Thursday, August 26, 2010


First day of school

All three kids are in school this year! Woo-hoo! Johnathan, first grade, of course goes everyday. Kalleigh goes MWF. Jonas just goes MW. Everyone was excited and ready to go! Interestingly enough, in each of my kids' classes there was one or more children crying on that first day. In Johnathan's class, it was the little girl sitting next to him. He whispered to me, "Mommy, what's wrong with her?" Not using this as a lesson in compassion as I probably should've, I said, "I don't know, Baby. Just be nice to her." Similarly, in Kalleigh's class, a child was crying. Kalleigh looked at me and said, "Mommy, she's hurting my ears." Oh, we need to work on that compassion at home! Jonas just ignored the crying kids in his class and went about his business of playing. I'm thankful that my kids are pretty independent. I'm sure this 4th child will be "THAT" child.

And we should be compassionate. Not my strong suit.

It's okay to call your first grade boy "Baby."

Just had to show this comparison of Johnathan and Jonas on their first days at Little People's School. :)

Obviously I had more time for photo editing when Johnathan was 2.

Obviously I had an actual camera when Johnathan was 2.

First time on the Praise Team

Kalleigh "sang" with me on the praise team this past Sunday! Well, we turned her mic off, but she thought she was! I thought it would give her a way to feel more involved and responsible rather than coloring or eating the whole time, which is what we usually do. For the most part, she did great! She got a little tired toward the end and started scratching the top--it just feels so weird, you know--so I'm glad we had it off. :)

First time ever to see a picture like this:

Okay that's a lie. I just think it's so funny when Bison sleeps upside down. Forgive him for his lack of modestly. He just doesn't care.

I doubt you've seen this kind of picture with a Batman Croc in the background.

I always try to have shoes in my pictures. It makes it them so much more real.

First Ladies Bible Class

Our assignment for the first day of LBC was to read the introduction of the book we will be studying this semester. We were also all supposed to bring salads for our salad luncheon. Also, at the beginning of each class, we all meet together for a devotional before we break into our groups for our book study. I was asked to do the first one.

The day before, I remembered one of the three things: my devotional. The night before, after my children had gone to sleep, I remembered the other two: salad and introduction. Introduction, no problem. Got it read. Salad, problem. Kids were asleep (with John out of town) and I have no lettuce, no spinach, no cabbage, no salad-y things of any kind. What do you do when you need the perfect recipe with only the ingredients you have? Go to Mamaw's cookbook, of course! Found it: potato salad. Who cares if I had never made potato salad in my life? If Mamaw says it's good, it's good.

For my devotional, I had decided to share the forward of Mamaw's cookbook. It's a devotional thought for sure as it compares the need for both physical and spiritual food! Then, as I was chopping up my ingredients for the potato salad, I thought, "Why don't I just bag up the separated, pre-measured ingredients and stir this potato salad up while I'm reading the devotional?" Sounded great, so that's exactly what I did.

It was a lot harder than I had originally thought. I was READING, people. I couldn't look at what I was putting into the bowl! Thanks to half-decent peripheral vision and a little luck, I got that thing made about the time I finished reading the forward. The ladies loved it, I plugged Mamaw's book, my salad for the luncheon was made, and I'm done with devo-duty for the semester. :)

Of course, I had to call Mamaw right afterward to tell her all about it!

Hope everyone else's "firsts" of the semester are going well, too!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Two Big!

Jonas turned two a week ago. For our little family/Deans celebration, Jonas wanted to go to Chuck E. Cheese.

This is nothing new. If we are within 5 blocks of CEC Jonas starts looking out the window, quietly saying, "Chuck E. Cheese? Chuck E. Cheese?" I think he's been once that he might remember. At the end of the school year, Johnathan's class had a party there. Anyway, as soon as CEC comes into view, Jonas, in an excited/panicky scream yells, "CHUCK E. CHEESE!!! CHUCK E. CHEESE!! CHUCK E. CHEESE!!" until he can no longer see it. So of course, when asked where he wanted to go for his birthday ... exactly.

With as much energy and motivation as I could scrape up that day, I made chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting, and "decorated" them by spelling out Jonas's name a couple of times across the cupcakes and then slapped a "2" candle in the middle. Poor 3rd child! For Johnathan's 2nd birthday, we had two different celebrations for some reason and I made two cakes: Big Bird and Tigger. And we went to CEC. I just hope and pray that Jonas will not need therapy because of this discrepancy.

Anyway, we had a great time, ate all of the pizza and cupcakes and Terry and I had some great conversation while the rest of the grownups took the kids around to play games! Perfect!

 Backing away from the flame and still trying to blow it out. Heehee. We might have helped him a little.

 Jonas's biggest reaction was to new clothes. That's my kid. :)

Speaking of clothes, Sunday morning, Jonas decided to outgrow all of his 2T pants. Luckily I had pulled a 2 & 3T box down from the attic some months ago and we found an outfit for church. So, it was time to go through his clothes. I had 6 boxes already out in the garage of clothes that all of the kids had outgrown over the past year that I had just piled there to sit until I could no longer put off putting them up in the attic. The time had come.

Tuesday I had a burst of energy (Woo-hoo!!!) and decided to get it done. The plan was to pull down the couple of 3T boxes and store the others. When I got up to the attic, I remembered when I saw them that a friend had given me FOUR boxes of 3Ts a year ago. Add that to my two, and I suddenly had SIX boxes of 3T clothes. People, Jonas is set. After putting away all I could, I still have 2 full boxes of 3T winter clothes and another almost full box of 3s that looked big or were actually 4s. Crazy, but I'm so thankful!

So my barely-2-yr-old is square into 3s. Bless his heart. What can I say? We make 'em sturdy. :)

Happy birthday, my sweet big boy. You were the perfect labor & delivery. You made our 8-year anniversary extra special that year! You do everything in your power to keep up with your brother and sister. You love your blanket and your thumb. You entertain yourself quite well. You are a clown and a half, doing anything for a laugh. And I love you so much!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The Broken Leg ... oh, yeah, and the family reunion

Bless her heart. Kalleigh broke her leg almost 2 weeks ago. She was jumping on the trampoline and from what I can tell, it just buckled underneath her. Our orthopedic surgeon said that this kind of "buckle break" is common for her age! Crazy.

She broke it around 1pm on a Wednesday. I had said she could go jump on the trampoline for 5 minutes before nap time. Brilliant. I went out when I heard the screaming, but had no idea what had happened. I carried her in, examined her leg, and couldn't tell anything from looking. No bruising, swelling, nothing. So I told her to go ahead and go potty and she could rest it during her nap. Well, she took a few steps and then just collapsed, screaming. So I helped her take care of her potty business and went ahead and put her down for her nap. Thankfully, she fell right asleep.

I made the phone calls for advice to John and Mom, then spent a little time reading about broken legs in children and came to the conclusion that it warranted an x-ray. I called my pediatrician and the soonest we could get in was 4:00. Thankfully, "Miss Terry" was ready and willing to watch the boys while I got Kalleigh to the doctor!

The doctor mashed around on her leg while she and I both cringed and he said his best guess what that she had hyper-extended her knee because she winced the most when he put that backwards pressure on her knee. But if she had a broken tibia just below the kneecap and he was trying to hyper-extend it, of course that would hurt like ... a lot!

We sneaked into the x-ray place just before they closed. Since I'm pregnant, I couldn't be in the room where the x-rays were being taken, but instead of having me wait out in the hallway, they just brought me around the corner where the x-rays were being scanned in! I could see that something was not normal, but of course the technician wasn't allowed to say anything. They said they didn't know when the radiologist would be in to read the x-rays, so we should just wait for a call either that evening or the next morning.

Needless to say, church was a bust for us that night. I took the kids home while John took care of church duties. I wrapped her little leg with ice and an ace bandage, propped it up and let the kids watch a Veggie Tales before bedtime.

Thankfully, I did get the call that evening saying that, yes, the leg was broken and that I needed to call the pediatrician's office first thing in the morning to set up an appointment with the orthopedic surgeon, because of course our insurance requires a referral ... more to come on that ...

I put Kalleigh in the now-vacant crib, since we moved Jonas into the other kids' room into his big boy bed. I could just see Jonas trying to climb into Kalleigh's bed early in the morning with her broken leg. That would be fabulous. Thankfully, Kalleigh didn't object to the crib, and thought it was kind of cool for one night.

By the way, we were supposed to leave the next day for the Curtis family reunion up in AR. Timing ...

First thing in the morning, as instructed, I called the doctor and asked if an appointment with the Orth. Surg. had been made yet so that they could cast my daughter's leg. The poor, uninformed receptionist was defensive immediately. "Well, we're going to have to call over there to set that up, and a lot of times they don't want to cast it for 2-3 days." Seriously. Okay, I could understand if we already had a soft cast put on, but my baby's BROKEN leg had been COMPLETELY unprotected for 18 hours now, and we were leaving town that day. Oh, how the momma bear comes out. I filled her in on the crucial points of our situation and asked her to call me back as soon as they had an appointment.

Well, whaddya know, but just ten minutes later she called back and said that we had an appointment at 1:00. Thank you very much. :)

Now 24 hours after the breaking had occured, we get to see only the best pediatric orthopedic surgeon in the world, Dr. Mayfield. He and his staff are like NORMAL people. Caring, understanding, practical, all those things that most doctors office people usually are not! Yes, of course the leg was broken. We'll get a full-leg cast on it right away. We'll take it off in 3 weeks to re-x-ray it and probably get a short cast put on for another 2-3 weeks.

Kalleigh chose pink for her cast, of course, and while it was still sticky, we picked up the boys from the Deans and drove to AR!

My poor family had to deal with me tense and on edge and just worn out. Kalleigh was still in pain most of the weekend and so very frustrated that she couldn't run and play with her cousins as much as she wanted to. I was frustrated that my hands were tied up either carrying her or pushing her around in the stroller! After this whole mess, the reunion seemed to fall to the back burner.

BUT ...

I'm so glad we went ahead and drove on to AR! It was sooooo good to see so much family.

 And this is, what, 1/2 of just the Dean Curtis family? And we just keep getting pregnant. Thanks, Deborah for the pic. :)

One of the best things about having a cast at a family reunion is that everyone gets to sign the cast!

Oh! Mamaw got her cookbook published! It's called "Recipes for Body and Soul," and you can order it on Amazon right HERE! I think I'm going to get rid of all other cookbooks. What's the point? It's not like I'm going to use them anymore now that I have my very own signed copy of Mamaw's book. Everything that people repeatedly ask me to make here in Tyler is in that book. You just need one.

My favorite tradition: singing together.

Blessed Assurance--oh, what a foretaste of glory divine! Indeed!

It took Kalleigh a week to start walking on her cast. Dr. Mayfield said that whenever she was okay with putting weight on it, that it was safe. Truly amazing.

She now walks, runs and even jumps with that silly cast on. Poor baby! It will be great when she gets a shorter cast so that she can walk more easily on it.

A huge THANK YOU to the anonymous donor who felt led to help us financially during this minor crisis. We have a massive deductible that we probably will not reach, and I don't know if these people knew that or not, but obviously God was a huge part of that. Whomever you are, we did receive it and are so very grateful. Praise God for providing!