Monday, December 12, 2016


I try to go jogging a few days a week. I have been mixing that up lately with some other exercise at home, but running is great because it's outside and I can listen to podcasts, which I love to do. Leah is usually up for it, and she loves to take some juice and Pirate's Booty. The little statue in the background is lovingly referred to as "the girl I love," and Leah loves to go visit her when we are out.

When she sees her up ahead she'll say, "There's the girl I love!"

I suggested that for Jansen's birthday he take a couple friends and go to Thin Air and then out to dinner. Nate took them, and I think they all had a great evening.

This is Dude. After much thought, prayer, and research we decided to try getting a dog. I say try because I still had reservations and we had 72 hours to see if he was a right fit for us. We loved him, and he was a very good dog, but having him triggered something in me and I just couldn't handle it right now with the deployment coming up. I think it just put me over the edge to have one more body and one thing to love, feed, and clean up after. It's hard for me to look at these pictures because I really wanted it to work out and he had already stolen our hearts. The timing just wasn't right though. We took him back to his foster mom on Labor Day and I cried and cried. It was very hard on the kids, but I will say they recovered pretty quickly. It sounds dramatic, but it was an incredibly hard weekend and I haven't cried that much in a long time. 

The plan has been for the kids to only have birthday parties every other year, but somehow Natalie snuck another one in. She had a dog themed birthday party this year.

Everyone made their own pizzas, which turned out to be messier than I had anticipated. 

I think it has been a few years in a row now that Jansen has requested this brownie trifle for his birthday. This was the year of the Rubik's cubes, and he got many different ones for his birthday.

Leah was so proud of this tower she built. 

It was so nice to have Nate here for everyone's birthdays. I think Jansen used some of his own money to buy this game called Blokus. They played it many nights in a row.

Emmy had a combined birthday party with her bestie Story. Story's mom had all these adorable pillowcases made for the guests to take home.

It was a spa night of sorts, and all the girls wore their pajamas.

We used our free trip to SeaWorld before Nate left. 

I can always count on Nate to load on the peanut butter.

This picture is a little funny. Poor Natalie is having a very hard time in the background. I think she felt like Emmy received better presents than she did for her birthday.

Emmy has been going through a phase where she always wants her hair in a bun on top of her head. I can't say I blame her.

I had a fantastic girls weekend with these two in September. Michelle flew into Houston where Becca lives, and then I drove to Waco and we met up there. We visited Magnolia Market at the Silos of course.

Waco has its fair share of ghetto, and we honored that by hitting up the local Dollar Tree. We all bought an embarrassing amount of junk, but we had so much fun. 

We did more shopping and eating in Waco and then drove to Arlington for the Time Out for Women event.

I had so much fun. One night ended in my favorite type of uncontrollable laughter. I love talking fashion, parenting, marriage, kids, religion, food, anything and everything with these two.

I brought Emmy In n Out and had lunch with her on her birthday.

This little princess discovered she can use a kickboard as a nice tray to eat off of while she takes a bath.

I was so happy when she requested a donut cake for her birthday. That's easy!

Nate and I went on a date to the King William District and took a beautiful stroll along the river.

Fall always means some soccer.

And church always means some shenanigans.

We had a day with Nate before he left that we spent tying up some loose ends on base and then going to the DoSeum.

I think Natalie will always remember her late night runs to Church's Chicken with dad. He has the special touch with her most of the time.