Saturday, December 26, 2009

It's the most wonderful time of the year...

I love Christmas! I love the music, I love the "holiday spirit," I love how I'm done shopping before the month of November, so all I have to do is relax while everyone else is frantically trying to get the perfect gift! Oh, and the time off from school isn't bad either! This year, it wasn't much of a break, though...I spent my time working at Sweet Serendipity, the family candy store. It got crazy at times, but it was fun to have that "girl bonding" time with the Adam ladies. Christmas is so much more fun with children! The joy that sparkles in their eyes as they open something they really wanted...the pride of picking out your gift ALL BY THEMSELVES...what an amazing day! But Christmas wouldn't be Christmas if it wasn't for the spiritual aspect of it... Christmas Eve service at Celebration wasn't what I'm used to on Christmas Eve, but it was beautiful! Pastor Joe's sermon was unbelievably moving, as usual, so I was ok that it was 2pm, not 11pm, and the candlelight singing wasn't to "Silent Night." Being away from my parents on Christmas was strange too, it was my first year to not celebrate with them, but they seemed to have a great day too! Besides, we get to see them in a few days for New Year's! They always throw the best parties...and we do nothing but play board games all night long! I'm so excited that halfway through my break, my vacation can finally begin! In the words of Tiny Tim, "God bless us, everyone!"

Our faculty Christmas party was a BLAST! I have some truly wonderful colleagues that I'm so glad I can also call my friends...

Totally worth the $20 photo and the hour and a half in line!
Lucky kids...Santa comes to TWO houses! :-)
Sibling football rivalry...even on Christmas morning!

What I'm Thankful For...

November was a pretty busy month! Kaitlin is officially a teenager, we partied in Waco for the Baylor game, and I hosted my very first Thanksgiving. It was FABULOUS! My mom came early to help me cook, and the kids were a big help as well! Don, Bev, and Grandma Lentz came to dinner, and it was great spending quality time with our extended family. We stayed away from the malls on Black Friday and instead had our first annual holiday kickball game. What a DISASTER! ;-) The first field we came to was COVERED in fire ants, so we went to the local school. Harrison and Kaitlin were the team captains, but they had some pretty slim pickens for teammates! Scott was probably the best player of the lot, but he ran around the field so much, he was quickly winded and pulled a muscle. Needless to say, the game ended in two innings. We learned that we need to be in much better shape for next year's competition! I'm so thankful for my wonderful family! I have been truly blessed!

We love the Nabors, despite the fact they're Baylor Bears! I'm so proud of my Daddy for wearing orange, even though he went to Baylor, too!
Posing in front of the coolest car EVER!
Posing during our tour of Inner Space Caverns. Despite what you think, it's hot and humid down there!
Talking to Mark on the cell phone, yet continuing to help with Thanksgiving dinner!
Mom bought us all new aprons for our day(s) of cooking! Aren't we festive?! :-)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Happy Halloween!!!

Halloween was another one of those whirlwind weekends in October. We had the kids, and also had a wedding to attend in Dallas, so we loaded everyone up and headed to my parents' house. That weekend really tested me as a stepmom, because Kaitlin really didn't want to go, and was pulling every card she could think of to try and get out of it. She finally got in the spirit of things, and I think things between us are heading back to normal (or at least I hope they are!)...but who can tell with a teenager!

Any adventure with my parents wouldn't be complete without Mark taking at least one silly picture! He was helping Kennedy with her pumpkin and decided he needed to pose with a power tool. As you can see from her face, Kennedy is less than impressed!

The pumpkins with their carvers...then at night all lit up!
Scott and I weren't able to take the kids trick-or-treating, but my parents eagerly stepped in to do that job! The kids looked FANTASTIC - Kaitlin as an 80's rocker, Harrison a baseball player, and Kennedy "Jasmine," or an Arabian princess...most people thought she was a gypsy, but who cares?! She was adorable!

The wedding was a blast, it was so good to see everyone! It was hard explaining to Scott how I fit in with this group of people, though. I was the only public school girl in the mix, and was only friends with everyone because I had gone to preschool with Lauren, and we had been randomly running into each other ever since, keeping the friendship alive! The funniest part about the wedding was that when Lauren first introduced me to Karen (the bride), we HATED each other! I guess it's because we both have strong personalities... who knows! But, I'm so glad that quickly changed, and am grateful for the opportunity Lauren gave me to enter in her social circle and make friends I will cherish forever!
The Longhorns and their Ladies ;-)

The weekend flew by, and after church and a trip to the park, we were back on the road, ready to face whatever the next month had in store for us...

Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous

October was a pretty crazy month! We went out of town almost every weekend...and driving long hours is not what I want to spend my too-short weekends doing, normally, but these trips were pretty fun! One weekend we went to Concordia Lutheran High School's annual dinner auction in The Woodlands. It was fun to kinda pamper myself in preparation! Chrysta spent an hour on my hair making it curly, then I went to see my gal Carrie at the Benefit counter at Macy's (the only makeup I wear...on days when I actually put makeup on, which is usually pretty few and far between!) The only problem with getting all dolled up beforehand was the fact that I had to stay awake for the entire trip! I usually fall asleep instantly in the car, so that was difficult for me!
Scott and I all Fancylike :-)

The auction itself was pretty cool. We got to sit at the Concordia University table thanks to Scott's dad, and it was really fun to spend the evening with his parents, brother, new sister-in-law, and close friends. I bid on several items in the silent auction, although I got outbid on most of them! The live auction was CRAZY! I bid on the longhorn steer (only after double -checking to make sure that someone else bid too, so I wouldn't have to pay $1500...), but the amount of money these parents were willing to pay to sit in the front row at graduation was UNBELIEVABLE!!! After that, there was a band and dancing...the best part of the whole auction, although most people left as soon as the live auction was over. Nights like that are always a blast, but I'm kinda glad they're few and far between...

I absolutely adore Scott and Jodi! I wish they lived closer, so we could hang out more often!

OU Still Sucks!

So this year, I got to go to the Red River Rivalry for the very first time! I was THRILLED to finally get to go, until that morning rolled around, and I was up on a Saturday before I am usually up during the week! However, after a quality breakfast of corn dogs and beer, I was ready to go!
The cows were out in full force, and you could have your picture taken with either the UT cow or the OU cow... The lady who took our picture also took a picture with her own camera to be hung up in the store, so our picture could be hanging in a Chick-Fil-A somewhere...
I don't know if it was the heat, the zebras, the lack of good football, or the fact that the game went on FOREVER, but I was less than impressed. But, hey, a W is still a W, right?! After the game we wandered the fair for awhile, but I was pretty much just ready to go home and SIT (since you don't do that AT ALL during a huge rivalry football game)! To top off my disappointment, we got a funnel cake, which didn't even cover the whole plate! What has happened to the fair?!?! The funnel cakes used to be impossible to eat yourself without being so full you were sick, and we were still hungry after ours! We somehow managed to weasel our way into the DART line, and make it out of the fair in a reasonable amount of time. Hopefully next year will be a more pleasant experience, overall!
Scott and I with my Parents at the Post-Game Celebration Dinner
The Longhorns were actually icing from our delicious cupcakes from Sprinkles.
(I do have to say, that is one fantabulous store! It only sells cupcakes! Why didn't I think of that?!)

Happy Birthday To You....

We took the kids down to Dripping Springs to surprise Regan for her big day! We had a blast eating lasagna, singing karaoke, and just hanging out with the cousins!

Partyin' With the Cousins
The cake was ADORABLE!!!

Then it was Grandma Lentz's birthday! Scott and I went over to her house for dinner (I don't know why she had to cook her own birthday dinner...that's my one rule - I don't cook on my birthday!). We were joined by Scott's mom, dad, uncle, and two aunts. It was the first time all four of Elizabeth's kids had been together in a long was a very touching moment!
Proud Birthday Mom with her children
Wine + Cake + Ice Cream = Perfect Birthday Meal

September was a fun month for birthdays!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Hook 'Em Horns!

It's FINALLY football season! We decided to take the kids to the season opener this year, since Rice was not on our schedule. We had a BLAST! Here are some pictures from the game:
It's always nice to get to hang out with Mark before the game at the Alumni Center. This year, we enjoyed watching him from the stands with binoculars as well! :)

Kennedy watched in awe as the cheerleaders performed during the pre-game pep rally in the alumni center. We had met one of them right beforehand, so she focused her attention on Kenny for much of the pep rally. Boy, did that make her feel special!

Kaitlin and I used Kennedy's pom-poms for new hairdos. Hers actually looked really cute...mine, not so much! They were returned to Kennedy's hands immediately after taking this picture.
The most bizarre part of the game: right in front of us sat four friends and dormmates of Scott's from his freshman year in Dobie! What an awesome unexpected reunion!

Posing after a long day, and another Longhorn victory!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Back To School

The first week of school is over and I survived! It actually was a pretty good week, much better than I expected. I really like my colleagues, and the kids are mostly sweet...although there are always those few you can tell from the get-go, they're gonna put you to the test! My first week was planned and my classroom was actually put together BEFORE the kids arrived (except for a tiny stack of papers on my desk that needed to be filed). I still stayed late every day last week...there's always so much to do at the beginning of the year. I'm going to miss my colleagues at FCE, but I'm so excited to embark on this new adventure. I've only been there a week, but like they say...You just can't hide C.D. pride!!!

The best thing about school starting, however....ONE WEEK TIL KICKOFF! :) HOOK 'EM!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Pool Party!

Scott and I decided to take the girls to my parents house in Dallas last weekend, as a kind of final "mini-vacation" before school starts. (Harrison was in Michigan with his Grandma...) We had a BLAST! My parents had company over for dinner Friday night, and afterwards we ended up in a boys vs. girls basketball game. Playing basketball barefoot in the dark wasn't our smartest idea, but it sure was fun!!! (Especially since the girls won, although it was totally rigged!) Saturday was a day of shopping, swimming, and sun. The girls and I got a new back-to-school wardrobe (THANKS MOM!) and we made Build-a-Bear creations for all three kids, before spending the entire afternoon in the pool. Below are some of the pictures Dad took:

Kaitlin "surfing"

Daddy's Little Mermaid

She said her tan was "fading," but she's WAY darker than I am!

Spinning around, getting really dizzy!

She has become quite a fish this summer!


Monday, July 20, 2009

Scott's 40th Birthday Shindig

Our whirlwind summer of events is almost over!  For a few weeks there, it was REALLY crazy!  Wedding, honeymoon, Fourth of July, then SURPRISE!  Scott turned 40, and I threw him a party!  It's nice to finally relax this summer!  On the night of his actual birthday, Kaitlin and I made cupcakes, then we went to Hula Hut for dinner.  It was a great night spent with family, the kids got him some really cool gifts, and he was almost convinced that was all we were doing to celebrate...

Then came the fun part...Saturday night surprise party!  I had invited our parents and some of our dearest friends over for a party in the backyard complete with catered BBQ.  He figured I had something up my sleeve, but neither of us expected how much fun it would turn out to be!

Scott and his Birthday Cake

The first surprise of the night was the cake.  My mom said she was making several Texas sheet cakes, but brought the cake above instead.  It was a replica of his groom's cake, because Mom felt sorry for him that he had only gotten the one bite I fed him.  What an awesome surprise... although we're STILL eating cake!!!

Mark and the kids with the rocket

Before the party, we split up into "guy car" and "girl car" and did a little bonding shopping with the fam.  The girls brought home all kinds of purses and accessories, and the guys brought home a 7 foot rocket.  Little did we know how much of a hit it would be at the party!  Watching Mark and the kids try to figure out how to work the rocket was hysterical!  (Kaitlin finally decided to read the instructions...) The launch was a new set of laughs, because it wouldn't go in the direction they wanted it insisted on landing in the overgrown field of weeds behind our house repeatedly!  Since boys never really outgrow their toys, I have a feeling we'll be seeing much more of the rocket...

The Longhorn Walker

Once we sent the kids upstairs, the last surprises of the night were revealed... it was time for Scott to realize that it was a "gag-gifts only" party!  He received some classics: a beer disguised as Geritol, M&Ms disguised as Viagra, brain teaser books, sippie cups, a remote with oversized buttons, and la pièce de résistance...the longhorn walker. 

Overall, the party was a huge success, and I think everyone had a great time...I know we did!  Scott had a fantastic birthday, and I've had a lot of fun coming up with new, exciting recipes for all the leftover barbecue we have! :)

Friday, July 10, 2009

"I Left my Heart in San Francisco"

On the plane: San Francisco, Here We Come!  

We had a fabulous honeymoon!  Ok, so maybe it was less of what people consider to be a honeymoon, and more of a vacation...but we had a blast and enjoyed each other's company, so I think that's what's important!  San Francisco was a beautiful city, and the weather was AMAZING!
Drinking a Milkshake at an old 50's Diner

Monday, we got our rental car (BRAND NEW Ford Mustang was awesome!) and headed to the hotel.  My parents booked the hotel for us, and I think Scott got a little nervous once he noticed it's location: it was a shopper's paradise!  There were two Macy's!!!  Lucky for him, I didn't spend all of our money in department stores.  After wandering around Union Square for awhile, we decided to head to Chinatown for dinner and cheap souvenirs.  We were kinda disappointed in the Chinese food, since it WAS Chinatown, but maybe we just didn't pick the right restaurant.  
Muir Woods: I was attempting to smile even though my teeth were chattering!

Tuesday, we took the drive up to Muir Woods to look at the redwood forests.  It was a rather chilly morning, but we were determined to take full advantage of the convertible.  So, we put the top down, put the heat on full blast, and headed on our way!  After our coldest weather in the 50s that morning, we toured the little town of Sausalito with our warmest weather in the 70s.  That night, we saw Wicked!, my favorite Broadway play.
Lunch at the CIA in Napa Valley
Beringer Vineyard

Wednesday was wine day!  We tasted our way through a bunch of wineries around St. Helena in Napa Valley.  We went to the CIA for lunch, and after an interesting (and not very appetizing) array of frois groi, anchovies, and pate for lunch...the restaurant completely redeemed themselves with a mouth-watering chocolate lava cake:

After watching us attempt this picture multiple times, a very nice stranger offered to take this shot for us.
On Pier 39 Looking out over Alcatraz.

Thursday, we spent the day wandering around the sites of town we hadn't seen yet, such as Fisherman's Wharf.  We had a great time watching sea lions, eating fish straight from the market, and just wandering around.
Toasting at The Stinking Rose

Thursday night was a special treat, because my roommate for two years in college met up with us and took us out to dinner.  The restaurant was called The Stinking Rose, because everything there was made with garlic.  Scott was a little bit skeptical at first I think, but it actually was one of the best meals we had on our trip.  After dinner, we headed to Beach Blanket Babylon (the longest running show in San Fran)... a musical review/comedy/political act which was hysterical!  
At Alcatraz, with a view of the city

Hangin' out on a cable car

Friday was our last day in San Francisco, so we went to Alcatraz.  It was very interesting, although now it's a bird sanctuary, so it smelled HORRIBLE!  Then we headed back to Texas and the heat and spent the Fourth with my parents and grandparents in San Marcos.  I enjoyed the fantasy life for a week, but it's also nice to get back to normal when it's all said and done.

In San Francisco, there's chocolates for ALL weddings! :)