Sunday, July 31, 2011

One For The Star Wars Fans

I found this in my freezer last week.

When I asked the kids about it I was told in a very matter-of-fact tone that they were re-enacting the scene in Star Wars where Han Solo is frozen in carbonite.


Friday, July 29, 2011

Train Town Break Down

We made our way back home from Texas in a marathon two day trip. One small town we had noticed on our way to Texas (can't remember the name of it, but I'm sure Allen can tell me. I think it was near the border of Colorado?) was some sort of historical train stop - so, with train lovers in our family, we decided to make it a quick pit-stop on our way back.

At this point in the trip, we had already driven for one day straight, stopped at a hotel overnight, done some more marathon driving (stopping only for gas) and were still not very close to home. You know the drill - fussy baby wants out of his carseat, cries of how much longer? and he's breathing my air! and can I eat something? and I'm bored! Let's just say this - patience was not my strong suit.

I just wanted a dang picture of my smiling family. NORMAL SMILES. Was that too much to ask?

As I continued to snap photos of my family I became increasingly frustrated that they would not JUST SMILE NORMAL ALREADY!

I believe I may have even told one of my children *cough* ElemenoB *cough* that someday I hoped she would look back on all the pictures I have of her over the last two years or so and wish she had not made THOSE RIDICULOUS FACES!!

They seemed to feed on my frustration.

And then... FINALLY! they realized that I was not kidding. I was annoyed. So I got a good shot! No goofy faces.

And then I looked closer as I scrolled through my pictures and noticed that Cowgirl was plugging her nose in my one 'normal shot'.

That was it. The last straw.

I could feel the emotion rising as my mouth started to twitch. NO! I thought to myself. For some reason, when I am in an awkward or uncomfortable situation where I want to cry or scream, my emotions play tricks on me. I don't get why I do this, but it happens every time.

So I did what I had to do.

I turned around and covered my mouth as the laughter escaped me, hoping that none of them would see or hear it. (They totally heard it. I could see it in their smug faces as we all climbed back into our van for the remainder of our long drive home.)

But you know what's really funny? As I was creating this post and looking at these snapshots, I was totally laughing. These pictures are a perfect portrayal of my crazy family. I think it's even funnier that I was so mad at them for not being NORMAL. When have I ever been normal?


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Texas Tea Party

The day that our families went to the Astros game one of my nieces had a church activity where a tea party was planned. She really wanted to go but some of us would have to stay behind. I suggested that we have a tea party at their house instead and everyone was happy with that - even the older girls who we let create and prepare the food.

While the princesses went to find proper attire for such an occasion (including clothes for all of the little princes) the girls prepared this feast:

When they were called down for their tea party each princess was escorted down by a young prince.

Once they were seated the older girls served each guest their finger foods...

...which all proper royalty knew to eat with their pinkies up.

Okay, some ate with their pinkies down. But whatever. They were sure cute doing it.

And, honestly, what tea party is complete without chocolate milk and bendy straws?

And they all lived happily ever after.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Elk Ranch

Cutest little cowpokes you ever did see!

One of my favorite places to spend some time when we visit Texas is Elk Ranch. This is some property owned by Allen's brother, Troy, and his family. It is like a little piece of heaven on earth because there is something for everyone. If you want to sit back and watch a movie or read a book, you can hang out in the ranch house. If you want to get outside and play, there is ziplining, fishing, canoeing, and plenty of exploring to be done.

Chow time!

Where the ranch gets its name - this impressive herd of elk roam the grounds.

Uncle Troy and Baby X

One of the cousins shows them how the zipline is done

Ready for a canoe ride

Coolister and Little O

Ziplining over the pond

Bighorn sheep

Allen and Coolister

All-a-boy loved the zipline

These cuties loved going for rides on the Polaris

Allen decided to cool off with All-a-Boy

Coolister became the non-official guy in charge of canoe rides

Did I mention that All-a-Boy loved the zipline?

Friday, July 8, 2011

Stewart Beach

One of the days on our Texas trip we drove to Galveston for a fun day at the beach. The cool thing about this beach is that you can walk out into the water forever and still touch the bottom. Another major difference between the ocean in Texas and the one I'm used to in southern California is that the water is warm here so you can just walk right in without any hesitation (or goosebumps).

I didn't think to pull out my camera until we had already been there for quite awhile. I mention this in case you think I have some sort of bias against my older girls. There are no pictures of them because they were too far out in the water or searching for seashells along the shoreline somewhere.

I'll let the pictures tell the rest of the story.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Astros Game

When Allen was a kid he was on a little league team called The Astros and they have been one of his favorite baseball teams ever since.

When we were in the Houston area visiting two of Allen's brothers and their families we all went to an Astros game together. Let me just say that I am not one of those fun moms who likes to take her kids places. I tend to just go crazy counting to ten every 5 minutes to make sure everyone is accounted for when we're in a public place - so I prefer to just stay home where I'm in my element and everyone is confined. I say depriving kids gives them character. Right?

Well, I decided to step out of my comfort zone and join my family out at the ballgame. And you know what? I'm glad I did. If you ignore the repeated trips up and down the stairs to get to the bathroom with the youngest couple of kids in the bunch, it was actually a pretty fun time.

We got to visit and the kids had fun cheering and trying their hardest to be noticed by the camera operators who made people feel famous up on the huge video board. (No luck there, but it was sure fun trying.)

Oh, and I'm pretty sure some of the guys actually watched the game, too.

Go Astros!