Monday, June 18, 2007

The week and a half at home ...

... has been really nice. We've had company, and so of course I've cooked and cleaned a lot, but it's been really fun! Well, the cooking part anyway.

What happened was that I was just really in the cooking mood. When you go out of town, you don't cook at all, and I guess I just missed it. So I decided I'd have a couple of Johnathan's friends and their families over and call it a birthday party. :) I didn't even make a cake for my son. (Mom is making him one for is actual birthday, Wednesday.) It was great!

Menu: Hamburgers, grilled corn on the cob with citrus butter, lettuce wedges with creamy dressing, a veggie tray with crab dip stuffed in red peppers, garlic roasted potato wedges, stuffed jalapeno poppers, strawberry-citrus punch and a blackberry-nectarine crisp. Honestly none of the recipes were worth keeping, but it made for a very impressive meal, and tasted fine. Did I get any pictures of the spread? No. Amazing. Oh, and I also had Cheetos and snow cones for the kids!

Dad got to come spend most of the day with us, so we took him to Mario's that night to celebrate Father's Day. John and I got to sing with the band, too, so that was fun, and Dad snapped a few pictures of us performing! While he was here, Dad helped us put together Johnathan's swing set, but of course it rained during the party, so the kids didn't get to play on it! They still had fun playing with the new toys Johanthan got.

Kalleigh is now crawling and babbling up a storm. She's a real bright spot in our lives! She's into everything and just a couple of days ago began pulling up on things. Great. Onto the next level of baby-proofing! She's really trying to communicate, or at least it sure seems that way. When she sees John, she let's out a whole string of "da-da-da-da-da-da." What else is that supposed to mean? And when she's hungry, she's been putting her fingers in her mouth and crying, but using an "eee" vowel sound. It's the only time she cries with that vowel sound. I've been saying all along, "Do you want to eat?" and signing eat when I say it. She's only 8 1/2 months, for crying out loud! I recognize that these things may all be coincidental, but I'm not ready to rule out the possibility of these being the beginnings of first words.

I've enjoyed watching a pair of barn swallows grow their family in the corner of our porch. They had four baby birds and it's just been fascinating to me. Here's a picture of the birds at about a week old:

They're about 3 weeks old now and just look like they could take off any day now! Their tail feathers have just a little more to grow, and then it'll be an empty nest!

You see out of all that's happened, here's what I chose to take a picture of. My priorities are obviously out of whack.

Well, I do have a couple of new pics of the kids, so I'll put those up, too.

The infamous "cheeeeese!" smile after playing in the sprinklers.

Kalleigh, in a family heirloom dress of sorts, from Grammie. I have already boxed it up and sent it on to Shawn and Brit's baby, Addie.

The kids and I are heading to AR for a week and a half to help mom redo her living room. I love to do that sort of thing, so it will be fun! When we get back from that trip, we'll be home for a while, and that will be nice, too!

Monday, June 11, 2007


This is our week and a half at home in June, so what am I doing today? Absolutely nothing! (I guess eating, feeding kids, changing diapers or wiping poopy bottoms counts as nothing today!) So perhaps, nothing out of the ordinary would be more accurate. We have watched Peter Pan, played outside in the sprinklers and made snow cones today, but absolutely no housework.

California was an adventure. Of course we went for the international sacred a capella music symposium, called Ascending Voice, at Pepperdine, but we were able to sneak in a few other things as well!

I kept the kids in the mornings and some afternoons and then we had a couple of Pepperdine girls help watch the kids during the other times so I could go to the conference. The conference was very eye-opening to the fact that our fellowship is not the only people who practice a capella music. It was not a "Church of Christ" conference exclusively. There were people from the Mennonite, Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic and other churches.

Each evening a professional a capella group would perform. These styles ranged from Byzantine chant to more lyrical Gregorian chant to choral concert literature to folk songs! The groups were very specialized in their styles and each did them very well. It was obviously for a highly academic audience, and the audience was just that. We felt very inferior to many people there! Other big names who were there included Mike Cope, Jack Reese, Jack Boyd (ACU), Ken Starr, Rick Mars (Pepperdine), Cliff Ganus, III, Arthur Shearin (Harding), Gary Wilson (Lipscomb), and many others whom I'm sure I should know. And then there were John and Kim Hodges ... Which one of these is not like the others?

Harding, Lipscomb and Pepperdine each had a select group of chamber singers who performed. I only heard Harding's group, and they were outstanding. I was so proud to be a Harding grad at that concert! John heard the other two groups, and he said that he thought Harding's was the best and most professional. :) We thoroughly enjoyed the classes and the performances.

In our free time, we went to the beach, did Universal Studios one day and made it to downtown Hollywood. Here are a few pictures from the trip. (The rest are on facebook.)

Poor thing. It was so windy! The sand was blowing in her eyes!

Sand angel!

It was so beautiful ... a little chilly, but beautiful.

We had to fight for our turn, and then those women wouldn't get out of the way!

We really were there!

It was a whirlwind trip, but very good. It's always good to be home, though!