Saturday, July 18, 2009

Alaska Cruise-Better Late than Never!!! Part 1

My family took an Alaskan Cruise for our big vacation this year. My parents, my sister Becky and her husband Doug, John, Ava and I were all in attendance. We left May 12th, and we were all SO EXCITED to get the trip going. It took about an hour for all of us to check in for our flight only to find out that the plane we were taking to Vancouver via Phoenix was have engine issues. We were informed of this while I was trying to check my family in, and after my parents and my sister had already checked their luggage...SO, we had to find a new flight because now our Phoenix flight was delayed which meant we would miss our connecting flight to Vancouver. We all finally got on an Alaskan Air flight to Seattle with connecting flight to Vancouver. We were assured that all the luggage from Airline 1 would be taken off plane number 1 and placed on our new Alaskan Air flight. Why do I tell you all of this?

(Ava's first flight ever to Seattle, Age 4. My first flight was to Seattle, Age 20)

Because my sister's suitcase with her wardrobe for the ENTIRE CRUISE did not get placed on the right flight. We find this out at 12:30am in Vancouver, when every airport in the Western Hemisphere is closed. We were told we would have to wait until later in the morning to try and locate her suitcase. My sister was in TEARS.
(Doug and Ava in Seattle. SHE LOVES THAT DOUG DOUG!!)

With nothing else to do til morning, we headed off to the hotel to catch some sleep. Later, around 8am, my sister contacted the airlines to see if the luggage showed up...only to be told they could not locate her luggage on the worldwide luggage finder. They took her number and told her they would contact her if anything came up. Well, the cruise left the docks at 5pm...things aren't looking so good.

We catch our bus to the cruise terminal at 11am, and then Becky calls the airlines again because she is, of course, frantic to have her luggage. Same story. So basically, the only clothes my sister has to wear are jeans, a t shirt, shoes, and whatever she has beneath those clothes. UH oh... The airlines tell her she has $25 a day (with a limit of I think $250) to spend until the luggage is found. What the heck can $25 a day buy you when you need clothes for 10 days? UGHH

SO, LUCKILY, the cruise terminal is located within a few blocks from what has to be Canada's most expensive shopping mall. Becky, Doug and I head off to get her clothes. We spot an American Eagle, so off she goes to spend about $300 for a few shirts, a hoodie--because HELLO, we are going to ALASKA--a pair of jeans..and I head off to find her some underwear. I spot a Sears and think, cheaper than VS right, so I go spend about $80 on those necessities. All the while I am thinking, why can't WalMart be next to the cruise terminal??

We finish shopping for clothes and head to the CVS type store to get her toiletries. While standing on the toothpaste aisle her phone rings--THEY FOUND HER LUGGAGE and was heading to the cruise terminal!! You should have seen her dance! If only they could have found it a few hours before we spent $400 dollars; we didn't have time to return any of it. We race to the cruise ship, because now it is 4:15 and decide the first thing we are doing when we check in is get a DRINK!!
BTW, Vancouver is BEAUTIFUL!!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Ava and Lilli

Today we met up with one of Ava's Primrose friends for some yogurt and laughs. Lilli left Primrose about a month ago. Her mom emailed me to ask Ava for a playdate because Lilli has been saying she lost her best friend Ava. I thought that was sweet.

If you have a Yogurt Story near you, GO!! It is awesome!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Ava's Father's Day Questionnaire

I really love it when my daddy kisses me.

My dad likes to play with me.

My dad always tells me to quit licking him. (She goes in for the kiss and licks instead. It makes him sooo mad.)

The best thing he does is play instruments.

It makes him happy when he eats pizza.

My dad loves to relax on the boat.

The best thing he cooks is dinner.

When my dad shops he likes to buy pudding.

My dad’s favorite household chore is the vacuum.

My dad’s favorite TV show is news.

If he could go on a trip, he would go to a big giant boat.

I love my dad because he gives me kisses.

My favorite thing to do with daddy is play bowling.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Ava's Favorite Things

I asked Ava to show me her favorite things in the house. Amazingly enough, her favorite things were all over the house, which suprised me. Here is what she came up with.

First she said she loves all her clothes. She can't live without those. And also her shoes, mainly her pick shoes and flip flops. This is only about a quarter of the shoes she has, but the idea was to get the pink shoes in the picture.

Next came all of her stuffed animals. If you ever think your kid has the most stuffed animals, come to my house. I think WE have the most stuffed animals, and for some reason, people keep buying them for her.

And of course we can't forget hippo! Silly Momma!

Next was where she keeps all her money!

And her very own junk drawer. This drawer is off limits to mom and dad. She is allowed to keep anything she wants in this drawer with the exception of food and live pets. She let me glimpse inside, and I can tell you her drawer contains all of her cds, some hotwheels cars, stupid party gift bag crap that I WANT TO THROW AWAY, and misc items that go to her kitchen.

We left her room and went to her bathroom. What could she possibly not live without in the bathroom you ask? These Avon bath paints are the best little invention ever. They are roll on soaps, and she LOVES them. And they are cheap!!

Soft soap? OK...
And her make up kit...the one thing I about killed my mom for. BUT, since my mom also introduced us to the Avon roll on paint, I let her slide. :)

Off to the office where she points out the digital arts studio. It's pretty cool and lets her have computer time.

In the living room she shows me her book of DVDs. Now obviously some of the dvds belong to us; we don't let her watch Supersize Me!!

In the kitchen she points out her massive jar of Smarties. She gets one treat every day after school. She also wanted me to photograph the gummy bears and marshmellows that are her snacks on the weekends, but that would have made me publish the clutterness that is my pantry right now.

And finally, she brought me to the front door, where I had my outside flip flops. She loves putting these on and hiding when she knows I'm about to go outside and get the mail. One day I spent 15 minutes looking for these shoes and couldn't find them anywhere. Why I looked 15 minutes I don't know, but later I realized Ava had them on while she was playing in the backyard. She told me she didn't have special outside only shoes. I think that was just her ploy to get some new flip flops.

Now she wants me to do a list of my favorite things. Hmm...we'll see about that.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Ava and Kenslie

I am SOOO FAR behind blogging. I will slowly get up to date. These next few pics were taken in April when Mom and Dad took Ava with them to see my brother and his family. Ava and Kenslie are 8 months apart and they LOVE each other! I wish we saw more of them; they only live 4 hours away. But can I tell you how hard it is to get schedules together? ARGGG....

Anyways, here are a few pics of the two beautiful girls doing what they do best--being princesses!!

Bethany is OCD and I can only imagine how much this mess drove her crazy! Hopefully Ava helped clean up. She tends to be good at that!

These next two pictures crack me up. Ava HATES to be crowded in bed. She likes space. But notice how Bethany made Ava her own special bed next to Kenslie's bed but Ava chose to sleep next to Kenslie. I think sometime during the night both girls ended up spread out on the floor. That bed was WAY to crowded!

Friday, April 10, 2009


Sixteen years ago today we went on our first date. Ten years ago today we got married. Either he is crazy, or he puts up with me, or he loves me. I think a lot of love, a LOT of putting up with me, and a hint of craziness.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Mom...Mom...Can I tell you a secret?

Mom, I want to wash the dishes ok?


Me: Sure...

Ava: YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, March 23, 2009

My interview with Ava

1. What is something mom always says to you?
To get away from the TV.

2. What makes mom happy?
when I smile

3. What makes mom sad?
like this...(she makes a sad face)

4. How does your mom make you laugh?
when you go Ha HA HA..( in a deep voice)

5. What was your mom like as a child?

6. How old is your mom?
54 (she said five four)

7. How tall is your mom?

8. What is her favorite thing to watch on TV?
Wonder Pets

9. What does your mom do when you're not around?

10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for?
maybe being cute. (yep, that's probably it!! What a kid!)

11. What is your mom really good at?
Beind very good at church. You were good today Momma. Thank you.

12. What is your mom not very good at?
you not good at letting me watch Thomas and Jerry.

13. What does your mom do for her job?

14. What is your mom's favorite food?
pancakes. Right Momma? I like pancakes. Member you ate my pancakes after Becky's house? And I ate your shrimp? Can we have pancakes for dinner?

15. What makes you proud of your mom?
You put me on your 'puter when I ran around the living room? That's funny. Let's watch it, ok??

16. If your mom were a cartoon character, who would she be?
You can be Thomas. I am Jerry.

17. What do you and your mom do together?
hold hands

18. How are you and your mom the same?
we are CUTE. Right! Daddy, momma and I are cute right? DADDDY: YES

19. How are you and your mom different?
You don't run super fast even though you have super fast shoes. Daddy, momma needs new super fast shoes, ok. DADDY: NO! Ava: Daddy, momma super fast shoes are super slow. So the answer is yes. Momma, I say yes!

20. How do you know your mom loves you?
you tell me, silly face.

21. What does your mom like most about your dad?
that you kissy kissy (insert smoochy noise here)

22. Where is your mom's favorite place to go?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

She loves to clean!

We start at the far side.

And continue.

I made her get in the corners!

Almost done!

And a final dry and we are all done!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

I think Valentines Day is stupid. I think some money hungry CEO at HallMark schemed up this whole idea just to get a bigger bonus.

If your marriage, relationship, whatever...needs Feb 14 to provide romance, then I think you might have a bigger issue.

That's just what I think.

This year, like the previous 16, I told John I wanted nothing. No flowers, no candy, no presents... I think he appreciates the fact that I think it is stupid, although he tries to act hurt and offended. But, honestly, I know if he REALLY was into Valentines Day like most people are, he would get me the flowers, candy...


He thinks it's stupid too! That's why we are so great together.

Happy Valentine's Day

Birthday parties OH MY!!

Ava has been invited to 8 birthday parties this month so far. And the month is not even half way over. We have two this weekend, 3 next weekend, and **sigh** who knows what else is being planned that I do not know about.

The thing is, all of these parties (except for 2) are parties for kids not even in her PK class. Ava is in PK1 and the other 6 of her 8 parties are for kids in PK2. I'm beginning to think that either Ava is REALLY popular, or the parents in PK2 have gotten together and talked and figured out that if she gets the invite Ava will come with present in hand.

And here's the other thing. If we for some reason can't make the party, we bring a gift to school before the day of the party. That's the guilt in me. I don't want some parent to think that Ava likes one kid and goes to that party but doesn't like their kid so she doesn't go to his/her party. The kid whose party we don't attend normally gets about $5 more on the gift tab, because of the GUILT I feel.

I think that in the book "What To Expect When Expecting"--the Later Years--they should include a chapter about birthday parties.

I'm just saying...

This is the "smile" you get when she's just not into pictures.

Monday, February 9, 2009

4th picture tag

I was tagged in a fun photo blog. I am to open the 4th folder in my photo directory and post my 4th photo in that directory. So, here is that picture.

This is a wonderful picture of my very dear friend Emily after a night of fun on the beach. We took a couples vacation with Emily and Daniel and had some very good times!! This picture was taken long before we had any parental responsibily.

I'm not so sure she will enjoy this particular picture posted, but you can still see how stunningly beautiful she is, even if she has a slight hangover.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Ava, as we speak, is using 409 and a sponge to scrub down the kitchen table and chair. actually, I am spraying the 409 and she is scrubbing.

Is it child abuse to let a 4 year old clean out the refrigerator if she BEGS to do so?

Stay tuned. We will see how long this cleaning madness goes til!!

Pictures will follow soon!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Yesterday when I got off work and picked the kid up I decided to go to Target for a little fun momma/daughter time while we waited for John to get home from OKC. We browsed aisle after aisle of Target heaven, looking at all the stuff we so DO NOT need. We started over in the book section because I want a really good LOW CALORIE cookbook (any suggestions out there?) and made our way over to the Wii games. We continued on our way through our way quite quickly to their "world bazaar" home items that just set and is now already on clearance. Ok, so whatever..we keep walking through the aisles when Ava yells "STOP!!! MOMMA STOP!!" I'm thinking she lost a shoe or something for her to be THAT dramatic. Nope. Wrong. What was it that caused such a commotion? Yep, Hannah Montana. This time: a fleece blanket. Well, actually, the whole darned bedding ensemble. I'm like forget it. No way. I have spent a small fortune redoing her room to look so cute. I told her no, watched her pout, and then finally pursuaded her to get a pair of hot pink glitter "princess" slide on shoes (but pitched to the 4 year old as HANNAH MONTANA shoes)to use "on stage" during her "concerts". SOLD!! I couldn't get out of Target fast enough. I knew John was going to just shake his head when he saw another pair of those glitter shoes in the house. But I knew he would be ok when he found out I "gave in" over a 14.99 pair of shoes instead of a 39.99 Hannah Montana blanket.

Well, just so you know: I got played. All I heard about today was how much she needs the blanket cause Emma has a Hannah Montana blanket. And how much she needs the blanket because her room is cold at night and she is coughing because she gets so cold. (She has a down comforter and a nice Serasoft blanket on her bed.) ALL DAY I HEARD ABOUT THIS DARN BLANKET. ALL DAY I SAY.

Anyways, we went to WalMart tonight for some groceries. Me and the kid. I wait until 9pm when I know no one will be there and I can get in and out. I walk down the aisle to the much needed DT Dr Peppers when she does it again. MOMMA!!! STOP!!! What? I look over to see a lifesize Hannah Montana cardboard diplay unit that is on the main drive aisle of the girls clothing pad. On it: Hannah Montana blankets. Oh dear God. Did I do this as a child?

Price for the Hannah Montana fleece blanket at WalMart: 16.00
Price I would have paid to have a picture of John's face when we walked into the house with the Hannah Montana blanket: well, that was priceless.

Damn Disney.

Turnaround time

I applied for passports for myself and Ava on January 13. I received my passport on January 23. I would like to thank the US Government for being on top of their game. Since I didn't get the passport application complete until mid afternoon on the 13th, the process probably didn't begin until the 14th. So, by my calculations, there were only 8 business days from start to finish. That has to be a record right?? It HAS to be a government reccord.

I have to send out my kuddos when to the government for being fast, friendly, and efficient.

(There IS a GOD!!)
I love lazy Saturdays. Days when nothing is planned (except for returning the rental car), naps are essential, and the cozy fireplace warms the chill air.

I love lazy Saturdays. I love turning the phones off, playing a few games with the
big kid and the little kid, and stealing hershey kisses out of the candy jar.

I love lazy Saturdays. Sausage and eggs for breakfast, movies in the mailbox (Netflix) are great in the afternoon, and a fun recipe to follow for dinner.


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

My E-Reader

The best thing about my new e-reader is how easy it is to read while I am on the eleptical. I was on the machine for 45 minutes and didn't even realize the minutes had passed. My mind was all caught up in my last book, The Reader, and I didn't notice the throbbing in my calves until I stepped off the machine.

I knew requesting this little piece of electronic heaven would be good for me!

A few pics from the past week.

On this night she gave a huge "LIVE" Hannah Montana performance and wiped herself out. She was dancing and singing and shaking her cute...then she laid on the ottoman and sang herself to sleep. Look closely, she is still holding the microphone. My little rock star!!

The next day she decided to pretend to be Hannah Montana (at school) and wear obnoxious tights. These are her Miley tights that she said she HAD TO HAVE or else she would be SUPER SAD. I'm not really for sure if this follows dress code or not. I'm guessing it's ok since I didn't get any disapproving looks.

And finally, Ava as a little 4 year old girl not pretending to be a super star. She got this dress from Grandma Wahl at Christmas. We have to make sure we take pictures in her dresses because she has so many clothes she typically wears her dresses once or twice before moving on to the next season. Somebody is going to score BIG TIME when I decide to get rid of her clothes.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Another here goes.

I have been tagged about 6 times with this, so here is my list of 16 things about me (that you might not already know but I am sure you do).

1. I drink Dt Dr Pepper every morning by 7am.
2. I am extremely anal about my house--it must be clean--minus my bathhroom. I need the maid just for my bathroom.
3. I love Coach purses. I love them so much I have bought both my mom and my sister purses to feed my obsession. I don't think they GET it.
4. I call 3 people every (work) day at 5pm. John, Becky and Susan. In that order. Usually Becky doesnt answer on the first try, so this year it might go John, Susan, Becky.
5. I always have my phone on me but seldom answer it. If you really want to talk to me and want me to answer, the secret is to text me and tell me your fixing to call. Then I will answer.
6. I LOVE MY WII!! Best Mother's Day gift EVER!!
7. My all time favorite show is Friends, but the show that gives me pure happiness is The Office.
8. I "get" my sister in law. Bethany, that is. I totally get her and I love her!
9. I used to love El Chico's but one bad experience has ruined it for a lifetime. Just the thought of that place makes me want to throw up.
10. My favorite cousin is Katie Berend. She is the funniest person I know.
11. I LOVE Sam's Carrot Cake. YUMMY!!
12. I regret not taking the time to get to know some past work people.
13. I have a crush on the Under Armour mannequin at Dicks Sporting Goods. He is HOT.
14. I get disciplined daily by Ava because I leave a trail of lights on and that really bothers her.
15. I love my dad's pig raising/pig butchering/pig seasoning skills.
16. I have a very hard time forgiving people who have spoken ill of anyone in my immediate family. Let me clarify that: I won't forgive and I won't forget. And I don't care if you want to pass judgement because of that.

My late Christmas post.

We had one of the best Christmas holidays to date. We were able to go home and see almost every family member I have. I missed a few cousins, but overall, I think we all had a great few days back in Windthorst/Wichita Falls.

On Christmas Eve we went to Mass in Windthorst, then headed to WF for my mom's family Christmas. I did not have my camara available there, but John and I both made out extremely successful in the Chinese Christmas gift exchange. Of course it took some tag teams efforts to get the gifts we wanted, but our strategy worked just fine!! Christmas with Sandra, Nancy, and the rest of my mom's family was the most enjoyable get together yet. Ava had LOTS of fun playing with Taylor and the rest of her cousins. Hopefully we can get those kids together more often.

After we left Sandra's house we went to the MIL's house to spend the night. Carolyn always has her refrigerator stocked full of all our favorite treats, so of course John and Ava went to town on all the food. Ava loves going to Grandma Wahl's house because she has a PIANO that is REAL!! Christmas morning we opened presents with Carolyn. Ava's big gift:

That's right...Barbie is homeless thanks to my mother in law. She went right on QVC and bought the thing out from under poor ole barbie. This thing is HUGE. That's all I will say about that!

Some of Ava's favorite cartoons.

After the Wahl Christmas we headed to Windthorst for my Grandma Berend's party. As usual I was told to sit in the dining room and eat, which I avoid like the plague. As a kid my cousins and I always tried to rush to get a good seat in the dining room, but we were forced to eat in the kitchen. We were told back then the dining room was no place for kids. They should not wonder--they being the "adults" aka my Mom, my Aunt Sherry, my Grandma--why we "kids" now REFUSE to eat in the dining room. That room is for old people only!!!

Ava Grace and Emma Grace

Of course Ava came home with MANY MORE stuffed animals this year. Once again, she has more stuffed animals than Noah had on his ark--so ENOUGH STUFFED ANIMALS!! Ok, yea whatever, I know she LOVES ALL OF THEM!

He thinks I am posting this because he scored a perfect score and was so proud. Actually I am posting this picture because I want you all to see how it IS possible to make a Wii Mii look just like you. John's Mii is so him!!