Monday, December 20, 2010

Happy Anniversary Mom & Dad!

Today is my Mom and Dad's wedding anniversary!

We honored them by making a memory/photo book for them. Family and friends wrote sweet messages to them. And we dug up old pictures that we (Rob and Blair) scanned in to make a great book.

I love you mom and dad!

Here are a few of my favorite pics!










Friday, December 17, 2010

A new and creative video from my brother's company.

Very relevant. I think that is what the hipsters would say.

And I always thought "hipsters" was just the name of the undergarments I prefer.

Back to the video. . .













Great job as usual Rob and your team!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving Y'all!

Here is a snapshot of our Thanksgiving this year!


That is 53 people. 28 kids. 24 of those kids are 7 and under.

We are a serious group.

Thanks Mom for hosting all of us again. We love to see all of our cousins and their families. Jake and Amy came from Kansas with 3 kids. Andy and Amy came from Georgia with 4 kids--including one 2 1/2 week old baby girl!

On a different note, I actually went out on Black Friday to shop a little. I don't think I have ever done that before! I didn't go at 3 am or anything. But I got a chunk of shopping for Christmas done in a short amount of time.

However, the most interesting part of the morning was at Old Navy. The lady standing next to me in line said she didn't feel well and that she might faint. Well, she did. She fainted and fell backwards and I caught her.

My first thoughts were, "I am so glad I caught her before she hit the cement ground." and "I am so glad that this is a small woman so that I was able to catch her before she hit the cement ground."

Evidently, she is pregnant and hadn't eaten enough before she went shopping. She is fine now. No thanks to any of the teenage employees at Old Navy. They didn't see the urgency in the lady laying on the store floor that I saw. But she is fine now.

Happy Thanksgiving.



Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Sweet Lainey

I just took some pics of the kids the other day. They grow so fast. But I was especially struck by how old Lainey looks now. She is 7 years old now. In second grade.
We have real conversations. She has hard questions. She is growing up.
She loves Hank so much. She loves all babies. She wishes he didn't weigh so much!

But Lainey is still a normal kid with normal moments of whining, fit throwing and selfishness. We had an interesting trip to the mall the other day. I took all 4 kids on a beautiful Sunday afternoon--assuming everyone would be outside. Evidently it was the last day of Partners Card--everyone was at the mall.

And on the short drive to the mall, I think all the kids had some sort of meltdown. Except for the actual baby of the family. He was fine. Lainey's meltdown came when all three boys were out of the van, the baby in the stroller and ready to go in. She sat on the floor of the (newly cleaned) van and said with tears in her eyes, " I want to go home."

I asked her who she was thinking about right then. (right answer--herself) She said, "But mom, I brought paper and colors for all of us! (meaning--she was thinking about others). I affirmed her and thanked her. Paused for a minute. Then asked again. "But who are you thinking about right now?"

She paused with a tear still running down her face and said, "I don't get me!"

So true Lainey. I don't get me either sometimes. Or you for that matter. But I really love you.

Here is little Lainey. She was two years old. It goes too fast!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

I'm No Politician

Evidently, there is a big election today.

Guess how I know that? The Today Show. Matt Lauer said there was a big election. So it must be true.

I need to admit that I am possibly the least politically interested person I know. I am not proud of it. It's just how I feel. But I do vote. I will tomorrow--unless the lines are too long. But I do plan to vote.

I just can't stand all the political fighting.

One side blames the other for the mess our country is in. The other side returns the blame for not being able to get us out of the mess we are in. And back and forth. The mudslinging, the name-calling, the arrogance--I just can't get into it.

And it seems to me that people vote candidates in and out of office--not unlike they handle their shampoo choice. (I know--it sounds deep, doesn't it?)

You know when your hair starts to get limp and lifeless? Unmanageable? Or just plain boring? So you start looking around for a fix. A new product. A new shampoo. It promises root-lifting volume, long lasting shine and improved hair texture. So you switch.

It works! Gee, your hair sure looks terrific!

And then months, maybe even years later, your hair starts to slump back into it's volume-less mess. You start to complain about your once beloved shampoo. And start itching to find something new. Something with more promises. Something different.

It seems that voters think about politicians like shampoo. Ready to switch with any perception of failure. Always looking for a promise of hair success.

I know--your brain is swimming right now in the deep ocean of this political analysis.





Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

It's that time of year again! Time to dress up and get candy for free!

The weather was perfect here. Great to walk through our neighborhood and see all the adorable kids. And the scary kids. And the creepy parents dressed in questionable costumes.

Here are our kiddos. Rhody was Wolverine. Bo was Ironman. Lainey was SuperGirl. Hank was the Incredible Hulk. Or Incredible Hank as we called him!

I love all the different expressions and poses you get in 5 seconds of picture taking with 4 kids!

Here we all are! Yes, that is me in an authentic mu mu. I totally win most comfortable costume award. Kyle was not Elvis or Elton John. Kyle was "It is 5:15 pm and what am I going to wear for Halloween tonight?" He was Paul Lind and I was Jo anne Worley--for those of you old enough to even know what I'm talking about!
Incredible Hank. Or our future place kicker for the Cowboys.
Just cute of Hank.
Our regular Trick or Treating buddies--the Bindra girls! We were all Super Heros!



Taking a break from all the walking and getting candy.
Luckily we ran into our cousins. Best buds: Sam and Rhody
The cutest kitty ever! Clara and Hank
Wolverine Twins: Rhody and Jack plus Bo
It was a great year. When we got home from Trick or Treating, Bo sat on the front porch handing out candy to all our visitors. He loves that kind of stuff. Bo for Mayor!!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Not Back to the Future

So it's been 25 years since the release of Back to the Future.

OMG. Seriously?

I know this because The Today Show told me. As Lainey said recently, the Today Show IS the news.

I loved that movie when it came out. It was so cool. Who didn't want their own time machine in a Delorean?

But I sort of had a flashback when I saw the whole cast on the Today Show. (just a side note: I saw Mary Steenburgen on the show and could not for the life of me remember her in Back to the Future. Then Kyle reminded me she was in the 3rd one. Not the same. Doesn't count)

The movie came out in the summer of 1985. I had just finished the 7th grade. For some reason I remember a lot of details of my life based on that movie release.

Here is a snap shot of my 12 year old (but almost 13) self that went to Northpark I & II to see the movie.

I woke up one morning in the summer of 1985 and could not get out of bed. My knee was so swollen that I literally fell when I tried to get out of bed. I ended up going to the doctor and getting the fluid drained out. (I eventually had surgery at 15 yrs old on that knee--but that's another post).

But I had to wear a leg brace that was from hip to ankle. And use crutches.

And then like any normal child of the '80s, I got a perm. I went to the J. Michaels Salon on Skillman and sat there for hours as they rolled my super thick hair into tiny plastic rollers. Then they covered it with ammonia and other stinky stuff. I did this the day before we went to see the movie. Remember you can't wash your hair for a couple of days after getting a perm?

So I tried to help with day 2 of the perm by using hot rollers. Not a great idea.

Yeah. So I went to see Back to the Future with huge, bushy, stinky hair--and braces--and wearing a large, white, Velcro leg brace. Using crutches.

I was praying I wouldn't see anyone I knew. Especially Mike Edwards.

I don't remember seeing anyone. But I do remember loving the movie.

Long live Marty McFly.


Friday, October 22, 2010

If I Can Make it There, I'll Make it Anywhere.

Well, happy anniversary to us. (our 10 year anniversary was in August--but who wants to go anywhere in August? Just too darn hot)

Kyle started planning a trip for us in March! Guess who is the planner in this relationship? We spent more time planning the trip than planning our wedding. ("we" may be a little strong. "I" did nothing but get the kids ready and figure out what I was going to wear in NYC).

We were gone for 6 whole days! Only possible because of the greatness of our parents. Both sets of grandparents took care of all 4 kids for several days at a time. No small feat.

Hank is adorable but a full time job for sure! We can't thank you enough for allowing us to celebrate our anniversary together and without kids. Our kids had a great time and we loved our time alone.

If we had to title our vacation, it would be called, "Eating our way through New York City: One cupcake at a time."

Not very catchy is it? I'll work on it.

Here are a bunch of pictures. I will do my best to narrate our trip through these photographs.

One place that was everywhere in NYC was a fresh sandwich/salad place called Pret A Manger. Now you are supposed to say it in a French way (something like Pret a mon jay). Of course, we used our thickest Texas accent to say it the way it looks. Pret a Manger. Like baby Jesus was born in a manger.

We went there several times. The food was delicious, fast, not too expensive and not so heavy.

Kyle had an app on his phone that we used a lot. Hipstamatic. Here is the beautiful St. Patricks Cathedral.

See me and Matt Lauer? He is totally checking me out.

Side note: You will see an insane amount of pictures of me. We used Kyle's camera and not mine as much. The photographer is now the subject.


Best money we spent--we bought a 7 day subway pass. We rode it all the time. It took me a while to really navigate the subway system well. And on the last day I got cocky and got on the wrong train--twice.

I love the subway. But the subway stations are filthy. Mayor Bloomberg--can you take care of that please?

Just some more cool pics. I forgot what this is called. It is in Washington Square. You know the scene in When Harry Met Sally, when she drops him off in New York? It's here.

We went to so many bakeries while in NYC. Kyle wrote down any cupcake place we saw on Food Network or read about in a magazine or heard about. We went to almost all of them.

Here is my favorite one. Butter Lane (Ted Allen's recommendation). I liked the chocolate cake with creamy peanut butter frosting.
We went to Grand Central Terminal. Just like in the movies. So cool. Our pics didn't turn out so great from the inside. Lighting wasn't great. But it is a beautiful building.
Still in Grand Central Terminal. (Not too far from our hotel)

We went to two Broadway shows. The Addams Family and Promises, Promises. Here I am outside of the theater waiting to see Promises, Promises with Kristen Chenoweth, Sean Hayes (Will & Grace), and Molly Shannon. It was awesome! We had front row seats. I could see their spit--they were that close. It was Molly Shannon's opening night. She was so fabulous. She played a drunk and overly flirtatious female. It was a stretch for her. :)
Eating a muffin at the famous Magnolia Bakery. After going to the Regis and Kelly show. Delicious.
In the audience at Regis and Kelly. They were great. Very gracious. Regis is old! Kelly is about Lainey's size! Tiny. She visited with the audience during the commercial breaks. We saw Condalezza Rice and Hilary Duff and a surprise guest--Jim Parsons (Big Bang Theory).

We walked across the Brooklyn Bridge one day. So cool. It was beautiful the whole week we were there. I love the history of the bridge. Did you know that a woman was the one in charge of the building of the bridge in the last years? And on the first day it opened in the late 1800's--150,000 people walked across the bridge. If you want to know more about it, just let me know!


We saw Pat and Gina Neely from the Food Network. They did a 45 minute cooking demonstration--with a little cooking and a lot of talking. It was fun!

After we saw the Neely's, we met Meredith Davis. She is an old YoungLife kid that now lives in New York City now. It was so fun to see her and have a "local" show us around. I had never been to the Chelsea Market and Meatpacking district area. So cool. I love the West Village area as well. Meredith was a great tour guide! We loved visiting with her. And evidently, when using the term "hipsters" she is NOT referring to the style of underwear I prefer. I guess that means I am not included in the group called hipsters.
Me and Meredith on The HighLine.
On our last day, we went to Central Park and the Boathouse. We saw a commercial being filmed in the park--right by this fountain. Then when we got back to the hotel and turned on Law and Order: SVU--this same fountain was in the opening scene. Pretty cool.

Of course, we had to stop by the Today Show--or as my kids call it, "the news." It was a chilly morning so we didn't stay around too long. We just wanted to see Matt and the gang. He was super friendly to everyone and we got on tv!!
We went to little Italy to eat our last evening. When we went to New York 5 years ago with Blair and Nicole and my parents, we went to Angelo's. It was so good that we went back. It is delicious, authentic Italian food. It's our "regular" restaurant now.
After Angelo's we walked right around the corner to Ferrara's to get some pastries. This is another food network find. I don't usually like treats like these but they were delicious! The lobster tail pastry was so rich!



Here are a few other things we did:

Lunch @ Five Napkin Burger
Took wrong train (but no biggie!)
Audience member of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (he was great)
Went to H & M--like 4 times!
Ate at Pret a Manger (again)
Went in New York City Library (don't worry--didn't read anything)
Crumbs cupcakes
Went to Times Square (way too many people for me)
Ate at Freemans (very obscure location but the best meal we ate)
Found Butter Lane bakery!
Ate at The Standard Grill with Meredith
Saw a Tory Birch store--didn't go in.
Went to a place called Milk and Cookies. Got a cookie (of course)
Saw NYU campus
Went to Tenement Museum
Ate at Stage Deli
Hit Starbucks a lot (Kyle)
Walked through Lincoln Center
Ate at Shake Shack
Went to World Trade Center

Kyle did so much for this trip. Thank you so much babe for taking the time to plan all of this for us. It was so much fun! I love you. Looking forward to the next 10 years!


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Hank

I haven't posted pics of Hank in a while. Or taken very many pics.

I just wanted y'all to see this precious face that I look at all day. Even more lately. He has been sick and needy. And just loves to crawl right to my leg and pull until I pick him up. Precious.


His hair is so cute. It's like a curly blonde mohawk.


He squishes his nose at me a lot. Can you see the enormous gap between his two teeth? He spit a pea through it. Well, not literally. But that would be cool if he could.