Monday, February 28, 2011

My HOME Page(The original reason for the blog)

So I have decided that I was well behind the times here with the old layout. When I originally started this blog it was to keep a scrapbook/journal online for our family. As I got more and more used to blogging, I realized that I was branching out into many different subjects, not all of them really family scrapbook material.  I really enjoy writing on this blog even though I don't always take the time to do it for myself.  I  realized that things don't have to be lengthy to be interesting, even though I know I can sometimes be pretty lengthy! Maybe I can talk Earle into doing and Earle's Corner...that would be interesting for sure. I was so excited today when I saw that you can tab pages! So cool! Then I thought about the fact that we really love having people in our home and hosting new and old friends. So I tried to think of the concept as kind of like just having you over to our house. We would talk about the everyday things, I would probably cook a meal for you, or making you an espresso drink. It is likely that we would have some serious meaningful conversation about life but then we would probably also have some fun and laughs.   So this Home page is going to be the everyday scrapbook page. Just like the original intent was for the blog.  Thanks for stopping by and hope to see you soon!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Corndog, the verb tense

One day earlier this week Ben came to Earle and I and staunchly reported that his brother had said a bad word. We get this quite often from both of the boys and usually the word that they think is a bad word is not a bad word. So we asked him what the word was. Of course he would not tell us because in his head it was a bad word and he did not feel he could actually say it to us for fear of punishment. We told him that it was okay, and after going round and round about this we asked him what letter it started with. He told us it started with an "H". We finally got around to figuring out that Collin had said the word "hate".  We then asked Ben to tell us how he said it. Once again, Ben refused because he did not want to get into trouble. So Earle had the brilliant idea of trying to give Ben a different word to use in place of hate so that Ben would use it in the sentence that Collin said it to him. Earle told him to say the word, "Corndog" instead of hate. Of course what Ben told us that Collin said to him was, "Ben, I corndog you." Collin was in trouble because he is definitely not supposed to say that to people, but it began to be a game somehow of using corndog as a code for hate which obviously we never intended. The boys just think that the word corndog is fun to use, and they don't really know what a corndog is. All week, I have been telling them not to say "corndog" because of how they are using it as a code for "hate". But it all sounds so ridiculous to get into deep discussions about the word "corndog". This morning, the four of us went to have coffee at Starbucks for breakfast before Ben's game. Earle and I were chatting, and there were quite a few small tables of people within earshot of our table. Earle and I paused our conversation to hear Collin and Ben very seriously listing the things that they corndogged. Collin commented that he corndogged strangers. And Ben commented that he corndogged men. Collin also commented that his "big softie(security blanket he sleeps with)" corndogged Daddy. People were giving us somewhat strange side glances because of how all of this sounds. I was horrified and looking at Earle like, "I cannot believe you taught them to say CORNDOG"! It sounds horrid and they have no idea what it sounds like they are referring to! Earle still can't help but smirk and giggle when all this is happening. We quickly finished up and threw away our trash and left. The more we try to get them to stop the funnier that they think it is. We need to come up with another word. I corndog corndog.

Simply Saturday

I realize that I have not been posting as I should so I thought I'd do something that I thought would be sort of easy. I am way behind on pictures of the boys so I decided to take my camera with me last Saturday morning to let you follow us on our morning. The boys usually wake up early on Saturdays. This is annoying because I have to wake them up on school mornings but for some reason the past few Saturdays they have been waking up in the six o'clock hour. After we get dressed on Saturdays, the boys like to go up to a place called La Centerra near our house that has a Starbucks and lots of other shops. They also host a Farmer's market every Saturday morning and they like to sit in the courtyard and drink their hot chocolates and eat their coffee cakes and run around as they please. They play music over the speakers there so there is always lots of wild silly dancing by our two.

Love this one!

After breakfast we browsed a few shops with good sales. Collin enjoyed watching the cartoons at Crazy 8's.
 Later in the morning we go to see Ben play his basketball game. He has just tried basketball for the first time and really seems to like it. So funny to see a 5 and 6 year old team playing a game, but it is also neat to watch how they can pick up the strategies and concept of the game so quickly and really improve from game to game. Ben was really into blocking on defense during this game. Earle said they had not practiced blocking during his weekly practice but that he had played a good team the week before that were good at defense and he just decided to try his hand at overpowering blocks with his long arms and tall frame. It was funny. We were proud of him.

One of Collin's newly coined terms is, "Mom, I am SO boring!" Which means that he is bored. This is what he is telling me here at Ben's game as you can see sprawled out on the floor.

Topped the morning with kid's meals at Fazoli's. My kids think that there is nothing better than the bread sticks! It was a good morning. I am so glad that I have these good times to enjoy with these boys!


Friday, February 4, 2011


In split second I look over my shoulder.
What in the world is chasing me?
Where has the time gone?
Running from one thing to the next.
Where is my husband? Where are my kids?
Oh, I see them...although they are tiny specks in the distance in front of me surrounded by a beautiful light.
Underneath me my feet run on a large black road with a white strip in the center;
formed by the hand of God, I think.
I look behind me. There are people behind me pushing me. Helping me. Friends, Family, Angels, Randoms.
I look forward and run faster to get to my family and the light. Can I go any faster?
I hear my sons call my name, "MOM!"
Wait, that seemed to come from behind me. I look far behind me. Yes, it is them, but I thought they were in front of me.
What? I look ahead...nothing, but snide snickers and jeers but no being to represent.
An illusion?. Yes.
Who is chasing me?
I look down. The road is all black.
I look behind me again. Wait a second, who are the Randoms?
I've missed something.
Who is chasing me?
Dear Lord, who is chasing me?
Oh. No.
How did I get in front of him?
I look up.
I can't stop, he's behind me and close.
I try to utter "help" but no sound will come out.
I am nauseated. How could I have not known?
I look up.
A hand reaches down and I grab onto it. It pulls me off of the road.
Be still, He tells me. Be still. Wait for him to pass; he can't see you when you are still.
I sit as still as I can and as quiet as I can. I see him run past me down the road. My children are behind him and my husband. They see me and stop and walk to Him and I.
There we sit, still, confused but joyful.

Thank goodness God is a god who saves us and does not confuse us.  Too bad Satan likes to.  I was in a mood to write tonight but had no good is what emerged. Ah well, you know, sometimes getting heavy is okay:)


Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Beginning....

January 22, 2011
So, 11 years ago, today(by the time I finish typing this) Earle and I went on our very first date. Randomly, he called me up the week before and I had had not so much a crush, but lets just say a "peaked interest" in this Earle Brown. He was in the singles group at my church. Well, he was actually teaching the singles bible class and organizing their upcoming ski trip. He was not bad to look at and a big plus was that he had a job and seemed to be a somewhat comfortable, confident individual. Yes, that is how I sized him up at the beginning. Before I knew a single thing about him.  This is way too much information, but it may be even more weird and random that only 12 years prior to this on the same date,  I officially "began" my "journey" into womanhood at the age of 12 but as you know, God strings all things along in life, randomly, and thus the story of my 'now' life began.
At this time in my life I would be 24 in a weeks time. I had been teaching elementary music in a suburb of Houston during the day and tutoring kids part time at Sylvan learning center a few nights a week for extra income.  I had recently been home for Christmas and then home again shortly after for my brother's wedding. I was no where near thinking that I would be considering marriage any time in the near future.  I was actually considering moving from Houston after the school year had ended to another city where some of my good friends from college lived.
I had come in after a long day and evening at work. One of my roommates, Melinda, informed me that some guy had called me that she did not recognize. She said that he had a very manly sounding voice, and that he had said that he would call back later. That he did. He called and we talked for quite a while. He then asked me if I would go out with him on Saturday evening. That I also did. I was sort of excited because he had "basic potential" on the Carrie potential meter, and I had kind of hoped he would ask me out for awhile. I remember wondering what I should wear. I ended up wearing a black three quartered length black blouse with a black skirt from the Express with some blue and green embroidery at the bottom with a pair for of somewhat awesome black zip up boots. I have no idea what he wore.  My friend Melinda said that you could smell the perfume/cologne trail as we left our apartment where he picked me up.  He took me out to dinner to one of my still favorites, "Lupe Tortilla's" restaurant here in Houston. We spent a long time talking and after that we went to see a movie. I offered to pay for the movie. You know, to take the pressure off of him and he said, verbatim, "Um, no, I'm sorry, I can't let you do that."  Good move Earle, good move. I would have taken note;). A girl wants a man to take care of her, even if she does not really need to be taken care of.
It was a stupid movie that I remember hating called, "And The Cradle Will Rock." All in all it was a very nice evening though. We seemed to have similar humor and there was an easy flow of conversation and we really enjoyed each other's company. He walked me to my door and asked me if I might be interested in going out on another date. I told him "Yes, of course!" Still unsure that I might be saying yes because of  pity, he asked, "Really, would you really like that?" And I said, "Yes!" And then I went inside, no kiss, just a great time. A gentleman for sure.
Lately, I've been thinking quite a bit about Earle and I. We have had quite a bit of transition over the past few years and our lives have been busy and distracted lately. I always thought when I met, "the one" for me that it would be someone who was one of my best friends or someone that I had known for years or that I had dated for years. This was not the case with Earle and I. We just knew that we wanted to be with each other for the rest of our lives. We loved each other and we were committed to each other. We truly enjoyed being around each other. We only dated for 3 months before we were engaged. That is not long enough for best friendship.  So it was weird in a way that the friendship actually grew into the deep friendship after we were married. Not at all what I had pictured. And I'm so glad that God put him in my life. Strange how you think you know how things are going to be, but something can catch your eye in a way you are not expecting and it can turn into something so meaningful and lasting. I'm just very thankful for that man these days. He's a good one.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Christmas 2010

Well, I am way behind in posting! But I wanted to post the Christmas morning pictures of the boys. We did not have as many pictures this year, for whatever reason I did not have my camera. We had a great Christmas morning and day with the four of us and my parents and Lorie. The boys loved having Christmas at their house this year. It was nice to be able to put up a tree and actually use it for the desired purpose of Christmas morning and not have to travel. We had a relaxed day and just enjoyed being. It was laid back and nice.

 Here are also a few pictures of my parents and the boys at The Children's Museum here in Houston. They had a good time! They really enjoyed being with Papa and Cindy!