair, taking the fabric softener cup out of the washer, putting Wal-Mart bags in the washer ... as the clothes are washing, hitting the neighbor boy) from TODAY have been, well, less than positive. I admit I'm a little nervous about his behavior when we bring this baby into our house who "won't go home!" However, there is hope, for his Bible class teacher told us that during play time, he got a baby doll, wrapped it in a blanket, sat in a rocking chair and started singing to it. The teacher asked him if that was his little sister. He said, "No, it's my Baby Kalleigh!"

My, how I can relate to my son, though! It's so hard for me to give up control or to function in a situation where I don't have complete control. I might not draw on the chair, but I might close up and choose not to talk to people and wallow in my self-pity. At least I can control that environment! But as John and I can see the big picture of the changes that are about to happen to our family, God can see how each change in our lives plays into His plan.

Teach me, Father! Thank you for allowing me to be Your student. Help me to listen, not only tolerantly, but willingly, with an open heart so that I, too, can understand Your plan more fully!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

A couple more layouts us Curtis folks might like

I am FINALLY getting these pages done. The pictures were taken back in May, and I've known I wanted to scrap them in a 2 page layout. Anyway, here they are: My Heroes.

For anyone who cares, the paper and rub-ons are Basic Grey and the leather lable holder and clear frame are Making Memories. The journaling is from Proverbs 31:25-26.

Again, paper and black rub-ons are Basic Grey; white rub-ons from My Mind's Eye, the ribbon charm is Making Memories, and the "Hero" cardstock sticker is from Die Cuts With a View. It reads: Hero \he-ro\ n. pl. 1. In mythology and legend, a man, often of divine ancestry, who is endowed with great courage and strength, celebrated for his bold exploits, and favored by the gods. 2. A perosn noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose, especially one who has risked or sacrificed his or her life.

Perhaps feverishly scrapping counts as nesting?? Just a thought ...

Sunday, September 24, 2006

More to post today

Post #2 for today. If you want to read all about a scrap retreat, read the next blog entry. If not, this one's much shorter. :)

I said I'd post some links to some layouts I made this weekend. Here are three:
Blue Eyes
First Day of School

The other thing, for all of you worried that my son doesn't wear enough clothes (hee hee), is that Johnathan came up to me today in sort of a panic, and said, "Mommy! I not have clothes on!" Holding back my laughter, I said, "Well, what should we do?" "I need to put some clothes on!" And so we put some clothes on him. :)

Creative Memories Scrap Retreat

It was my last chance to have a little weekend getaway before the baby comes. Don't worry; it was only 25 minutes from my house. :)

One of my friends is a Creative Memories consultant, so I guess she's technically MY CM consultant ... but she's still my friend. :) I have gone to her house on occasion for her crop nights. When she first invited me, I asked if it was okay that I didn't really use very many CM products. She said sure, so I figured a night of scrapping was okay ... even if most everybody else was using only CM products.

She told us about this weekend crop here at Camp Tyler. I had never been to a scrapbook retreat, and since this was the least expensive one I'd ever heard of, I figured I should go! This would also give me a great chance to make a few pages ahead of time for Kalleigh's baby book, so that all I'll have to do is slap down a few pictures and call it done.

I learned quickly that most people come with at least one other friend to these types of things, so I found myself sitting alone for the first couple of hours. Honestly, it wasn't that bad ... it meant I didn't have to make shallow conversation with people who were distracting my from my scrapping! But, after a while someone else from my consultant's clientele showed up and sat my me. The great thing is that she isn't much of a talker, either, so we got along great and got a lot of scrapping done!

For several of my layouts I either inked or sanded some of my edges of my photo mats or the background paper itself. I noticed that people kept staring over in my direction and then whispering to each other. They had these puzzled looks on their faces--a bit concerned. Finally someone came over and said, "I just have to know what you're doing." I told her that I was inking my edges. "So, what does that do, exactly?" she asked. I said, "It just makes the paper seem to pop off the page a little more ... see?" And I showed her a before and after example. "Oh, wow! I've never heard of that!" she said, and went back to tell her buddies. Now I've been inking and sanding for a couple of years now, and I thought that anyone who scrapped close to a page a week would be very familiar with that technique. It's SO common on my favorite website,, and probably over-used. Anyway, everyone at this retreat just seemed so amazed with this "new idea." Later the next day, I was sanding another edge, and another lady came over an said, "Okay, I just have to see this. They were all talking about it over there," where she came from, I guess. So, I showed her, and afterwards she said, "Oh, wow!" and looked a little embarrassed, as if I had just showed her something naughty!

Another time during weekend, another one of the consultants came over and said, "Wow, these are pretty pages! But I don't really see any Creative Memories products." I assured her that I had used my CM paper trimmer, CM scissors and CM pen, all of which I couldn't do without. Admittedly, none of the cardstock or patterned paper or rub-ons or ribbon were CM, which is all you see, besides the pictures, on a LO, so her concern was valid. :) Then she asked how long it took me to make that particular page. It had taken me about 1 1/2 hours, and she was floored. She said that she would never spend that much time on one page, which is one reason she used CM exclusively. I told her that I enjoyed the process and the results of spending that much time on a page. She went on to say that since she was a CM consultant, she would never use THOSE products ... but they were pretty!

These people are so weird!! It's like a cult! They are dedicated to scrapping in this CM world no matter how much better other scrap products are. And I'm not sure why they are so devoted! A recurring phrase I heard regarding their products was, "The products are getting so much better than they were!" "Why use products that are just "okay" or "getting better," but not great? I don't get it. They don't sell any stamps or rub-ons or ribbons or eyelets or brads or photo corners or chipboard ... all of which I LOVE to put on layouts, and their paper and stickers are just so "cutesy." Just not my style, I guess. It's like they're martyrs for their CM cause ... they know it's not as good as other products, but they wouldn't cheat--ever--even if it means their pages won't ever be as good as they could be.

I had one lady who looked at my pages, which btw looked so incredibly different from anyone else's there, and said, "I'd love to make pages like that, but I can't seem to break out the CM world." SEE??!! They get you roped in, and you can't get out!

Another person looked at one of my layouts and asked if I had done some stamping on the paper. I explained that it was just a decorative rub-on. "A what?" she asked. So, I showed her what a rub-on is. "Oh, wow!" came that same slightly embarrassed response again.

I felt kind of bad, in a way. It's like I was exposing this very naive world to a whole new world of evil scrapbooking. Most of them had never even been to either of the two scrapbook stores in town, for they would never get caught in there! It was absolutely hilarious.

To defend the CM world, all of their products are the best quality you can find. I love my big CM scrap bag and my scissors, paper trimmer and pen. I'll continue to buy these things from CM. Plus, their biggest message is to put your memories on paper, which is priceless, no matter how "cutesy" it looks. :) Sorry if I offended any die-hard CM folks.

All in all, I had a fabulous time. How bad can it be to scrap for two days in a row?! Plus I won a "side-kick;" a cup holder and scrap catcher that you clip to the table--it's great! I got 14 pages done, half of which were new pages for Kalleigh's book, since I doubt I'll have much time for scrapping after she gets here. I'll be posting some of these layouts on "Peek," so I'll put a link to them here in the next couple of days.

I really love to scrap. I love that when I'm gone, my kids or grandkids will be able to go back and know who I was and how much I loved each of them by what I've done in these scrapbooks. I may not do it forever, but it's certainly a part of who I am now. It's also my creative outlet since I couldn't draw if my life depended on it!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Common sense? Yeah right ...

You'd think that if I asked Johnathan to put something in the trash, he's put ALL of it in the trash. That would just be common sense. Here's the scene:

Johnathan came into our room holding a cassette tape that he had pulled all of the tape out of. Honestly, not a big loss, because we hadn't ever listened to that particuar tape and probably wouldn't. "Uh-oh, Mommy!"

"Well, it's ruined now. Please go throw it in the trash can."

He left, and a little while later, I went into the kitchen to find this:

If you can't tell what's going on here, the cassette part is in the trash, and the tape part is hanging out of the trash can and strewn all over the floor!

Two-year-olds have no common sense.

Yesterday when I picked up Johnathan from school, I looked in the classroom, and all of the children were sitting nicely on the mats ... except for Johnthan and another little boy, Jackson. They were jumping up and down around in circles. Ms. Sheri was getting on to them. Ms. Heather (his class has two teachers) met me at the door, and said how fun it is to teach Johnathan; that he is always saying something funny. She had asked him earlier if his mommy had a baby in her tummy. Johnathan answered, "No, a Kalleigh."

How did John and I end up with a class clown? We who were both so afraid of getting in trouble that we were NEVER sent to the principal's office EVER! We two introverts have this wild child that apparently keeps his teachers in stitches and on their toes. Doesn't God have a sense of humor?

Here's our little clown:

Oh! And I got Kalleigh's name up on her wall! I used wooden letters and a foam butterfly from Wal-Mart and covered them with Daisy D's baby girl paper. It was fun!

Monday, September 18, 2006

Stress tests

Last week at my appointment, Kalleigh's heartrate was in the 190's, which had us a little concerned. So, we did a stress test to make sure it came back down. It did, of course, so everything was fine. She was just doing some gymnastics inside, I guess!

So this week, her heartrate was in the lower 130's. Good grief, child--what's going on? So, my doctor wanted to do ANOTHER stress test to make sure it would come back up soon. Of course, it did, like right when they started the test.

It's nice to be reassured, but it's getting sort of pricy paying for these each week. I'm glad that we have ways to tell if the baby inside is doing okay, so I'm sure it's worth it ... just a minor annoyance, I suppose.

I'm a "loose 1 cm," according to Doc Harris, and 50% effaced. It could be any day now! ... yeah right--we all know better than that. :)

John's in Abilene at Lectureship through Wednesday. We really miss him when he's gone! Honey, if you read this tonight, know that I love you and miss you!

Johnathan and I are having Ground Beef Oriental tonight. (I love that recipe, Aunt Kathy!) Just 10 more minutes and it's done ... and I'm STARVING!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Here's what's going on with us. Not incredibly exciting; just the latest:

This morning we had "Singing School." This is where all of the praise team gets together and basically has a singing work and play day. We went through some warm-up exercises, including shoulder rubs. That alone was probably worth me being there! John took us through some basic theory, since many of the people who sing have no idea how to read music. Then I did a little segment on solfege and shaped notes, which was really fun for me. Papaw C. taught me shaped notes, and they have been my faithful crutch ever since! We project the words along with the lyrics in our worship assemblies (John makes them himself!) and we chose to use shaped notes on that. People occasionally ask questions about them, and I'm usually the one to answer.

Anyway, then we played three different versions of an Encore-type game, which were fun and let people loosen up a bit. Then we went through about 8-10 newer songs that we'll be looking to putting into our services soon.

Afterwards, we all ate sub sandwiches, chips and cookies, and had a nice time to visit with each other.

I was really impressed with the turnout! This is the first time we had ever done anything like this here, and I would guess that we had about 30 people there. It's great to be back in the south!

After "Singing School," John, Johnathan and I went to Andy's Custard. Now if you've never heard of, or been to, an Andy's before, you don't know what you're missing. For those of you on a diet, it may be better that way. Andy's has things like the "James Brownie Jackhammer." This mouth-watering invention is their frozen custard blended with brownies that they put in a cup, dig out the center, and fill the empty middle space with fudge. Oh my ...

John took Johnathan home and I ran to Hobby Lobby to get some adhesive in preparation for the scrapbook retreat I'm going to next weekend. And then I bought a 3 foot scarecrow because it was 50% off. :) It looks cute out on my front porch, and even better since it replaced the fake tulips I have had out there since March!

Then I hit Wal-Mart in hopes that it will be the last BIG Wal-Mart run before the baby is born. Hey, here's to hoping!

Other random things of interest (or not) from today:

I killed ANOTHER black widow spider just outside our house.

I delivered a package of Peter Rabbit scrap stuff that I had leftover from Johnathan's baby book to a person I happened to meet randomly in the scrapbook store yesterday who happened to be looking for those types of things exactly. Since I will not be using any more PR stuff for scrapbooks, I told her I'd be glad for her to have them. She gave me her address and I dropped it off today!

My feet look like water balloons with 5 Lil' Smokies on the end of each one.

My ligaments are so loose that I wobble around when I'm tired ... which has been much more frequently the past couple of days. In fact, I took a nap from 6 to 7 tonight, and only woke up because John came in and asked how long I wanted to sleep! (I had no intention of falling asleep ... just wanted to "rest my eyes" a bit!) And here it is a little after 8:30, and I could go right to bed. I'd be up in a couple of hours anyway needing to pee. :)

The best book I have read in a while (since I hardly read at all) is "The Girlfriend's Guide to Pregnancy." Has anyone else read it? It's everything your doctor won't tell you about being pregnant. It is HILARIOUS. Of course, in on my hormonal roller coaster, everything is extra funny or extra sad or extra ... you fill in the blank. The writer explains it this way (and I'll paraphrase, "It's like your emotions are constantly in 4th gear, so that you don't ease into an emotion. You hit it at 70 mph!" There were several times when I had to put the book down (and my knees together) because I was laughing too hard to keep reading! Kristi, when you get pregnant, I'm either buying you your own copy or giving you mine.

Enough for now. Hope everyone is having a good weekend!

Thursday, September 14, 2006


So, it was naptime. Johnathan was pretty sleepy, so I didn't think going to sleep would be too hard today. I got him all tucked in, we said our prayer and I closed the door.

About 2 minutes later, I hear, "Mommy! Where's my blanket??" Oh no. I had forgotten. It was in the dreaded washing machine. Not the dryer where I could yank it out and rush the tattered threads into him. No, the washing machine that I had run that morning.

"Johnathan," I say as sweetly as possible, "it's in the washer, baby. I bet you can take a nap without it just this once."

The floodgates of his eyes were opened and the wailing began. He was sooo overtired.

What to do? I couldn't give him his wet blanket, which was now running in the dryer. He needed to take a nap right then because we had other plans that evening and I couldn't wait around for the dryer to sufficiently dry his blanket and then for him to have his nap. Hmmm ...

"Johnathan, do you want to borrow one of Baby Kalleigh's new blankets for today?"

"Yyyeeah," again, through sobs.

I pulled one that I thought felt the most like his old one and took it into him. Tucking him in, again, I said, "Isn't that nice that Baby Kalleigh can share her blanket with you? Maybe one day you can share your blanket with her!" "Okay," was his whispered reply, as he was already half asleep.

Mean old Mommy just had to pull out the camera before I woke him to show him one day how he slept with his little sister's blanket because his was in the washer! His high school girlfriends are going to love this:

Monday, September 11, 2006

Faith like a child

First I have to start off by telling a story that Patsy Clairmont told at the Women of Faith conference: She went to a bookstore and found her way to the children's books. There, a little girl, maybe 4, saw her, and pointing to a nearby chair said, "Sit!" Patsy said that she wasn't sure what was so compelling about this child's demmand, but what else was she supposed to do? So she sat! Then the little girl said, "I'm going to sit here and you're going to read this book to me." And she handed Patsy a book. A little stunned, Patsy accepted the book, and again was compelled to obey! A bit later, the girl's mother came to retrieve her daughter. Patsy looked up a little sheepishly at the mother as if she had been caught. "She made me do it!" said Patsy! The mother gave Patsy a look that seemed to say, "This is not the first time this has happened," and took her child by the hand, and they went on their way!

I wonder if God ever feels compelled to listen to children the same way.

Here's today's experience:

It was raining. Granted, a 10 minute shower, but for which I was VERY grateful. I was swinging on the back porch swing while Johnathan ran around in the rain. (No, Mom, it wasn't lightening or anything.) :) Johnathan said to me, "I want the rain to stop." To which I replied, "Oh, son, only God can make the rain stop." Then he looked up at the sky, blinking drops of rain out of his eyes, and in the most commanding voice a 2-yr-old can muster shouted out, "Stop!"

And it did.

Johnathan looked satisfied, but not surprised, and continued playing in the yard.

Seriously, the sun came out and the rain stopped! It's as if God had the same reaction as Patsy. When a child says something with so much faith that whatever he asks for will be done, what's one to do?

Why is it so hard for me to ask with such confidence? Like I'm going to hurt God's feelings by asking for something too big? I don't think so!

Thank you, God, for teaching me daily through my child! Open my eyes and ears so I can continue to learn!

Thursday, September 07, 2006


Well, it's here. The day that I could have this baby safely. Term. 36 weeks. Today.

I have the nursery all set up, except for the sheets on the crib and her name that I want to put on the wall. All of her new little clothes are hanging in the closet. Her teeny-tiny shoes are on her shelf. The mobile is assembled and hung. The organizing baskets are in order and filled--one with newborn diapers (Wow, they're tiny! I'm hoping she won't be just huge so she'll actually be able to wear them!). Johnathan's "big-boy" booster carseat is installed, and he has adjusted nicely. The infant seat is turned back around to face the rear. She could really come today and it would be okay!

John and I have been practicing our breathing/focusing/relaxing excercises. For some reason, it's heavy on my heart not to have an epidural. It's so different than with Johnathan, when I thought it was absolute madness to even think about going without. I don't feel like I have to prove anything to anyone or live up to anyone else's standards. Part of me is afraid of having a bad epidural. Johnathan's was so perfect that I can't imagine going into another labor expecting no pain whatsoever, and then having to deal with hot spots or an ineffective epidural, for whatever reason. There's a big part of me that is very attracted to the idea of having power over my body by using my mind. Mom always said I was pretty strong-willed and could do whatever I wanted to! Of course we all know that means I was really stubborn and hard-headed. Well, maybe it will pay off in the weeks to come. I've decided, too, that it's going to be okay if I'm not able to go through with it and ask for the epidural--hey, that's why they're there! I will not feel like a failure. I just have to try and see!

As you can tell, there's a lot of self-convincing going on in the previous paragraph. However, that nagging tug at my heart for not wanting an epidural refuses to go away. I have to listen to that! We'll see when we reach 6 cm ... :)

Here are a couple of pictures that I took in my little homemade studio of me at 36 weeks. I haven't been able to get the family really geared up for a photo shoot, so this may have to do!

And now, the waiting game begins!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Speaking Funt

We always get comments on how well Johnathan speaks for his age. I guess that's right, for I don't really have anything else to compare to. He already says his r's better than I did at 6, so I guess that's good. But here's a funny stage we're going through: Johnathan is putting a "t" at the end of many of his words. For example, "I'm dunt" (I'm done), "Bisont," "Nathant," "spoont." I'm seeing a pattern here for the first time that it's words that end in "n." I can't think of any others that he says that don't.

Anyone ever heard of this slight impediment?

Friday, September 01, 2006

Son Down

"Mothers of little boys work from son up till son down" --Unknown, but surely a mother of a boy!

I'm totally scrapping this picture with those words!

Ooops, he's awake! Back to work!