Saturday, September 30, 2006

Happy Birthday Sutton

You will always hold a special place in my heart because of what you did for me, turning me from a young woman into a mother, a title I so cherish.

You are the oldest of a growing brood, the perpetual guinea pig. We try everything on you first; what's allowed at a certain age, what's not, as we try to do what we think is right, but are never quite sure.

You are making growing up behind you a true challenge for your siblings. As you slowly make your way into the world, you leave big shoes to fill (and that is no reference to your size 11's!) Your sisters strive to do as well and to succeed as often. Your brothers look forward to their time with you, wrestling, dancing and singing songs.

Parenting you is easy, the thought of letting go is difficult. We have already begun to miss you as you inch into the outside world without us. We look forward to watching you make the important choices regarding your future and can't wait for you to blossom there as well.

Know that you are loved and cherished. Your kind heart and the love and respect you show for others will propel you through life; and while there will be bumps in the road, your faith and you family will always be there for you.

Happy 17th Birthday Sutton Button!

Friday, September 29, 2006

You know you're a stud when...

Your Spider Man sunglasses cover your ears, your cup-holder contains Gatorade, and your "kitty-tat" is seat-belted safely in the passenger seat.

Watch out girls!

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Mr. Literal

Sutton was lamenting her team's performance the other night. Hayden and I were listening intently as she described how the girls on the court "just lost their heads."

Hayden gasped, grabbed his neck and screamed, "You mean their heads came all the way off?! That makes me sad!"

I guess it's time to explain figures of speech.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Tough crowd

Last night at dinner, Reagan said something she thought was very funny. I, of course, laughed, partly because it's my job and partly because I don't like to see her feelings hurt; but she couldn't even elicit a sympathy snort from the rest of the family.

She lamented, "I'm just not funny and I don't know why."

I replied, "Well, maybe you're trying too hard. Why don't you attempt to do a little more listening and a little less talking. I'll bet you could pick up some pointers just by watching and listening to others."

"Maybe so," she sighed.

The meal continued, as did the giggles generated from several other family members. Reagan later decided to make another attempt and, unfortunately, even I wasn't able to force a snicker.

After quite the pregnant pause, Keaton chimed in, as usual, with her dry, quick witt, "Reagan, again, not funny."

I'm not sure if it was the comment from Keaton or the expression she got from Reagan, but it was enough to send the room into uncontrollable guffaws that have reverberated into today.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Jimmy's blog contribution

Dear Lord,
Please no more "Here's a Ball for Baby" song.

"Listen and watch children....This is how Dolly Parton caught her boobs on fire!"

Mini rant

Okay, so the latest thing I have to do with this pregnancy, that I didn't have to do with the other pregnancies, is take a fish oil supplement; it's the new "in" thing my doctor assures me.

So, I do what I am told, even though I don't "do" fish. Jimmy assures me that the fish oil in the tablets is not real fish oil, rather a synthetic form of fish oil.

I want to know then, why do I burp tuna all day?!?!

Talk about nasty.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Back to work

I went back to work today. No, not something as physically tiring as the poor woman in the picture. I am a consultant at a local high school; consultant being a fancy word for substitute counselor.

When I was getting dressed this morning, Keaton asked me to come down to her eye level, put her arm around me and whispered, "Mom, you don't have to do this."

It was a great day and it was nice to join the land of the living once again. I even got to go to a real restaurant, one without disposable cups and a playground equipment in the dining room. And for the first time, in I can't count how many years, there was no high chair at my table. I was even able to resist the urge to cut someone's food.

They may just let me come back tomorrow!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Happiness is...

...getting to celebrate a birthday by going to a really cool party that Mom had to neither plan for, nor clean up after.

Happy Birthday Zach!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Oh really?

Hayden has had a time coming to grips with the ultrasound photo and video. Jimmy decided to show him in a book the way all babies look at 7 weeks, so Hayden might understand that what he was seeing in our pictures is not abnormal.

Hayden looked at the images Jimmy provided, much like the one above, and studied them quietly. Jimmy commented that Hayden, himself, actually looked just like that when he was in Mommy's tummy.

Hayden said, "Oh yes, I remember that. I also remember I didn't like all that celery stuff all around me."

The kid's got some memory.

Brotherly love

This morning was rainy and dreary and all the boys wanted to do was go outside. We tried several indoor activities, snacks, videos, but they were both very grumpy and decided to pick on each other.

The noise level continued to rise and all efforts to calm them failed, so finally Jimmy said in a sing-songy voice, "Okay, who wants the first spanking?"

"Bubba do!," was Landon's immediate reply.

So fast was Landon's response that Hayden looked shocked by his little brother's quickness, thankful that Mom and Dad were too busy laughing to actually follow through with any sort of discipline.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Is that a baby?

Every parent knows that their tiny baby embryo at 7 weeks 5 days is without a doubt the most beautiful tiny baby embryo God has ever created. Little makes you more proud than to stare at those ultrasound pictures and watch the ultrasound video over and over again. You marvel at the miniature miracle you created and dream of the day you will hold him or her in your arms.

Siblings, however, have a very different reaction to the pictures of their "baby." Landon just stared during the ultrasound, not sure whether to laugh or cry at the little creature on the screen who makes very strange "" sounds. It was a little freaky for him. I'm somewhat concerned about nightmares, actually.

Hayden looked at the ultrasound picture, looked at me, looked at the picture, looked at me, and said nervously, "That's the baby in Auntie Gina's tummy, right?"

"No, that's our baby," I said proudly.

"Oh, that's our baby?" sounding very disappointed. Staring at the picture for a few moments more he asked, "Are you sure that's a baby?"

Keaton, after viewing the video for a few minutes ran to the bottom of the stairs and yelled, "Sutton, Reagan, come see our otter!"

Sutton and Reagan, of course, said the baby was cute and sweet, yet they unsuccessfully disguised their transparent facial expressions that screamed, "Our baby looks really...odd." I sense their high hopes for future improvement.

Making Amends

In an obvious attempt to smooth any ruffled Mommy-feathers from Wednesday, Hayden said loudly, so everyone could hear, "Thank you Mommy! That was the most delicious breakfast I have ever had!"

His wife will thank me someday.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Tinman

Today the children all knew that I had an appointment to get an ultrasound. We answered all the questions about what would happen at my appointment and why it was important to get the ultrasound. Everyone understood that this was an appointment that would involve no pain for me and could set our collective minds at ease upon hearing the baby's heartbeat.

While Jimmy and I were driving Keaton and Hayden to school, Keaton (shown with Sutton at left) inquired, "Hey Mom, today is the day when you go to the doctor to find out if you have a heart, right?"

Keaton will be happy to know that not only did the doctor find a strong heartbeat for the baby, he did confirm that I do indeed have a heart that is not only present, but is beating quite vigorously.

She makes me laugh.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Chopped liver

"Thanks Daddy! This is the best-est breakfast ever!" (Hayden says in his most irritating Timmy-from-the-Lassie-show voice.)

I peer from around the corner where I've been ironing everyone's school clothes. Appalled at this unnecessary praise of his father, his hero in baggy sleep pants who has just awakened in time to watch everyone else eat; I proclaim, "Hayden, who made your breakfast?"

Hayden: "Umm, you did Mom."

Mom: "And who got up with you while everyone else was still sleeping, let you pick chocolate chip waffles for breakfast, and crack open the egg all by yourself?..."

Hayden: (Unable to speak, wondering what Mom's problem is, yet learning at the ripe old age of five that in times like this, maybe he should just let her talk it out.)

Mom: "...Who let you strategically place each chocolate chip while she waited patiently and let you cut your own waffle?"

Hayden: (A crowbar could not pry a response out of him by this point.)

Mom: "Who just ironed your clothes, Keaton's clothes, and Landon's clothes for the day and let you tell me fifteen stories and sing me twelve songs; all of which I assured you were the greatest stories and songs I had ever heard?"

Hayden: (Sheepishly testing the waters) "Well, Daddy just made my other waffle and got me chocolate milk."

Mom: "Pffffftttt"

Jimmy: "Are we needing a little validation this morning, baby?"

Mom: (frankly feeling a little foolish by this point.) "Maybe."

And maybe these pregnancy hormones are raging and a little validation would have been nice...even if it was just breakfast and he is just a five year old with chocolate on his face.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Some days...

...are just plain rough when you're two. You wake up and you just have to be mad at someone. (That's a butterfly net on his head, by the way.)

So you yell at your brother, "Stop wookin' at me!" And when your sister Keaton greats you, you scream, "Stop talkin' to me!" And when you sister Sutton tries to kiss you, you scream, "Stop gettin' all my sugars!" And when your sister Reagan tells you good bye, you bellow, "Weeve me alone!"

It's a bad morning; watch out world.

But then Daddy leaves and the only person left to torture is Mommy. So she tries to make things better by taking you to the "slurpee store." (She's easy.)

You want to go and you can't let her know that, so you cover your eyes for the picture:

You're good at the store because you know she won't bring you back if you're bad. (She may be easy, but she's not stupid.)

When you get home, you decide to drive your car; but you can't look like you're having too much fun so you frown and pout:

Eventually, you succumb to the pure joy of the wind blowing through your hair (or at least hitting your helmet) and you let loose on the driveway:

Daddy gets home and it's time for a game of hoops, but you won't take off your helmet for fear he might put up the car. Basketball is just a momentary diversion:

After scoring the necessary number of points, you decide to go back to the car and the darn phone rings...can this day be any more irritating?!

Finally, after playing with Mom and Dad a good long time, and having their undivided attention, they take you to lunch. (This bad mood thing is really working for you!) You eat a huge bowl of pasta and are civil the whole meal. (Well, they did spring for lunch.)

Once you get back in the car to go home, you get to do what you've needed to do all morning:

Now you have officially proven what you've suspected all along...your parents are definitely slow learners.

Monday, September 18, 2006

The entertainer

If there's a piano, he will play it. If there's a microphone, he will reenact the entire Barney song...complete with accurate facial expressions and body movements.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Our little visitor

We had guests today. My sister, Gina, her husband, David, and my niece, Dayden ran by for a few minutes. No one was more excited than Landon who treats Dayden as his own personal baby doll. He kept saying, "Baby Dayden, you so cute!"

He even offered her some Cheez-It's snack crackers, not understanding why she didn't want any. More humorous, though, was when Gina was trying to nurse the baby under a blanket. Landon walked right up, lifted the blanket and asked boldly, "What doin' Baby Dayden?"

I guess he doesn't realize that he was doing the same thing up until about six months ago. I'm sure he won't want to be reminded of that...ever.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Patient politician

Reagan, here today at her volleyball match, has not had the best of luck in entering student government. She made her first attempt at politics in the third grade when she began attending a new school and wanted to run for student council. No one knew her at this school and the loss was quite devastating to our up-in-coming baby kisser.

She continued to try the next year in fourth grade and then again in fifth grade, but to no avail. She wasn't sure if it was a poorly run campaign, her policy ideas, or her views on domestic and foreign issues (wink, wink); nothing seemed to work and she lost again...and again.

This year she came to me, eager to try one more time to infiltrate the school government elite. I hesitantly agreed, bought the poster board, helped with a slogan, and sneaked in a cautionary pep talk of sorts.

Mom: "Reagan, you know this is a new school." (She's moved to middle school this year.)

Reagan: "Yes, I know."

Mom: "You know that your elementary school only sends a hand full of students to this school while two other elementary schools send their whole fifth grade population, right?"

Reagan: "Yes, I know."

Mom: "So people who run that came from those other two schools will have a whole lot more people to vote for them because more people know them, right?"

Reagan: "Yes, I know."

Mom: "Okay, I just don't want you to be really disappointed if, say, you don't get the completely unlikely even that such a thing would happen since I know you could win."

Reagan: "Mom, it'll be okay."

Mom: "I just don't want you to get hurt."

Reagan: (consoling me) "Listen Mom, if I can handle losing three years in a row, I can handle losing this year too."

And she did lose. I was sad the whole afternoon; she was sad for about a minute and was ready to move on to her next project. Maybe she is cut out for politics, as I'm obviously too weak.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Birthday wishes

Today some special people in my life share a birthday. My friend Jeni (shown at left with Reagan, Keaton and Hayden) still lives in Georgia and I miss her terribly. We taught together at the same high school and our children played together the years I lived there. She is one of those friends that I can call day or night and whose call I would take without hesitation at any hour. She toughened me up when I needed it and kept me going when I didn't think I could. My children would much rather be with "Miss Jeni," as the adventures with her are frequent and varied and the fun is never-ending.

Another VIP in my life is my youngest sister, Krista (far right). Next to Krista is my then-pregnant sister, Gina, followed by Tameka (whom we call our black sister), and me (far left).

I was nine years old when Krista was born and I cried like a baby when she wasn't a boy. Little did I know how much fun she would be, even to this day. She is the comic relief at every gathering and one that never lets the conversation die. My Reagan is just like Krista, full of personality, comments and questions; a continuous breath of fresh air.

Happy birthday girls! I love you both.

Darn bug

We are at a full week of whatever this illness is. It has officially made the rounds, currently settling now with Jimmy and Landon; the two consistently present at all of the bathroom runs (no pun intended) over the week.

Yesterday was rather rough for the two of them. We went to lunch but I was the only one who ate (I have successfully learned to eat past my nausea).

I did notice that our medicine went from a few bottles on the counter to an overflowing basket full...see above. Our medicinal stash grew exponentially once Daddy started feeling bad. What's that they say about grown men getting sick?

However, today was a very good day in the market and he had a closing on a house in which he was both the realtor and the mortgage company. Nothing like making a little money to cure all that ails him.

Thank goodness.

Thursday, September 14, 2006


My friend Janet was sweet enough to send me some pictures of Sutton from Tuesday night. It was a heart-breaker match with our girls losing by two points in game five. I can almost guarantee, based on Sutton's reaction after the match, that our girls will not be losing to this team again.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Captain Curious

Yesterday continued as it began. Sutton didn't get sick, Reagan made it all day at school, Keaton stayed home feeling icky, Hayden milked his funny tummy for all it was worth, and Landon held vigil just waiting for the next incident.

Landon did get "lucky" when Hayden's hurtin' stomach went south and he was forced to run to the potty with an unexpected case of diarrhea. Jimmy was johnny-on-the-spot, immediately by Hayden's backside making sure all nether-regions were spic and span, something you can't always trust a five year old to do. Sensing another presence, Jimmy discovered Landon's head right in the needed-to-be-spruced-up-area, quick with his, "What doin' Daddy?" inquisition.

The kid doesn't miss a thing.

He did, however, lose some of his enthusiasm when his own tummy revolted, forcing our once eager little spectator to retreat into "hold me" status for the rest of the afternoon.

Hopefully, all our family members are on the mend and those not afflicted as of yet will squeak by unscathed. I'm still trying to decide, though, is this nausea actually morning sickness or am I being sucked into the dregs of the infirmed; either way...yuk.

I do know that I have recently purchased some little boy binoculars and with the events of the past few days coupled with the uncertainty of our future health, I think I will hide them for a while longer, lest Landon decide to take them to his next bizarre "viewing." There is no telling what part of the body he might decide to zoom in on next.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Hayden, after supposedly recovering from his 24 hour bug, graciously allowed others in our family the experience of repetitive vomiting for no apparent reason.

Not to be left out, Keaton began last night after dinner and Reagan soon followed; each alternating caring for the other when it wasn't her "turn." While sad (and really quite gross), it was so nice to have them working together on something rather than fussing about nothing, as is their usual pattern. I have to look for progress in all areas of our lives, even puke-influenced ones.

Hayden got up this morning ready to head back to school, only to upchuck right on the carpet in the hall. I can't tell you how sorry I am that I made goulash for dinner last night. Even Jimmy commented that if someone had told him years ago, during his carefree bachelor days, that he'd be picking tomatoes out of the carpet someday, he wouldn't have believed them.

Never one to skip a good barfing exhibition, Landon raced from bathroom to bathroom, hoping not to miss a single second, questioning every move and unfamiliar noise with his usual energetic inquisitiveness. This morning's Hayden vomit-viewing must have proven too much even for Landon, as he immediately began to gag and Jimmy raced him to the kitchen sink. So far so good, but watching all of that wretching had to get to the little guy eventually.

Needless to say, Keaton and Hayden are home for the day. Jimmy took Reagan to school as she refused to miss a single day, so scared is she of the make-up work. And Sutton attempted to ignored us all as she tried to sneak out of the house, unseen and without breathing our air.

The next 24 hours should be quite interesting with many questions yet to be answered. Will Reagan make it all day at school? Will Sutton survive unscathed and dodge the inevitable? Will Landon make it to the next "viewing" in time to see it all?

Stay tuned!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Perfect sense

Hayden: "Look Keaton, I wrote my name perfect."

Keaton: "That's not perfect Hayden."

Hayden: "Yes, it is perfect."

Keaton: "No, it is not perfect. Only God is perfect."

Hayden: (thinking of a rebuttal) "Well, God told me to write my name perfect and I did, so it is perfect."

Keaton: (thinking of her own rebuttal) "Okay, well, ummm...nevermind...let's try to draw a duck. See mine."

Hayden: "Okay, but I will make my duck perfect."

Keaton: "Fine Hayden, yours can be perfect."

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Turtle hunters

Reagan went to a youth group activity and Sutton went to a football game; so the rest of us went turtle hunting. We got lucky and Dad was able to catch two turtles and two fish.

Keaton took the camera and caught something of her own...Dad's best side. (She knew better than to come near MY rear end with that camera!)