Monday, May 31, 2010

Ode to Zella's Virus

Virus Virus, Go Away!
You overstayed your welcome, we want to play.
It is summer vacation- time to have fun
Playing, laughing, swimming in the sun.

My baby girl is missing it all
Listless with fever, weak from the fight
Go away, go away into the night!

Take with you your vomit, fever, sadness.
Leave us behind to enjoy summer madness.

The End

Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Grandgirls Weekend... and Zander too

For the past three days my Mom and Dad in Law have hosted 10 kiddos age 4-14 at their house for a whirlwind of fun. This event was officially titled "The Grandgirl Weekend". My hubby's aunt Joyce came with four beautiful girls from Arkansas and Tennessee, add in my four nieces from Texas and my two kiddos and you have a whole lot of fun. Here is a review of the events...
Crafting: We made tote bags from fun fabrics and bling.

Sweet and Sassy: All the girls got mani-pedi's and then took to the catwalk for some Taylor Swift Karaoke. (Zander was the official photographer for this event and got a webkin souvenir.)

We swam- no pics, lifeguarding 10 kids is no joke! Then rounded out the day with dinner, playing, and movies.

Day 2-
Grooming: Hair and makeup time is serious business with all these beauties in the house.

Inspirations Tea Room: We picked up Meme for a fancy lunch. How special for her to have 2 daughters, 1 granddaughter, and 9 great-grands all together for lunch. The kids even toasted her for being such a wonderful Meme.

The Show, take 2... These kiddos love to put on a show and sing for an audience. After the tea room they headed back to Meme's retirement home to sing for her. I missed the performance to make my kids rest, but will post a video later.
(And HERE it is:))

More swimming, eating, playing, s'mores, and fun. The kids have had such a fun time being together. My children keep asking when they have to come home. I think they are secretly hoping to get to spend the whole summer camped out with their cousins in Edmond! Thanks Geep and Gege for hosting this fantastic weekend, and to Aunt Joyce for bringing Emily and the Reed girls. What fun!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Cousin Camp

This week my sister in law and her kiddos are in town, staying at Geep and Gege's house in Edmond. So- we are having tons and tons of cousin fun! I totally love that both of Lance's sisters live close enough for our kids to have close relationships with one another. The older girls are so sweet with both my kiddos, and Zander and his cousin Abigail are just three months apart and great friends. Holden and Jeremy are also getting old enough to interact with the big kids. What a blessing!

Monday and Tuesday we had fun playing, swimming, tatooing, and hanging out. Here are some pics of the fun:

Tonight Lance's aunt Joyce came to town with four more sweet girls to join the fun. Tomorrow all 9 girls are headed to get mani pedis. Friday will be a trip to the tea room for lunch. What fun! More pictures of the girlie madness to come.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Summer Begins

We made it through the year, got another great report card, said goodbye to our friends, and it is time to shift gears to start summer vacation. The Leffel and Gardner clans headed over to Cuppies and Joe for some cupcakes and yummy drinks to celebrate a school year well done. Then, on home to unplug and start some summer fun. Kiddos threw on swimsuits for a water fight, got out the sidewalk chalk, and spent three or four hours just playing so sweetly together in the backyard.... Here is to many more nights like tonight!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The End is Here!

I simply can't believe that this is the last night of the school year! My sweet boy is officially done with Kindergarten, and my big girl will be in preK at Wilson next year! On the Eve of Summer I am a little nostalgic for the year gone by, and a little apprehensive for the summer itself.
I hate to say this, but I have gotten spoiled. I am used to having a bit of "Me" time during the week and I know it will be in short supply this summer. The upside? Time spent hanging out and laying low with my kiddos. As they have gotten older it has gotten easier to just relax and enjoy our down time. So, starting next week- don't call me before 8:00... I hope I will still be sleeping:) (Those of you who know my kids know this is serious wishful thinking!!!)
Here are a few pics of the last bit of school year fun. Both kiddos had field trips to the park today and I got to be there for a little of Zella's and all of Zander's. What sweet groups of kiddos and great teachers!

Zella Grace and the First Pres. Crew:

Zander's Kindergarten Picnic:

Monday, May 17, 2010

The Getaway

Sometimes we all need a Getaway, and this weekend I got a great one! I met up with six college girlfriends in Santa Fe for some fun and relaxing. It was so good to get out of town.

I loved the drive (at least the first 6 hours, the last 2... I was done!).

I loved the company.

I loved the hike.

I REALLY loved the spa.

I always love the food and drinks.

And I definitely love New Mexico.

I had a very hard time on the way home not taking the turnoff to head up to Casa de Maria, my friend Amy's cabin. It was hard to be so close and not be headed there! I am hoping we will make our annual trek if we can coordinate our family schedules and she can put up with us yet again!

All in all such a great weekend. I love that I can still get together with these girls after 12 or more years and pick up right where we left off. I am already looking forward to the next trip. However, I came back to reality with a bang this morning- a tummy sick Zella Grace. Oh well, it only makes me appreciate my getaway that much more!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Storm Protocol

If you live in Oklahoma you better have one! Growing up in central Illinois we had tornadoes fairly frequently. They never seemed too scary to me because we had our basement. It was really just an excuse to go down there and play. The sirens went off, we went down and had all the stuff to occupy two kids ready and waiting. The biggest difference between those good old days and now? Super crazy weather forecasting!

When Hubby and I first moved back to Oklahoma I got a taste of the seriousness with which the weather here is forecast. It has only gotten worse with Doppler HD/ Storm Track1000/ Whatever else they use to basically show storms down to pinpoint locations. I know this technology and good weatherman forecasting can literally mean a difference between life and death for Oklahomans. I really do appreciate it on days like yesterday where tornadoes are popping up left and right. Hearing the weatherman call an intersection close to home gives you the time to get safe in a hurry.

But... I also know that in the rush to be the first/best/most accurate our local stations go overboard in a bad way on a lot of days when we are just having plain old thunder and lightning. It can desensitize you. There is something to be said about the good old days when they blew the siren and you ran to the safe spot- no turning on the TV and waiting to see where it is before you respond.

At our old house I spent many scary moments with both kids and the dog in the closet thinking... "We should REALLY put in one of those garage shelters". Only to forget about it the next day. After watching the news coverage of that family pulled out of their shelter after the garage collapsed on top of it? Man- if that is not a wakeup call for all the Oklahomans who don't have a shelter I don't know what is. In our new house we are blessed to have something most houses in Oklahoma don't- a basement. I love this room for lots of reasons, but yesterday I loved it for the most important reason.

When I read the weather report yesterday morning I decided I better sweep and clean up our basement. Glad I did- the kids spent about an hour down there snuggled in sleeping bags watching Madagascar on the travel DVD player last night. Some days you can just feel it in the air, and yesterday was one of those. I am grateful to be back in a house with a basement- it is a lot less scary for my kiddos than cramming into a closet or a fraidy hole in the garage. So- if the shiznit ever goes down at my house in OKC, look for us below ground- we will be riding it out in the basement. What is your protocol?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Garden Check-In

One of my favorite daily rituals is a walk through my garden. I usually go once in the morning and again in the afternoon- generally when I am feeding the fish. This is such a relaxing time for me. I love to just take in all the changes. Mother Nature just keeps working away whether we pay attention or not. So, it is amazing to me how much things can change in a very short time.

Here are some of the best looking flowers:

I am getting very excited by the changes in the vegetable patch. I am going to be eating tomatoes off the vine in no time!

The zucchini is flowering:

Peppers too:

Grow grow grow little veggies! I can't wait to eat you!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

A Night To Remember

No, not the prom!

Last night we got to celebrate one of my favorite couples, Lance and Stephanie Schmidt. These two are such fun to be around and have meant so much to my hubby and I over the past 6 or so years. This weekend marks the event of a lifetime for them. They are right now on a plane to Ethiopia to pick up their son Solomon. I almost tear up just typing that! After celebrating so many milestones for so many others it was finally time to throw them a Baby Shower. All of us involved wanted to make it a night to remember and a great party. I think it worked out perfectly! Here are some shots of the fun:

The parents to be in the middle:)

And Finally... The LOOT!