Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Home away from Home

I feel like we have been "on the go" constantly this summer! A neighbor told us about the Spring Lakes swim team, and Chris is actually a member now! I now have a new appreciation for the sport of swimming~ Growing up in Arcola wasn't exactly the best breeding grounds for swimmers... After one season of swimming on the "Holiday Inn" swim team, Todd and I both hung up our towels- we were not quite the swimmers:) Luckily, it looks like Chris takes after his Daddy and Uncle Sean and is a fish! He's been competing in the 6 and under division at swim meets (which he can swim in for two more years!) and has actually taken a second place in both freestyle and the back stroke! We are soooo proud of him! Swim team takes up a LOT of time... We have practice every day Monday-Friday, and swim meets on Wednesday nights and Saturday mornings. It takes a lot of commitment, but it has been such a great experience~ Chris has made friends, loves being a part of the team, has really learned to swim, and is getting great exercise every day! I guess I better get used to being "on the go"~ I have a feeling that this is just the beginning of things to come!

Return to Springfield

On Sunday night, Brendan decided to take the family to his old stomping grounds... We went to Springfield to watch his old American Legion team play baseball. I was not too excited about this adventure, but it ended up being a great night... for the most part. We packed a picnic dinner, took the kids to a park (of course- we can't have a night without a park:)), went to the baseball game, and then finished the night off by returning to Dryburgh Court and seeing some of Brendan's old neighbors. It was great to see them~ Brendan lived on a court that was like family, and it was nice to catch up! Chris was super excited about the baseball game- and Brendan's old coaches were glad to see him and catch up... They also let Chris jump in the batting cage and hit! Sometimes I think it would be easy for Brendan and I to be the type of parents to "push" sports on our kids since we were both so athletic... but just when I'm afraid we're doing it, Chris makes it easy on me:) I said, "Chris, do you like baseball?" And then, he said, "No, Mommy. I love it fo-fo-fo MUCH!" Addie was also quite the cheerleader at the game. When it started, she stood up and shouted at the top of her lungs clear as day, "GO HOKIES." Good girl:)... But then, she had a few accidents...

I let her run around the track with me... and she somehow found a huge pile of fresh manure... not just any manure- the worst smelling crap you have ever smelled- talk about foul! Of course her foot went right into it... YUCK!

And then, the poor girl fell while playing on the bleachers:( She cut her leg and I felt horrible for letting her get hurt:(.. I thought we were really going to have to watch it for infection, but luckily, neosporin healed it within a day!

Summer Nights...

I LOVE the summer- warm weather, watermelon, lightning bugs... and dinner at Nona and Papa's. The kids absolutely love playing at Nona and Papa's... and it's an easy break for me... I can usually call my parents and "invite myself" over for dinner:) Todd, Sarah, and the kids usually join in, and it turns into such an easy night! We can now sit back and let the kids run- they play on the tennis court, run wild in the field, and just have such a good time:) And best of all~ I usually get out of fixing dinner:) HA!

Double Names

Many of you know that I'm somewhat obsessive with some "southern" things. I like to blame my best friend, Ashley... I LOVE anything and everything monogrammed, smocked clothing, big southern bows in Addie's hair... the list goes on. A couple weeks ago, we were riding in the car and I was talking with the kids about having another baby- NO I am NOT pregnant... but we do plan on having a third... sometimes sooner, sometimes later:) I was asking the kids what they thought about a baby with two names. We often call Addison "Addie Tay"... but I really love traditional double names... I was throwing names out there for the kids... Emma Kate, John Ryan, and then Chris yelled, "I've got it!!! I know what we can name the baby!" I couldn't wait to hear it... and then he proudly announced, "We should name our baby Peter Parker. Peter Parker McCullers." Oh, I love that boy

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The perfect ending...

While it was great to be away and have some adult time... the best part of the trip was returning home... to what makes my world go around:) I missed these two babies sooo much!

The Paris Air Show... Royal Treatment!

The main reason we got to go to Paris is because Brendan was "working." HA! He flew some people to Paris for the Paris Air Show. We actually got to visit the air show before it was open to the public and we were treated amazingly! You would have thought that we were celebrities or something. We were driven right to the Northrup Grumman "chalet" which was right by the runway. We went inside and were given a special pass where we could get in "special corrals", we were completely catered to, and we were surrounded by all of these other people that had their own security teams- aka the people Brendan flies all the time:) I could soooo get used to that life... but, I don't see it happening anytime in this lifetime. I do want to thank Northrup Grumman though for being one of the best employers ever... truly- Brendan is so blessed.

Do you see this helicopter... it was right in front of us... upside down!

Yes, that's the huge Airbus- flying straight at me- It took off about 100 yards from our table!

We were one table from the runway.

An unmanned military airplane!

Speical access... in the cockpits:)

Soooo much fun...

Don't laugh at my spelling- I'm sure I'm totally butchering all these names!!!

The Arch de Triumph

For Brendan's cousin, Paul,... the best bakery!

The best ice cream ever on a random alley street

The gift shop at the Louve... we looked outside, we didn't tour inside... This is as close as I was to the Mona Lisa:)

The Palace of Versailles

Notre Dame

I love this boy:)

From the top of the arch

The awesome shop street... I failed to make it home with a Louis Vuitton

The palace of Versailles

The Catacombs- Totally freaked me out... tunnels way underground with tons of bones!

We came, we saw, we conquered!

Once again, I've been a blog slacker... it took a couple days to get settled back in once I got home from the best trip EVER:)! And then, I got sick, and sicker, and sicker than sicker:( Right now, I'm being treated for pneumonia... but finally feel like I'm at least getting some strength back... I even went to the ER because I was convinced I had the swine flu! O.k.... enough about that... Let me just tell you that I wasn't all that excited about going to Paris. Call me crazy- but my ideal vacation is a beach, sand, sun, anything with water- and I'm a happy girl. I was nervous I would like a "smart" city about art, architecture, etc... but I was so excited Brendan came up with this adventure pretty much on his own, and I am soooo glad he did! We had such a good time just being a couple and it was so fun because neither one of us had been to Paris before- so we were on a mission to experience it all... and experience we did. The trip got off to a rough start... an 8 hour flight being stuck in the middle seat is no fun... and then when DELTA loses your luggage and you are without it for two entire days, you kind of get upset. Yep- my luggage was lost... this seems to happen to me a lot... but at least this time I didn't need a dress for a wedding and I was able to make do! Right Jen?:) Paris was soooo easy to get around and we basically bought a metro card and would wake up every morning and stay out until midnight taking it all in... Seeing all the "touristy" things there are to see, eating great food- ummmm hello pastries, walking random streets, and just enjoying being with each other... in Paris!!! I know it's totally cliche, but one of my favorite things was the Eifel Tower... soooo awesome- except for the fact that we got in the wrong line... without elevators and had to take stairs all the way up to the 3rd level!!!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Back to reality:)

So, it's a little after 10:00am and Addie Tay is still asleep... do ya think she was tired out when mommy was gone:)? Chris was watching cartoons while I came in to check my e-mail and I went back to my room to read him a book and snuggle. I looked at the t.v., and he says, "Look, I'm watching Bolt." I look at the t.v. and it says "play." So I asked him how he got Bolt to play. He took the remote, and said, "I just took the remote, pushed on demand, picked out my movie, and played it." So, $4 later, now I know that Brendan and I can order movies on our upstairs t.v., too. I can't leave that boy alone for a second! I'm about to upload about 300 pictures from Paris... and I can't wait to share about my trip... can we just say FABULOUS!!!?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Double Trouble...

So, last night, we had big plans to do the Ida Lee water park... until a HUGE storm blew through. I felt bad for the kids, so I tried to let them have fun, and I let them "paint" each other with water color paint. It was a great idea until this morning I left them alone for three minutes, and when I came back into the kitchen I almost called 911 because I thought Addie was dying. Thank God all the red stuff all over her wasn't blood... it was just paint... Yes, I didn't make myself clear that painting each other was a one time thing. Oops. Chris and Addie are so funny... after they got cleaned up, they were watching morning cartoons on the couch together. I looked over and almost yelled at Chris for squishing Addie... Then I hear, "Now, it's your turn to snuggle me, Addie." They kept taking turns squishing each other but to them, they were "snuggling" each other. Addie is going to be one tough cookie:) Today was an eventful day... Not only did we have a morning playdate here at our house, then we went to Nona's house where Jack and Mage were for the day, and invited our friends Rosie, D.J., and Mya over. Then, since that wasn't enough, I took Chris to Steve Boyd's pool- where he learned to dive- GO CHRIS! Chris has been obsessed with "Steve Boyd" lately. He thinks he's the coolest person ever... the other day, we were laying in bed for his nap, and out of the blue, he said, "Mommy, does Steve Boyd have a racecar?" You know, because he pretty much has every other toy a man can have:)

The kids have been cracking me up as usual... Here are a few stories:)

Addie and I were walking to my minivan from the park. Addie saw our car and said, "Addie's car." I said, "Addie, is that Addie's car, or Mommy's car?" She then said, "Daddy's car, he makes money." Well, then!

The kids and I were watching "So you think you can dance tonight" and Chris thought one of the girls was really pretty. He said, "That girl's pretty. Mommy, if Averey likes pretty girls, then I like pretty girls. If Dean Alex likes pretty girls, then I like pretty girls." And then he proceeded to name off most of our family. I guess he will like pretty girls:)

Tonight, I was just too tired to tell stories to the kids. Chris is going through a phase where he likes me to tell stories about when I was a little girl. I made Chris and Addie tell me stories tonight. Chris started... "When I was a little boy." Then it was Addie's turn... she started, "When I was a little boy." Then it was so cute- she stopped and looked at me funny, and said "girl." Too smart!

After stories, we were saying our prayers. I said, "And God bless Mommy, Daddy, Chris, and Addie, and ALL the people we love and care about." Chris then said a few more people, animals, things, etc... and then said, "And God bless my Big Daddy." I was like, "What?, Is there something I should know about?" And then he said, "My Big Daddy, my God in heavan." It doesn't get much better than that... Now I need to make a point of getting our family to church!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy

I can't believe it's been almost an entire week since I've updated my blog... Yes, the novelty has somewhat worn off, but I really do love having this. It seems like we are so busy these days... I still haven't finished Addie's baby book and I am definatly not a scrapbooking mama- there is no artistic ability in my body whatsoever... so it has been great having this blog. For those of you that don't know, every year, I plan on printing my blog out in a book for the kids to have... so hopefully they will be able to look back and remember all of the funny stories and things they have done:) I know so often the days just fly by and I don't remember what we did, etc. I can't believe how fast the kids have grown up- right before my eyes... and I truly do cherish every moment. O.k... I'm not going to get all sentimental on you guys- but I will say that I'm having a lot of mommy guilt this week. Why, you ask? Well, Saturday, I'll be headed to Paris for a few days with Brendan- just the two of us. Let's just say he totally outdid my anniversary blog post and went and got all romantic on me and we're going on a getaway... I guess he's met his quota for at least a year or so:)

So, what have we been up to? Playdates at the park... what else?- Aren't they the best thing in the world? We've been getting together with my college roommate Katie and her two kids- and the playdates have been great... We've also had a few "preschool" playdates, neighborhood playdates, and of course family playdates. Today Aunt Ra-Ra and I took the kids to their neighborhood park... It was great until Chris tried to take on not one, not two, but three first graders. It was all over who killed a ladybug. Just fabulous. This weekend, we celebrated Jack's birthday. I was so bummed because I totally forgot my camera- and I wish I had it. Mage helped Jack blow out his birthday candles... and let's just say that not one person ate the cake. Before it was over, the cake was covered in drool and spit... and we all opted for the other sweets:) And it was defiantly a Kodak moment when Eric was being the best uncle ever when we looked up and he had all four kids swinging so high on my parent's hammock. They were hooping and hollering and having sooo much fun, until... BAM... the hammock fell down on one side. The bolt holding the hammock up came right out of the post and the kids went crashing down- There was dead silence, and then Mage said, "What happened?" Luckily we could all laugh because the kids were just fine...

Our week was also filled with some other great events...

Ride em' cowboy!

A playdate with my cousin Aaron's girls... look how sweet girls are... sharing on their own!

Jon, Stacie, and Baby Jonathan made a visit from Richmond for the weekend- it was total last minute, but we had a great time... and we were quite the parents of the year. We held a party at our place...

This picture cracks me up- why is Chris spiderman?:)

The kids actually went to bed easy for us... and we all re-lived our college years... minus the vodka:) It was great fun... but at the end of the weekend... I think we all felt like this:)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Happy Anniversary!!!

Happy Anniversary B-baby... 9 years, can you believe it?!? Thanks for putting up with me- and for letting me be me... and most of all, for loving me just the way I am:)


I know I complain all the time- but thanks for taking such good care of us... and for making our life, my paradise:) I love ya baby!

The kids screaming, phone ringing
Dog barking at the mailman bringing
That stack of bills - overdue
Good morning baby, how are you?
Got a half hour, quick shower
Take a drink of milk but the milk's gone sour
My funny face makes you laugh
Twist the top on and I put it back
There goes the washing machine
Baby, don't kick it.
I promise I'll fix it
Long about a million other things
Well, it's ok.
It's so nice
It's just another day in paradise
Well, there's no place thatI'd rather be
Well, it's two hearts
And one dream
I wouldn't trade it for anything
And I ask the Lord every night
For just another day in paradise
Friday, you're late
Guess we'll never make our dinner date
At the restaurant you start to cry
Baby, we'll just improvise
Well, plan B looks like
Dominoes' pizza in the candle light
Then we'll tippy toe to our room
Make a little love that's overdue
But somebody had a bad dream
Mama and daddy
Can me and my teddy
Come in to sleep in between?
Yeah it's ok.
It's so nice.
It's just another day in paradise.
Well, there's no place thatI'd rather be
Well, it's two hearts
And one dream
I wouldn't trade it for anything
And I ask the Lord every night
For just another day in paradise

Phil Vassar, Just Another Day in Paradise

Easy, Breezy, Beautiful... Summer Days:)

Life has been soooooooooo easy here at the McCullers household... We live outside and then retreat for naps... then return outside:) I really think I'm going to go into depression when winter returns again- I am a warm weather gal~ and lucky my kids love it as much as I do.

Yesterday, I used one of my mom's tricks from when we were little. I turned on the water, filled the kids water table with water, and gave them rollers and paintbrushes and told them they needed to paint the playset. It gave me enough time to read my People magazine front to back- pure bliss:) Note- I was smarter than my mom- Once she had Todd and I "paint" her car... good in theory until my dad pointed out it was scratched from front to back- oops:)

Oh, and of course we continued the water play... and the kids ended up nakie:)