Ashe Background

Ashe Background

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Easing back into our life.

Since Eric has been home, we have enjoyed hanging out with each other and lounging around. It has been so great to have him back and the kids have been over the moon. When he first got back Ethan, who adores Eric, was fine with the transition. It took Gracie about five minutes and then she was back to normal. On the other hand, it was a big change for Eric because Gracie has changed so much from the last time he saw her. Not crawling to taking steps, drinking out of a bottle to now using a cup, eating baby food to eating table food.......the list goes on an on. However, this week we all have gotten a chance to spend time with each other and the kids have enjoyed someone other than Mom come to the rescue. I think one day we literally ate out and watched movies all day. It was great! Of course, Ethan has unfortunately become accustomed to it and now whenever I ask what everyone wants to eat, Ethan says "Lets go to a restaurant". Thankfully, peanut butter and jelly usually wins him over. He could eat it three times a day if I let him.

However, after this week we are trying to ease back into our life and finish off a few projects before Eric goes back to work. I would love to have a deck in our backyard and we need to add some landscaping to the front and back yard. So as Eric told our neighbor "She is cracking the whip!" we are going to try to finish it all. The pictures below are of Ethan and I planting some new plants for our front patio.

Finally, a bittersweet story about our kids. The other day Ethan was just having a bad day and one of the kids on the block decided she didn't want to share her ball and took it away from Ethan. Ethan started that incoherent whine and just wouldn't stop. I first asked him if he even asked her if he could play with the ball. He said yes, and that she still wouldn't share. So I started to explain that it is her toy and she has the right to take it away (which I am sure confused him even more because he nor Gracie have that right) and there are 50 million other toys in our garage just waiting to be played with. Well, he informed me that he wasn't going to do that. I warned him if he continued, inside he went. Well, two minutes later he was inside. He went and sat in time out and by this time he is balling his eyes out. So here comes little sister to save the day. She comes over all smiles and tries to get a laugh out of him. Once she realizes that doesn't work she gives him a big hug, lays her head on his shoulder and is patting him on the back. It was just so cute, you could see she just wanted to make him feel better. Once his time out was over, Ethan walks over for our chat and tells me his side. The first thing out of his mouth is "I give up!". I explain to him it is not a fight to see who can win. He tells me that she was mean, wouldn't share her ball and feels like he is being punished because of her. I explained to him that she is not in our family so her rules may be different from ours. I also explained to him that we always share our toys but we have to be prepared to know that others may not share theirs. Plus, you can't throw a fit every time someone says no. Well, those statements didn't seem to help until I said "If she lived in our house, she would defiantly be sitting in time out too for not sharing." That seemed to make everything better because his mood changed and was ready to move on. He walked over to his mini couch where Gracie was and sat down. He put his arm around her, she scooted over and leaned it. It was too cute. He needed a hug and she always tries to make Ethan smile!






Tuesday, April 21, 2009

ERICS HOME !!!!!!

As our family and close friends know, Eric has been deployed for the last 4 1/2 months. We are so grateful to have him back in our arms and missed him more than he will ever know.



As soon as Ethan saw his Daddy, he ran straight for him.
Sorry about the head, I wasn't the one taking pictures








Eric showing Ethan the presents he brought back


Gracie likes her trick jewelry box

Turban wear

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Gracie and all her Glory


I am so glad I had the camera out and was playing around with the kids because I was able to catch Gracie taking her first steps. The first video is of her dancing and acting like she was ready to take the leap, the second is of her actually taking that step and the third is of her singing e-i-e-i-o. For your information I do know the whole song but she only knows that part so I only sing the part she knows.

video


video


video

Crazy kids


When our friends the Bolins were here, Miss Kayla showed Ethan how to play dress-up. Now that is all he wants to do. Unfortunately, Kayla forgot to pass on her fashion sense to Ethan.


Is a smile too much to ask for?

Friday, April 17, 2009

Busy Bee

Well, I have taken over our playgroup so I have been busy getting all the membership, activities and moms under control. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to post anything regarding the kids in long time.

Ethan has been busy keeping up with his friends. He is so cute because every time we leave a play date or something, he has to go and personally say goodbye to each of his “guy” friends. He loves to see me do silly /funny things and always replies with “Your crazy, Mommy” Today at the store, I dropped some items and Ethan seeing I was rushing replies with, “Slow down Mom, slooooow dooooown. Take your time” Another instance that makes me question who the parent is. He loves to play Hungry Hungry Hippo and Chutes and Ladders. He will even try to fudge an extra space or two to get him to a ladder. I have a calendar printed out with clip art on each day of what our activities are and he loves being able to tell me what we will be doing that day. I think it makes him feel like he is in control. He loves drawing shapes and watching as his Dad guesses what each shape is. I think it is hilarious when Ethan asks Eric what each shape is and when Eric guesses correctly, Ethan replies with “Your right, good job”. Ethan does pretty well getting himself dressed but to this day, will not put his own socks on. Thankfully, it is sandal weather. Sometimes if I am feeling flustered I catch myself being short with Ethan but only when he brings it up. For instance, Gracie was throwing the biggest fit ever and Ethan ran up and asked me a question, instead of answering his question, I kind of ignored him and replied with “NOT now Ethan”. He in the saddest voice, replied with “Are you angry? We don’t talk like that; remember how we speak to others”. I wanted to DIE, that is the exact words I say to him all the time and he literally called me out on it. So I just left Gracie screaming on the floor, Ethan and I went over to a corner, I told him I was sorry and that he was right to correct me, I answered his question and we started to read a book together. Gracie forgot what her problem was and soon followed.

Gracie is defiantly my middle child; in fact we need to have more kids because being the middle child suits her so well. There is a strong difference between Ethan and her at this age. Ethan was more physically developed along at this age than her, but she is by far more mentally along than him at this age. At the dinner table she will make a strange noise and try to catch Ethan’s attention. If he doesn’t look at her, she will change the noise up and do it louder. Once he acknowledges her she will keep doing it to get a laugh out of him. If he has a toy and she wants it, she will do anything to get it. She will hit, jump on him, push her head into his; I mean anything to get that toy. Ethan just says “Gracie, STOP it! Mom, Gracie needs to learn how to share.” She loves the Backyardigans and dances to the theme song. Ethan didn’t even pay attention to cartoons till he was closer to two. She loves to take barrettes out of her hair and mostly does it while we are in the car. When you ask her where her barrette is, she points to a slit in her Car seat cover and sure enough you can find at least three of them stashed away. She calls all of her stuffed animals and dolls “babyee”. One day I was showing Ethan a picture of his 3 month old cousin Vance and Gracie surprised us all when she pointed to the picture and said “babyee”. She loves talking on her play phone but of course goes silent when a real one is placed at her ear. She says Dada way more than Mama. In fact, the only time I hear Mama is when she is crying. She loves blowing kisses but sometimes forgets to move her hand away from her mouth. She adores Ethan but really doesn’t seem to care for Jager. Ethan loves to play with Jager but Gracie gets annoyed if he just even walks by her. They are so opposite!

Cluck, cluck…Cha Ching!

Today was my bi-monthly grocery trip and I have to paint you the picture because it truly is a site to see. I get there exactly at 8:00am . I call that the “dead time”. It isn’t busy and if there are people, they are well lets put it nicely, close to being put in the ground. With my two troublemakers fully stocked with snacks and drinks, I am clutching to my precious grocery list that is categorized by aisles and whether I have a coupon or not, and my coupon binder. I really go in blazing getting exactly what I need on my list and only stopping if I truly see a good deal. Well, today was a good deal day! I first noticed strawberries are .99 cents so I buy 5 and will freeze them for future use. Thinking I found a reasonable deal, I went to the meat isle and to my amazement Tyson chicken is on sale and I have coupons. Outside it was pouring down rain, but for a split second in the meat isle, the clouds cleared away and the sun started shine. The other Mothers who also come at “dead time” were going crazy. I literally had to jump in the middle just to see what was going on. Tyson split breast ~3 ½ lbs were marked at $4.50 but by the time I factored in the sale and my coupon, I paid 1.75 for 3 ½ lbs of Chicken. I was able to get my hands on 3 of them, and then there were Tyson wings. They were $2.50 regular but with the sale and my coupon, I was able to get them for .60 cents for 2 ½ lbs of wings. I was able to grab 3 of them also. One woman went and grabbed an additional cart to load up on more. I literally was scolding myself and saying “Why don’t we own a deep freezer”?


Needless to say, it was a really good shopping day! I did go $20.00 over my $200.00 budget but seeing how I bought more meat that wasn’t on the list and I saved $50.00 using coupons, I think I did fairly well!!

Monday, April 13, 2009

'Hippity Hoppity, Easter's on its way"

We hope everyone had a wonderful Easter! We had a great holiday weekend but just a wee bit exhausted from the hustle and bustle of it all. On Friday we enjoyed a picnic and an Easter Egg hunt with our playgroup. Ethan found a good amount of eggs and was overjoyed when he found most had chocolate in them. All morning before the hunt, he kept asking over and over "Is it time to go hunt Easter eggs at the park yet??" I didn't know if Gracie was going to get into it and realized when she wasn't, the moment she threw her basket and an egg at me. Oh well, she did enjoy pushing her push toy all around the pavilion though. She is still not walking but will push her stroller around the house like it is nobody's business. She will go from sitting to standing up but hasn't developed the freedom to take that leap. She loves how Ethan makes a big deal about it though. On Easter we went to the base to participate in the Easter Egg hunt there and then we finished off the day with a barbecue with friends. Therefore, by Sunday night we were exhausted and the kids were totally hyped on chocolate. Although, seeing Gracie with a chocolate mustache was priceless.



The BFFs enjoying the picnic

Scoping out the hunt


RUN!!!!!



Gracie just had to sit at the big kid table!
She got so upset when I sat her on my lap to eat and fought with me until I let her sit there.
I have to give it to her, she stayed seated and ate all of her food.

Ethan eating with his friends

Ethan playing at the playgound

It all ended with an exhausted little girl


Ethan ready to hunt eggs at the club on base

Brother and Sister


Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Easter Time


He has always been great at taking pictures, our good little boy!

Now, this was taken as she was sliding off of the chair.
Don't be fooled by those eyes, she was protesting the whole thing.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Coupon Maniac

I have jumped on the coupon bandwagon and it has payed off. Last month I relentlessly clipped coupons and was able to save our family $85.00. I went to the commissary twice and walked out saving at least $40.00 in coupons. Today was my first trip to the commissary for the month of April and I walked out saving $35.00. I even came out $40.00 under budget and have enough meals to last us for 2 weeks. I am in no way as good as Ellie Kay "The Coupon Queen" but I am working on it!

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Poteet Strawberry Festival

Today we went to the Poteet Strawberry Festival. Last year we were busy driving from Ohio so we couldn't make it but I made sure we made it this year. It is a big festival and I think the biggest one I have ever been too. The highway driving up to the festival is filled with the farmers selling crates of strawberries. Of course there were more at the festival as well as all other types of food and entertainment. We saw the Mountain Cloggers dance and the Doggies of the Wild West Show. After that, Ethan got to ride some of the rides but his favorite was the rollar coaster. I also think he really liked the petting zoo because they had some babies in there so he just stayed petting them for ahwile. Unfortunatley Gracie was in one of her moods so she was just not up for pictures, however once we got home and everyone was exhausted and ready for nap--Gracie decides she is ready for picture time. Hence the last one of her hiding. The day before I was getting Ethan all pumped up about going and telling him he was going to ride on some rides, pet the animals, eat strawberries, watch people dance and he turns to me with out looking impressed and says, "But are they going to have food?" I said "Yes, they will food" Ethan says" Great!!!" Yup, he is my child alright! Show me the food!




Doesn't he looked thrilled!!

You would think we made him go on it.

There's the happy face



The dog show

Ethan riding a pony

Petting Bambi

Pettign the baby goat




Are you ready to take a nap NOW?????

Friday, April 03, 2009

Easter Bouqet

Today we made a our Easter craft and it was a bouquet of Hand print Easter Lillies. They turned out really cute and were a cinch to make. It is our Easter gift for the grandparents.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Soapbox

I am going to take a little seat and vent for a moment. I truly try not to complain on the blog but the more I think about this, the more I feel like this is in order. Any woman can tell you that once she becomes a mom; a different world opens up, one that you had no idea existed. At every town or base we go to, I always have the luxury of meeting different woman/mothers and have made wonderful friends. Some I know will be our friends long after the military. However, along with this I have also meet women who literally crack me up. First, there is the mother I like to call “LOD”. Lack of discipline Mother is usually the one whose child hits, bites, kicks, throws and basically shrugs it off as if no biggie. I often find their response is “I keep putting him in time-out but he just runs away so what is the point” Anyone who knows me, knows that I could really care less how you raise your child, but the moment your child hurts my child and you shrug it off will be the moment I introduce you to my mouth! (It has happened folks) Moving on, the next mother I always seem to attract is the Competi-Mom. She is the one who immediately has to let everyone know how much she spends on her childrens outfits and toys. The one who looks down at anyone who shops at Wal-mart but in funniest of coincidences that is the exact place you keep running into her at. Now, this is not a “Holier than thou” vent because my good friend Carmen can tell you that I am a Competi- Mom, but just on the opposite side of the spectrum. She and I will try to beat each other on who got the best deal. Like, “Oh yeah, well I got this for 75% off” kind of talk. I actually find that more exciting to see who got the better deal. Plus, if you’re married to Eric it has to come willingly. Now, those are two very normal circumstance for everyone but just recently I have met a whole new type and the sad thing is it has nothing to do with gender. In a way I actually have learned so much about the type of person they are. As mentioned in an earlier post I have been taking care of our neighbors little girl. Our neighbors were caught in a bind after a family member backed out and their spot at the daycare was not ready. Now, I have always said that I have the greatest and the hardest job of my life being a stay at home mom, but it is something I know is a privilege and especially during these economic times not everyone can do. So when I saw another mother frantically worrying about her daughter (who I have know since birth) knowing I am right next door, I offered my services. Now, this is a paying job so I am not in any way being a savior but I took on the responsibility of helping them for three months. Trust me it does get busy with three little ones but she is the easiest. She is still at the wonderful stage where she is in the exact place you left her and since she doesn’t talk, I never hear any back talk. There are days when they come to pick her up I try to hand over one of mine in her place. To be honest I truthfully didn’t think it was a big deal and she has been on my schedule anyway from the time she was 3 months so I knew it would work out just fine and it has being her last week with us is next week. Okay, back to the my soapbox, Seeing how Gabrielle has A LOT of dark hair and just simply doesn’t look like me, the first question out of other moms mouths are “ Who’s is she?” When I explain “That I am babysitting her for a friend” these are the responses I get: “What on Earth would make you want to take on someone else’s child”, I hope they are paying you a butt load, because that is crazy”, “This people are not even related to you and you still offered to help them”, and my most favorite one of all “Really, at what age do you take kids.” After I explain to them that this is a special circumstance and that I have no ambition to be a daycare provider than they look at my like “Than why do you do it”. One lady, after expressing her negative attitude had the audacity to invite me to join her church. I responded immediately with, “Uh, no thanks!” Secretly thinking, I would have better luck joining a church where I had to become the 16th wife; at least I know I could depend on the other 15 wives in time of need. What came out of this whole experience was being shocked how people reacted. I honestly feel it wasn’t a big deal to help someone else out even if it meant giving up my time. I would hope to God, that if I was ever in need, I wouldn’t come across these women. My point is, due to the multitude of negative responses, am I just the crazy lady who took on more than other people can chew or do people really think it is a dog eat dog world and giving is a mere act of depriving oneself ???? Enough time on the soapbox!

“We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give”. Sir Winston Churchill