Monday, January 31, 2011

Dance Fever

Well . . . my husband acts like I have auditioned our family for Toddlers and Tiaras, but I have to confess that I had a BLAST at Caroline's dance competition. This is a whole new world for us and I had no idea what to expect going into it--I am happy to report it was a fun and exciting and even sweet time. And I am loving the excuse to have some alone time with Caroline. What a gift!!

Caroline and I left Friday afternoon for Fayetteville with our car all shoe polished up in support of Rock City Dance Company. We enjoyed a little Ramona and Beezus on the way up and I must confess I have a small crush on Uncle Hobart, although he is obviously over the moon for Aunt B. Then Caroline cranked up the tunes on her ipod and we sang our hearts out to Lady Gaga and You're a Good Man Charlie Brown and Wicked. Before we knew it, we were there and these two little loves were waiting for us.

Growing up, I was (am) extremely close to my two cousins, Nate and Josh. I didn't have brothers, they didn't have a sister, so we sort of became that to each other. Now we all have kids and it is so fun to see them love each other. Hudson and Hendrix (1 and 4) were absolute dolls and Caroline really enjoyed playing with younger kids who didn't see her as the bossy older sister! It was so much fun to stay with Josh and Liz and get a chance to catch up and just hang out.

Saturday morning came bright and early, though, and we were off to Bentonville High School (which is on SE J street, not NE J street as I typed into the directions . . . 1901 NE J street is a dirt road with a lot of no trespassing signs and barking dogs . . . just a little FYI).

Once we found the high school, we took our bags in, found our team's dressing room and put the finishing touches on Caroline. Then we waited. I felt like I was going to throw up . . . I was so nervous for them! But Caroline and her BFF Maggie were pretty excited . . .

Their group did great! And the dance company was sweeping the awards when we slipped out to head back to Little Rock! It was so much fun to cheer for our girls and the Rock City team!

Now it's back to the daily grind and life without stage make-up . . . at least until Hot Springs in 2 weeks!!!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Bed head and dance competitions

While Sascha was sick and complaining about ear pain, I decided to put a pillow in her bed so she could prop up a little bit if it did hurt. Since then, she has wanted her "piyow" every nap and at bed time. For one thing, it provides a great place to hide . . . 

And, apparently, after a great night's sleep, it adds volume to your hair!

In other Bass family news, Caroline and I are off to Bentonville today . . . we are going to stay with my cousin and his family tonight, and then tomorrow Caroline's dance company will perform in their first competition! We are pretty excited and definitely made up for the event . . . 

As for the other 3 kids that I adore . . . well, I am leaving them in the care of this thug

Have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sick Sassy

Is their anything sweeter and cuter and more pitiful than a sick baby girl sleeping? 

Sascha, or Sassy as we occasionally call her, threw up night before last (of course Josh was out of town) and then proceeded to jump on my bed and laugh for the next 5 hours before taking a short nap and waking up saying, "My eya hers" (My ear hurts.) She never got sick again or ran fever. She had some flushed cheeks last night but no other rashes. When she woke up this morning she was a pitiful mess. She cried in my arms for about 20 minutes before I put her in the bathtub (considered a magical fix in our house).

She has perked up and is eating crackers and coloring and watching Toy Story 3 for about the 5th time in 2 days.

We are crossing our fingers and spraying some Lysol in hopes that she is an isolated case. (And i am hoping even more that she feels up to getting into trouble tomorrow!)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


I will try to be clever and funny and show cute pictures of my kids another day, but today I am burdened. I am sick about the state of marriages in our country. Marriage is hard. That's a big reason why we take vows. Most of the time you don't take a vow for the always easy, only fun stuff. I was at the gym on Saturday watching The Today Show while I ran and wanted to throw up when one of their "experts" told a viewer to go ahead and leave his wife and children because they would all be better off if he was happy. Are you kidding me? Why take a vow if you are going to back out of it because you don't like how it feels for a little while? And, by the way, that is not true. Those kids want their parents together. Even if they are fighting. What scares kids about fighting parents is that they might divorce.

There are 2 precious girls I am praying for and just so sad for because their husbands have decided that they don't love them anymore and are walking away from their marriages. These men are not worried about their kids (who are DEVASTATED) or their wives who are now feeling rejected and lonely and are raising their children alone. They are just selfish, selfish little boys doing what they want to do at that moment.

I know that marriage is hard work. Heaven knows that Josh and I have been through some hard stuff. But the consequences of walking away are even harder. And they don't just affect you. Those in churches are not doing any better at marriage than the unchurched, either, and that is not ok. We should be shining a light, calling others not to give up. If you think you are in a situation that isn't going to work, and I know there are some that are beyond repair, seek GODLY counsel. Seek that counsel earlier than later--think of it as going to the doctor before you need to be rushed to the ER. And, maybe, put some of that critical focus on yourself. I have been so convicted this year of how I am always "aware" of where Josh needs to work on himself and our marriage, but not so worried about my own issues. As God has turned a magnifying glass on me, I have had so much self-work to do that I have run out of time to "help" Josh. Would you believe me if I said we are both happier? It's true.

I saw this video on Kelly's Korner and loved it. I am a big Andrew Peterson fan and the bearded guy playing the guitar is a long time friend of mine named Andy Gullahorn.

Well, I am climbing off my soap box to go fix some dinner for the fam. Thanks for giving me a venue to vent.

Monday, January 24, 2011

A chip off the old blog

oh my. that is painful. at least i am trying to be creative!

Caroline has been super into this blog. She loves looking at it and reading and re-reading the posts. This weekend she and Josh had some conversations that led to her deciding she wanted to start her own blog reviewing restaurants and attractions around here from a kid's perspective. Her hope is that eventually places will invite her to come and either comp her meal or entrance in return for her review OR pay her a little to write about them/advertise their business. Fairly savvy and industrious, I thought, so we spent time over the weekend putting it together and today, I am pleased to introduce to you Caroline's Corner!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Dear Bissell, THANK YOU!!

Today is Josh and my 11th wedding anniversary . . . 11 years. Wow. I'm not sure what the official, appropriate gift is for 11 years, but we were leaning towards iphones.

Are there ever times in your life when you realize that you are getting older? I mean times other than your birthday when you have to add a year to the previous number? I have had several lately. Like the fact that the kids I started babysitting for when they were 1 and 3 have both graduated . . . from college and one is married. Or the little calculation Josh did that indicated I may be closer to 50 than 16. I guess having 4 kids, the oldest almost being 9, might have tipped me off too.

The main floor of our house is almost all hard wood floors . . . which I LOVE . . . except that cleaning them well is a process. (Stay with me, I promise I am getting back to the phones.) First, I swivel sweep, then I swiffer, then I vacuum, THEN I mop. As you can imagine, with 4 kids and a little bit of a life, that is hard to fit in as often as I would like and as often as it needs to be done.

Back around Christmas time, I saw an advertisement for a Bissell cleaner that SWEEPS WHILE IT MOPS WITH STEAM!! I'm sorry, but as the official housecleaner for the Bass family, that is even more exciting than the iphone. If you will refer to the previous paragraph, that simplifies four steps into one. So, I asked Josh if I could have the Steam and Sweep instead of a new phone. Caroline has never been more disappointed in me.

Today, it is with great joy that I tell you that I thoroughly cleaned all the floors upstairs in about 30 minutes. Happy. Happy. Happy. Dork. Dork. Dork.

And with all the time I saved, I managed to work in a spray tan from my dear friend, Mandy Jackson. Followed by date night with Josh to celebrate said 11 years and I would say it has been a pretty darn good day.

Which made me think that if Brian (from Father of the Bride) had waited 11 years to give Annie her blender, she might have kissed him instead of temporarily calling off the wedding. Timing, boys, timing.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Who knew he was a roller skater?

Our little group of buddies went to the roller rink today for a couple of hours and Bo was DETERMINED to skate. He refused to ride a scooter or a bike . . . only the skates would do. He did really well . . . better than I would have at 4 . . . or 34!

Isn't he just the cutest?!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

I am neither a big fat chicken nor a big fat idiot . . . hooray!

Just a little follow up to the MRI post . . . in case anyone was wondering . . . I was so brave and did the MRI without any drugs or crying or screaming or breaking of very expensive equipment. We found out that I did not mess my hip up by running in my shape-up shoes, there is another problem that will take care of itself with time.

I have to admit I was pretty proud of myself. I told one friend my internal soundtrack was blaring Whitney Houston . . . "I'm every woman . . . "

In other news . . . this is going on outside of my window again . . .
And we are just as excited as we were last week and probably will be Sunday when the next round of snow is supposed to hit!! Where are we?! Loving this rare Arkansas weather and betting the next week the high will be 75 with tornadoes because that's how we roll in the Natural State (or Land of Opportunity . . . this is literally up for debate now in our state legislature. Big picture folks.)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Potty training has gone to her head

Looks like I need to do a better job explaining the process to her . . . 
She now has THREE pairs on her head and is running around saying, "I need mo doera on my het!"
(I need more Dora on my head)

Ironically, 3 is also the number of Dora panties she went tinkle in during the first hour of potty training.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Time really does fly

I so need to work on more clever titles . . . oh well.

I was searching through my photo archives for a specific picture which means I was going through them one by one . . . it is safe to say I got sidetracked a few times. Maybe even teared up a couple of times. Finally found the one I was looking for and then went back to looking back at the last 2 1/2 years of our life.

How can my sweet babies be growing up so fast?! I will admit there has been the occasional panic today wondering if I am cherishing them and this time enough?! Do they know how much I adore them?! Why does it feel like Caroline is going to graduate tomorrow?! How is it that Sascha is not still a nursing infant and Bo a sweet pacifier sucking toddler?! When did Tru turn into a boy, boy?!

Mainly, though, there is just sweet joy as I look over our completed family and wonder how I ever lived without them. (I do have vague memories of sleep and spur of the minute movies and far fewer groceries.)

Confession. Some days I want to run away for an extended vacation. Today, as I was changing Bo's underwear because he couldn't be bothered to stop playing to run to the bathroom and trying not to dry heave because it is so gross, I was not reveling in the glories of motherhood. You should also know that our too good to be true babysitter was here today and I got home at the beginning of nap time, so I have had enough "time off" today to appreciate them.

I just know that we are on the verge of new seasons with Caroline and I cannot believe it. I am aware that I am days away from the potty training adventure with Sascha which will usher in our first diaper free era in 9 years. Along with that comes the planning for her "big girl room" and a time not far off when we will also have a house without a crib for the first time ever (we bought our first house when I was about 36 weeks pregnant with Caroline). Bo doesn't nap anymore and Tru is really into Star Wars and Batman and toot noises and video games.

It's going so fast . . . even when it is going soooooooooooooooooo slooooooooooooow.

Here are a few of the pictures that spurred on this hormonal trip down memory lane . . . .

 night before Sascha is born
 September 17, 2008
 look how little the "BIG" sister is!
 Bo . . . not even 2 years old
 our first picture of all 6 of us

 Christmas 2008

 first day of school 2009 (K, 2nd)
 Christmas 2009
 Disney World
 first day of school 2010 (1st, 3rd)

 Granny's house
Christmas 2010

Friday, January 14, 2011

Real Superheroes

Josh and I walked into our room one day to find this . . . 

It was so cute to see Bo dressing up in Daddy's jeans! Before having kids, I can remember seeing kids running around in costumes at Kroger or Target or church and thinking how stinkin' adorable it was. I vowed that if my future kids wanted to wear their cowboy boots everywhere . . . so be it . . . tutu with everything . . . adorable! . . . Superman as my constant companion . . . bring it on! 

So far, they seem pretty content to be themselves when we leave the house. That's a good thing too. Caroline did go through a very short phase when we had to bring her little shopping cart with us to Target and she wore dress up heels. But it was over as soon as it began.

I have discovered, however, that even when they don't dress up, they mimic and they want someone to emulate. Oh, Lord, if it is me, let me be nice that day. I am serious. You can't fool kids . . . especially your own. They are looking for heroes, for examples, for someone to pattern after. So my prayer is that I will imitate the One I hope they will grow to know and be like.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

A little window . . .

Sometimes people ask me what I do all day . . . you know, since I don't work . . . (pause for throat clearing). Maybe one day I will do a day in the life of post--not because I am bitter, I actually do enjoy "not working" and being with my kids full time, but because given the amount of Diet Dr. Pepper that I drink, one day I may not remember myself.

Here is a little window, however, into my day. While this exact scenario does not happen EVERYDAY, it is not an unusual 30 minutes . . . go in to get Sascha up from her nap to find that she has taken off her diaper at some point during the 2 hours and peed EVERYWHERE . . . take off her sheets and throw them in the washing machine . . . load up the car to go pick up Caroline and Tru from the bus stop . . . while at the bus stop Bo does the pee pee dance and asks if he can go in the grass. Since it is 28 degrees, although I was curious about whether or not it would freeze in the air, I suggest that he go in my Chik-Fil-A cup (insert alternate version of Bible verse . . . greater love hath no mom for her child (and a suburban that doesn't smell like pee) than she pour out her DDP with pellet ice). Ahh, the glamorous life I lead . . . oh, and just so you don't worry, I poured the cup out immediately . . . can you imagine much worse than thinking someone left you a little bit of that yummy Chik-Fil-A lemonade, only to find out . . . well, you get the picture. 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I wish . . .

Here is Caroline in her dance competition costume . . . 

Here are the things I wish . . . 

1. I wish she was a little bit cute
2. I wish she had a little bit of confidence
3. I wish that someone could explain to me why 8 and 9 year old girls need to show their bellies while they are dancing (this one I'm kind of serious about) . . . is it just to make us jealous? Because . . . 
4. I wish I had her muscle definition in my stomach (serious about that one too!)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Dashing through the snow . . .

This year, at the risk of jinxing the snow for all of Little Rock, I planned ahead and got extra snow clothes, gloves, and hats. We have had a nice little rotation of outdoor fun, hot chocolate, and more outdoor fun! All four of the kids are loving the snow and our sweet neighbor friend Emily has joined us as well. We've sledded, had snow ball wars, eaten snow, and built an adorable snow man Emily called "Mr. Snowman, ooh, ooh, ooh!! OR FROSTY! WE COULD NAME HIM FROSTY!!" We all ADORE Em. Inside there have been some board games and card game activities and tonight we plan to eat some soup with the Matsons, watch a little college football . . . and as much as it pains me to say it . . . cheer for Auburn because we SECers have to stick together.

Here are some pictures from a wonderfully, fun day. I need a nap . . . dragging Sascha up and down the hill in her box has worn me out!!

 Ready for the fun

 She had more layers than the little brother in The Christmas Story

 Sascha's box . . . trashbag taped to the bottom of it and Tate's leash fastened on front

 Our across the street neighbors had the perfect sledding driveway

 Sweet Emily

 It was all the kids vs Josh in a snowball war

 He was tough to beat even if you retreated into the garage

 Tru jumped until his pants fell down

 Bo had some serious snowball moves

 sigh . . . she's so big!

 even Tate had fun!

 Mr. Snowman

or Frosty . . . take your pick

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Snow Day #1

YAY FOR SNOW!!!!!!!!!! 

It started about 2:30 this afternoon and we went right out

And as of a few minutes ago, it was STILL SNOWING!!!

The kids' school has already cancelled for tomorrow, so we are ready for a day of snowballs and sleds!