Friday, November 4, 2011


(Halloween and birthdays to come - camera cord still MIA!)

Lucky girl Jamie had her 15 month check up yesterday, complete with six shots and blood work. She has been one sad and sick little girl since then. We spent most of the night cuddling in her rocking chair, trying to break her fever. Better one feverish night than polio, right? Today she is still clingy and quick to cry, but she's starting to play on her own again.

One of the nurses gave Tyler a blue tape measure, and he has been measuring everyone since then: I am 72, Jamie is 104, and McKay is 7.

We took down our Halloween decorations on Wednesday to Christmas music. Didn't you know? On Nov 1 it becomes legal to listen to Christmas music at any hour of the day. Or all hours of the day, if you live in our house.

Happy November everyone!!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Quiet-ish mornings

Every morning, after McKay kisses us goodbye and leave for work, Tyler, Jamie, and I carry bowls of steaming oatmeal topped with brown sugar and frozen blueberries to the dining room table. Jamie reigns over us from her high chair smearing oatmeal on everything in reach; Tyler picks out all his berries, puts them on the table, and carefully spoons out the top layer of dissolved brown sugar on top ("DON'T STIR IT MOM!!!"), eats it, and leaves the actual oatmeal more or less untouched. I sit back in my chair and look out our dining room window, which I would show you if I knew where our old camera's cord was.

Our backyard is magic in the morning. The sun at 7:30 just starts to filter over the trees into our yard through all the leaves.

This is not our backyard, but this reminds me of it. I love sitting there for the ten minutes that Jamie will let me, just soaking in the goodness of green and light and life, thinking about big life decisions that have to be made and diving into some good news:

A friend from BYU whose blog I stalk regularly shared her wonderful idea/goal for this year, and I am doing my best to keep up:

I am almost through with Acts now. I'm amazed at how much more sense the scriptures make when you read them more than a chapter at a time. Also at the gems I never noticed before like Acts 17:27-28.

Que soul resonation.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Typical conversations

Daddy: Tyler, do dinosaurs eat their mommies?

Tyler: No! They eat leaves!

Daddy: Oh, like these leaves?

Tyler: Yeah! And then they turn it into poop!

(At this point, Tyler finished putting an expired driver's license into his "purse", zipped it up, and announced he was going to the store to buy wheels.)

I love this boy.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Practicing our snooty faces

With the much needed weather cool down these last few weeks (hello, 80s!!), the babies and I have started running again! We've had our double jogging stroller for a year now, but it was always such a hassle dragging it up and down three flights of stairs in our apartment, and as soon as we moved into a house it soared into Satan weather. But now we can use it!

Our route takes us one street north of our neighborhood into a community called Highland Park. This is the Big Deal, the Beverly Hills of Dallas. This is where the rich people live, like President Bush (when they aren't at their ranches or whatever).

For 2.7 miles, these are the lovelies that greet us:

I love it! Even more than looking at the architectural goodies, I love pretending that I live there, waving nonchalantly when we pass people. Of course, we run at 10AM, so most of the people we pass are Guatemalan nannies and landscape day laborers, but hey, it's a good time.

Tyler and Jamie get so excited for our run every morning. Tyler likes to walk the first block of the route, and he likes to wave at the elderly people walking their poodles. We keep a sharp eye out for tractors and trucks along the way. Jamie squeals when she sees the stroller, and runs to grab a handful of shoes out of her room.

Speaking of shoes, this girl is seriously crazy about them. We keep them in the bottom drawer of her dresser, and she muscles it open, rummages around, grabs a few, puts them on, takes them off, walks around with them, and discards them around the house.

We probably won't ever live in a neighborhood like this, but we can dream.

And plan on trick-or-treating there. Can you imagine the size of candy bars they must give out!?

Monday, September 26, 2011

September, Where'd You Go?

Our camera had the misfortune of taking a swim in my parents' pool while we were on our California trip, and I hate blogging without pictures! But September went by so fast, and we're still camera shopping (suggestions are welcome!)

1. I started the new semester, and I'm taking (gasp) 16 credits. It's a tad crazy, but if I can get these last few classes in Dallas finished quickly, I can be done with my B.A. by next September, and that thought is carrying me through late night Biology labs. I've been waiting for this since Tyler was six months old, and I'm finally being able to do it! It's funny, when I was in school, I never appreciated the fact that I was in school. Now, I LOVE learning. I love reading for my classes. McKay makes fun of me because I actually read everything and take tons of notes. After three years of only being concerned with taking care of babies, it's wonderful to feel smart and to learn new things. I feel like a real person again! :)

2. McKay had his 28th birthday while we were gone! That was not in the plan, but a couple of sick babies had other plans. There are presents in the works right now, so more on that later.

3. We are finally getting settled in the new house! It's been cool enough to do yard work lately, so we ripped out everything in the flower beds and planted big bushy chrysanthemums, and in the spring, we'll have daisies and tulip bulbs. So cute! We're also finally getting around to making curtains and hanging pictures, all those things that make it homey.

4. We had a huge yard sale this last weekend with our friend Eve and her two kids! I was really glad for the chance to get rid of all our extra baby clothes (four big gray bins of just Jamie's stuff! Ridiculous!), and maybe make a little extra cash. We did get rid of everything by the end, thanks to rabid freecyclers (don't invite them if you aren't prepared for crazy town). I did make a little money, although I just turned around and bought a bunch of Eve's stuff. It was a ton of work, but I'm glad we did it, and our house is looking more and more uncluttered. Flylady would be so proud!

So life is going on. September went by too fast! The holiday season is already here, and we don't even have our decorations out of moving boxes yet!

More updates to come, and hopefully pictures soon!

Monday, September 19, 2011

California Trip, Pictures Galore!

With the forecast soaring into death zone for way too long, the babies and I fled the state for the rest of August. Not even the thought of a 3000 miles round trip could make us stay!

Oh, so very much driving...

Good bye Texas! This is pretty much how Tyler and Jamie looked for the duration of the trip. Jamie, disgruntled if not screaming, and Tyler gleeful because he figured out how to unbuckle his seat belt.
It always surprises me how freaky a completely flat landscape looks, like the sky is too big without mountains.
We stopped in Santa Rosa, NM for the first night. I have no idea how Tyler and Jamie got so dirty just sitting in their car seats all day, but we had a mandatory bath time. It was well received.
Tyler was SOOO excited about his big bed he got all to himself. (Jamie and her Pack N Play were banished to the bathroom area due to incessant giggling at Tyler at midnight.)
We stopped in Hurricane to visit Robin and her family, and they had a great little splashpad for the kids to run around in.

Another seven hours in the car finally got us to California! Because of the lovely 70 degree weather, we were able to go to the park lots of times:
Jamie glaring at me. Come to think of it, she's glaring at me in most of these pictures. I don't think she likes the camera :)
We brought Chance with us, and Tyler was really excited about walking Chance, until...
Well, it is was fun while it lasted.
Of course we had to stop by the Magic Kingdom for a day!
Two mommies and three babies on Peter Pan!

This was the first trip Tyler had fun on the rides. For the first few years, he was just confused/mesmorized by them. Then last year, he refused to go on any of them, preferring to just watch them. For hours. Sitting outside in the heat, just watching other people go on rides.

Happily, this time, he was excited to actually go on the rides.

Once he figured out the controls, Tyler had the best time on Dumbo.
This is one of my favorite pictures. I love, love, love how much fun my dad and Tyler have together when we come to visit. Tyler is so excited to show Grandpa everything, and Grandpa is more than happy to be led by the hand around Fanstasyland all day long.
Tyler found a book of pressed coins at my parents' house the night before we went to Disneyland, and because of their oval shape, he called them his "disneyland egg monies". He insisted on bringing them the next day, and Grandpa helped him find a few coin pressing machines to make more egg money. Tyler kept the book in his pocket during the day, and got it out to look at while we waited in in lines.

This was so funny. We managed to sneak Tyler on Space Mountain (he's 39.5 inches tall, and the height requirement is 40 inches), and we were so excited for him to go on a fun, fast ride that I totally forgot just how fast it is. And loud. And dark. And terrifying for a three year old. As soon as we shot forward, my heart dropped and I just thought Oh no, this is going to ruin the rest of the day, what was I thinking? Tyler was clutching my hand the entire ride, and because it was so dark I couldn't see if he was scared. When it finally ended, and the lights came on, I glanced over at him. He looked at me, and said "Whoa, that was fast!" in a not-scared voice, and I was so relieved. Then he said "Mommy! We went into space! LIKE WALLE!"

We found the Bug's Life waterpark in California Adventure, and I think it was the highlight of Jamie's day. She had been fussy on and off for the morning, and then full out furious when she developed an awful diaper rash right before lunch. But when we put on her swimsuit and set her free in the little water park, she was all smiles.

Tyler and my dad ran into a few storm troopers on their way to Astro Blasters. I don't think Tyler knew what to make of them.

Whenever I was around, Jamie tried to act like she didn't like Grandma or Grandpa, but the reports are that as soon as I left, she loved to snuggled right up to Grandma and play peek-a-boo with Grandpa. But as soon as I came back, this scowl is all she would give them. Grandma calls it the "mom show", and Jamie is the star.

We were in California for three weeks, and did lots more fun things after Disneyland, but my camera went for a swim in the pool shortly after this, so we don't have any more pictures. But we had a great time, and loved seeing all our family. For some reason, I didn't get any pictures of Kim, Maddie or Macey, but they were over every other day, and Tyler and Maddie had so much fun together. I wish we lived closer so we could see them more! Tyler's still talking about his "other cousins" and Grandma and Grandpa and Uncle Richard and Chancie. We miss you guys! Thanks for letting us come visit!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Home Depot Workshops

In our search for fun things to do this summer, we stumbled across the Home Depot Kids Workshops. I know, I know, everyone else has been doing it for years. They are so fun!

The first one we went to was so perfect for Tyler. They built little wooden race cars that first Saturday, and he has been hooked to the "build it store" ever since. (By the way, there is nothing funnier than seeing 25 three/four year old boys all in a line, running their new race cars down the stacked planks of wood together.)

This last time, Tyler, Jamie, and I scouted out our new Home Depot:

Sunday, August 7, 2011

A rebuttal

So Sebastian DID like one of our dinners last week, as well he should, because it was freaking delicious

Internet, meet Buffalo Club Sandwich:


Horatio Thelonious Ignacious Crustaceous Sebastian

No, not that one.
This one.

This is Sebastian. His dad does construction work on the house next door everyday between drinking a beer and yakking on his cell phone, and for some reason, he brings his five year old son with him. So we invite his bored little boy over to play. Tyler calls him "my best friend Dastin."
They get into all sorts of mischief together.
Mainly tearing the house apart in record time.
And when I snap, I banish them to the living room to watch Wall-e.
And Jamie seizes the opportunity to sneak into Tyler's room to play with all the abandoned toys.

The only problem is that I don't know how to kick him out at dinnertime. The few times he has stayed, he told me he doesn't like the dinners I make and suggested we order pizza instead. So he's banned from dinnertime at our house.

Anyway, some days we have to walk him to the door, put him on our porch, and close the door behind him. Sad, but also sadly necessary.

Anyway, how do you kick your kids' clingy friends out the door at the end of the day?

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

This pop isn't working, Benny! I'm baking like a toasted Cheese-It, it's so hot here!

Hello August!
Today will have a high of 108!
Tomorrow gets even better with a high of 110!

Just two days in and you've worn out your welcome.

Today is the much anticipated 32nd consecutive day over 100 degrees, the second longest streak in Texas history. Now we're all on the edge of our seats to see if we can beat the summer
of 1980, where it stayed over 100 degrees for 42 days!

As exciting as all of that is, it has inspired us to flee the state for the rest of the month.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Burglar

Last night was kind of terrifying.

McKay and I had just put Tyler and Jamie down to sleep, and we were in our room working on various things (me, homework, McKay, Angry Birds), when I thought I heard a door creak open somewhere in the house. I didn't think too much of it, and I asked McKay if he had heard anything. He said no, but he stood up and walked towards the bedroom door to go check it out.

Before he reached the door, we heard quick footsteps running down the hall, away from the bedrooms.

Tyler never, ever gets out of bed after we put him down, so you can understand the panic we felt.

McKay grabbed a big polka dot umbrella, and I grabbed some curtain rods, and we hovered in our doorway, hearts in our throats, hands shaking, torn between grabbing our babies and hiding from whatever or whoever was in our house, and charging down the hallway with our makeshift weapons. McKay yelled a few times down the hall to the rest of the darkened house. I became very aware of the fact that all our hallway light switches were where the footsteps had gone towards, along with our cell phones, knives, hammers, and anything else that might have been more useful than a $5 Walmart umbrella against a robber, and why oh why did we move so close to downtown?

As we stood frozen in the doorway, Tyler peeked his head out of his bedroom across the hall to see what was going on. I snatched him up and pulled him behind me.


"Tyler, shhh."

"Momma, I gotta go potty."

"Shhh, Tyler...wait, what? You have to go potty?"

"Yeah, I get out of bed, I go potty."

"Tyler, did you just get out of bed to go potty, and then run back into your bed?"

"Yeah, I run back into my bed."

All the tension and adrenaline just whooshed out of us as we realized what had happened. Tyler had, in fact, gotten out of his bed, cracked open his door, and then ran back into bed when he heard us coming. (The raised foundation of our home plus the hardwood floors makes it hard to tell exactly where the footsteps are coming from.)

Rest assured, we did still search the rest of the house, just in case. And Tyler trotted happily off to the bathroom. I spent the rest of the night researching the best way to handle break ins, and I am happy to report I learned nothing useful but I am now freaked out of my mind.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Our Park Buddy, Mr. Clemens

"Against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand."

--Mark Twain

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

TuTu & 'Stache Bash!

(Get ready for a picture bonanza...)
Last summer, when Jamie was born, she came in a trio of Hinckley cousins:

Jamie: June 24, 2011
Megan: July 9, 2011
Grant: September 24, 2011

So when Kendy and her kids came to visit right in the middle of all these first birthdays we decided to have a big joint birthday party for all three babies.

All the girls the night before making tutus for party favors, while all the boys went to a Ranger's game.
All our guests with their respective accessories:
Mustached boys

Tyler took his mustache-wearing very serious.

Tutu'd girls
Pretty Birthday Girl!
Each birthday baby had a cake: the girls got initial cakes with pink icing tutus, and Grant got his very own mustache cake :)
Some party decorations! (That didn't actually get printed out in time, but I thought they were so fun)

We played Pin The Mustache On The Grant and Pin The Tutu On The Jamie and Megan.
Birthday girls in their tutus watching the older kids playing party games
Tyler was SOO excited about playing the games
Oh well, Grant's armpit is just as good...
Birthday girls bored with the games and trying to break into the forbidden upstairs.
Water balloon toss outside!
Tyler was horrified that we were breaking the water balloons, and held onto this red one for twenty minutes, scowling at everyone who threw theirs.
Jamie did not join the water balloon toss, but she was so happy to be outside. She hadn't been feeling great that morning, and she was so happy to get to crawl around on the deck.
Cake time! The lineup...
And they're off!
I regret to report that Jamie is no stranger to cake. She knew just what to do with this slice. Megan watched her cousin in awe. Or disgust, I can't tell :)
The babies weren't shy about their cakes:
Grant developed an interesting technique. He dipped a pretzel stick into the icing over and over before diving in with his hands.
Jamie and Megan kept showing each other their fist fulls of cake and then looking under their plates for more.
The rest of the kids liked the cake too, although they were pretty adamant that the girls should only eat the girls' cakes, and the boys should only eat Grant's cake. Any deviation was quickly ridiculed.
A birthday-suit bath was mandatory after all that cake!

Thanks for coming everyone! We had a great time, and we are all are ready to sleep until their second birthdays next year.

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