Our two child things (5 and 2) are currently in Hawaii, but we are a military family, and we live where the Army tells us. This blog is designed to keep us in touch with our family and the friends we have made along the way, to offer insight into our turbulent military lifestyle, and to share our experiences as we try out "homing school." So glad you stopped by!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

One Semester (Almost) Down

  • In just a few days, our first semester of homeschooling will be over. I started this project with more than a few reservations, but most of my concerns have been eased by now. This girl has made some major strides since August...both in school and out.
  • -She can read 3 and 4 letter words, and even short sentences!
  • -She can write her name legibly on her own (though she has decided her name is too long to write over and over again and wants to be known as Kate from now on).
  • She learned to set the table properly
  • She was "promoted" to the advanced ballet/tap class
  • She can now use scissors fairly well
  • She can identify numbers up to 20 and can count to 29 :P
  • She has memorized 10 Bible verses

She has really just blossomed this year and is doing fantastic in everything. So, as I said, most of my worries about homeschooling are gone, but there are two things I still mull over.

1. The baby: Right now we "do school" during his nap time. But he will be sleeping less, and we will be schooling more, and I just don't want to deprive him of attention.

2. Math: Yes, I am certain I am capable of teaching kindergarten-level math, but I just don't like numbers. It is not my passion, and it is certainly not my strength. So I can teach it, but I don't know if I can teach it with the same enthusiasm that I can other topics.

Concern #1 is definitely bigger than #2. What to do, what to do?

Monday, November 22, 2010

So the other day I was chatting with Scott online and told him how funny our daughter is. He asked me for examples, but I could only think of one story off the top of my head. Here it is:

After Halloween, the child thing acquired two very pretty princess dresses that had been marked down really low. She happened to be wearing one of them the other day when Grandmommy showed up to feed her horses, who live in the pasture behind our house. This girl LOVES to help with the horses, so she raced outside wearing her dress-up costume and everything.

She was only out there a minute or two before she astutely observed, "I think this dress is not a good thing to wear to feed the horses. I'm going to go change." So, she ran inside and emerged a few minutes later...wearing her other princess dress. He he he. And then she continued along with her business as usual.

Today I thought of another silly thing our girl did, so I figured I'd write about it for her Daddy. Alright here goes:

Once a week, we go to ballet class in the evenings, and on those days we usually either eat leftovers or pick something up on the way home for dinner. This week, the child thing requested Sonic (she likes it because I let her get a fruit slush for her drink), and I obliged. She wanted a corn dog kids meal with apple slices and caramel sauce for dipping...the apples, not the corn dog, of course. Just thought I'd clarify.

We get home, we sit down, we eat, then the baby holds up his cup and says, "ma! ma!" That means more, so I go to the kitchen to refill his sippy, and when I return, what in the world do you think is happening?

The child thing has removed her straw from her strawberry slush, has placed it into the little tub of caramel dip and is slurping it right up.

Oh my.

What do you do?

But really, deployments can be a very lonely time. Even if you're surrounded by good friends who know what you're going through, or with family who love and support you in any way they can, no one can replace your "other half." You can start to feel sad, lonely, incomplete, joyless. I'm so glad I have these two around to make me smile every single day.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Last Soccer Game

Time flies, and this little soccer player's season came to an end this weekend. Though she was never totally enthusiastic about soccer ("It makes me tiiiiiiiired"), she definitely improved throughout the season. Her last game, she got the ball three or four times and dribbled it toward her goal. And for her first couple of games, I don't think she touched the ball at all. Here is a clip of our little soccer girl and a message from her to Daddy! Oops...sideways...I don't know how to fix that. Sorry.

Saturday, November 6, 2010


So Thomas is learning to jump, and it is SO CUTE! He squats down, gathering all his strength, then lunges upward with all the might in that little body. But his feet don't leave the ground. Sometimes, though, he'll lift one of them up at the end of his lunge. He seems to think he's jumping, though, and is quite proud of himself. I, for one, hope he doesn't perfect the jump for a while, because that means I will get to fawn over his adorable baby jumps for longer. :)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Answer to my Question

Yes, there is something as cute as a baby wearing footie pajamas. And that is a baby wearing a cowboy hat. Love it!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

So at Home

For most of her life, she has lived in a townhouse on a military installation. She has had a small, bland backyard to play in. She has had a lackluster playground around the corner. She has had lots of other kids to play with. She has waited in line for her parents to show their ID cards to enter her own neighborhood. She has heard cadence calls in the morning, rifles at the gun range during the day, and cannons in the evening. She doesn't like or dislike living on an Army post; it's just what she knows.But I recently took her up to my grandparents' farm, I noticed a difference in her. Although she has never been a farm girl, she was completely at home in the country. She played contentedly on the front porch of the farm house, she clambered around on top of the rock piles, she climbed through the barbed wire fences like an old pro, she managed to get closer to a new calf than I knew was possible, she collected sticks from the pine trees and build a house for her dolls, and she was so happy and so free doing it all. In a suburban neighborhood, I would hardly let my kids get 10 feet away from me. But out in the country, with all that space, they have so much more freedom to explore. If she saw something she wanted to look at, she'd run across the pasture and check it out. Independently.

Right now we are actually looking in to buying an open lot so that when the time comes to settle down, we will have a place to do so, and we have both agreed we'd like to have a place with a little acreage. Seeing this little girl looking so free and so natural on the farm, I was reminded of the most important reason we would like to eventually move out of those townhouses and to a place with wide open spaces: our kids.

One Question

I don't have much to say tonight. Just a quick question: is there anything in the world as cute as a baby in footie pajamas?

Friday, October 8, 2010

Something My Kids Will Never Do (I Hope)

Mutton Busting. I don't think this was invented by a mother.

Mothers worry too much. True. You've got to let them be kids. Yes. But this? It's just that they're sooo little! Look at this little girl. Is she even in kindergarten?

To be fair, I have never been to a rodeo where I saw a child injured after falling off a sheep. I don't know if I have ever even seen one cry. They are tough. They are brave. They cowboyed up or something.

And I admit that I would hate to deny my child the opportunity to explore his or her interests. Because you don't want to squash their passions, you know. Maybe this little girl will grow up to be the first female professional bull rider. Probably not, as females seem to be too smart to participate in that sport. *ahem* But you never know...maybe that's her chance to make history.

I just hope that my kids are not passionate about mutton busting. Because if watching other kids tumble off the back of a sprinting sheep makes my heart stop, I can only imagine what watching my own kids would do to me.

This Ain't My First Rodeo...

...but it is their first rodeo! This week I joined forces with the grandparents to take the kiddos to their first rodeo. Definitely something you have to do while in Texas! By the way, it's not really cold here. That night was actually a perfectly pleasant evening, and then they turned on these HUGE fans in the arena, which must have decreased the temperature by 20 degrees. That's why we're wearing jackets.

Growing up, I visited that arena over and over, and I don't remember those fans, so they must be new. I figure someone recently spent millions of dollars on them, and they insisted on turning them on, even if it made the spectators less comfortable. "Dang it! We've got perfect weather tonight! Well, let's get our money's worth. We're using the fans anyway!"

Ok, back on track. I have fond memories of childhood rodeos, so I had high expectations for this one--the kids' first!

This little girl was mildly entertained by the rodeo events (and thrilled at the rodeo queens' entrance), but what she liked the best was this giant slide and the cotton candy.

Oh, look, you can see the giant fans in this picture. They could fight global warming with those things.

On to what I really wanted to say about this picture: the baby occasionally saw something in the arena that caught his eye, but mostly just wanted to climb around on the bleachers. And the fair was a complete flop for him. Every ride his sister got on, he pointed and reached and said: uhh uhh uhh uhh. Translation: Mommy, I'd like to go on that ride, please. Or something along those lines.

But every carnie denied him...too small.
It was a fun night, nevertheless. We only stayed halfway through the rodeo, though, because we were quickly approaching the point where it would not have been fun for us or anyone around us. Boredom, bedtime, too much sugar...who can blame them?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Army Wives and Stereotypes

"If the Army wanted me to have a wife, they would have issued me one." *Snicker* I've heard single soldiers say this over and over again, and though it does make me chuckle, it also reminds me of the stereotype people have of military spouses. And I used to believe this, too, so don't think I'm criticizing.

I used to think Army wives were expected to be submissive, patriotic baby machines with no personal career goals who were willing to keep their mouths shut and smile. This stereotype was furthered in my mind when, while in an Army Family class, the question, "What does the Army expect of you, as wives?" was answered by a fellow student like this: to sit there and be pretty.

Now I have a bit of an independent streak, and a bit of a feminist streak, so this got my blood pumpin'. I came home and told Scott that the Army had no right to expect anything out of me, and if they did, well, I just wouldn't do it...to prove a point.

But then he got his first assignment, and we moved to Georgia, and I met some of those submissive baby machines. And what do you know? Army wives certainly do not all fit into a box. I have met some who have children, and some who do not. I have met some who are stay-at-home-moms, and some who are lawyers. I know some who are quiet, and some who will speak their minds in an instant. I know some who love America with everything they have, and some who can barely speak the language.

There is one generalization I will make about military wives, however: they certainly are not submissive. They are strong, strong women. And I don't think this strength is "issued." When you love a soldier, you choose to be strong...for him, for your family, for other Army wives, for our country.

I said all that to say this: I am so blessed to have met so many strong women, and I am proud to be among them.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Friendship Bracelet

There are some days when I think my child things are going to drive me bonkers. But then there are days that they are so sweet they bring me to tears.

Case in point

Her: Mommy, I made a bracelet in Sunday School today.
Me: What a nice bracelet!
Her: It's for Thomas.
Me: That's very sweet, but are you sure you want to give it away?
Her: Yes, it's a friendship bracelet. The teacher said I should give it to my best friend. So it's for Thomas.
Me: sniff sniff sniff SOB sniff sniff

Science: What We're Learning

When I decided to give pre-k homeschool a shot this year, I knew I did not want to spend a ton of money. And you can drop A LOT of money on books and curriculums designed specifically for homeschoolers. A LOT! The only subject I bought a full curriculum for is reading (I had no clue how to go about teaching someone to read). Everything else, I'm just kinda winging it. For science, I am using this book called What Your Preschooler Needs to Know. It's certainly not a complete school curriculum, but it's working great for our purposes.

We read a chapter (which is really only a paragraph or two) once a week, and then read library books and do activities that correspond with that chapter throughout the week. Right now we're working on animals. We just finished learning about insects and spiders. After learning about them, we of course had to make our own out of pipe cleaners and egg cartons and go on an insect hunt in our backyard.

I know I'm supposed to be the teacher, but I'm learning new things, too. For instance: holding a giant grasshopper with your bare hands does not make a 4-year-old squeamish a bit. In fact, a 4-year-old may even think it's "so cute" and want to keep it as a pet! :)

Saturday, September 18, 2010


I'm so excited to announce that we're playing soccer now!! The first game was this weekend, and let me just say that preschooler soccer is SO cute! Especially when all the kids are wearing shorts that hang down way below their knees and soccer socks that could be used as tights they are so long.

So far, Katherine hasn't shown that super competitive spirit. In fact, she seems to think soccer games are more social than competitive. She's usually the kid chatting it up to all the other players as the ball rolls by. :) But at least she's not just standing in the middle of the field picking her nose or something. But, even if she were, it would just be part of the cuteness. :) She may not chase the ball, but she at least picks out another kid she wants to talk to and chases them! It's exercise all the same, right?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Off to a great start!

Two weeks of homeschooling down! And they have gone really well! I am having lots of fun being a teacher again, and apparently the child thing is enjoying being a student so much that she asks to do school on weekends, and some days she wants to do "double school."
This is where we have set up our school area. Lucky for us, the house we are in right now has this awesome built-in desk in the breakfast area. It gives us plenty of space to work and store our supplies. Our dining table is right in front of it, so we can spread out and work on projects there. Add a Clifford calendar and a cool tree, and you've got a school room! I have lots of plans for this tree, but so far we have only used it as a reward. We have been focusing on learning vowels, so anytime my pupil got a question right about a vowel, she got to attach a leaf or acorn to the tree.
And who knew how exciting that would be for a 4-year-old? But she really likes it. The first day of fall is in just a couple of weeks, so then we will start letting the leaves fall to the ground. I hope that will be just as much fun!
So far I am feeling very positive about our homeschooling experiment. At this point, I can definitely envision myself teaching my kid at home instead of sending her to a public school next year. It's only two weeks in, though, so I'm not going to commit to anything yet. :) I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

These Boots

Are these boots awesome, or what? The child thing's aunt welcomed her to Texas with a pair of cowgirl boots. Silvery, sparkly cowgirl boots, no less. And we have worn them EVERYWHERE! And we get compliments on them everywhere, too. Some adults have even asked if the store carries them in grown up sizes! Advice for anyone looking for a gift for a pre-school aged girl: get the silvery, sparkly cowgirl boots! :)

Saturday, August 28, 2010


Hmmm...it's August. That means I started this blog a year ago. Since then I have not always updated it regularly, and I have not made a million dollars off of advertising like I'm sure The Pioneer Woman does. Nevertheless, thanks a lot to those of you take a look at "Where the Child Things Are" every now and then. All 3 of you. :P

Settling In

Thank goodness, our move to Texas is over! Now that it's behind me and I'm settling in to our new house, I am so happy I made the choice to move. We finally have the chance to be a part of our relatives' daily lives and they are a part of ours. This weekend we got to attend a niece's first birthday party, which is SUCH a special event, and one that--as an Army family--we would kind of expect to miss. I am also finally getting my fix of certain food items that just aren't the same away from Texas: fajitas, kolaches, Blue Bell, brisket, hand-made tortillas, etc...
And we are so blessed to have the house that we do. My oh-so-generous relatives offered to let us live in a home they moved out of about 5 years ago but never put on the market. I may get so spoiled living here that I never want to go back to military housing again. This house has way more space than we are used to and is on a lot with a few acres, which we are loving! In fact, Scott, if you are reading this, our next place has got to have a little land! You can get a riding lawn mower!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Dealing with Deployment--Bedtime

Hallmark's recordable books are just PERFECT for military families! A friend gave one to us shortly before Scott left; what an awesome gift! So that he could still read a story before bed, Scott recorded himself reading the book to the kids, and they love it! In fact, one night, when I tucked the older child thing into bed, I forgot about her "Daddy book." After I went downstairs, I heard her in her bedroom reading it herself. She also says she wants Daddy to make her a new book for Christmas this year. Awwww... And it's good for the baby to hear Daddy's voice and to hear us talking about him when we read.
Highly recommend these books to any military family with small children!! I love that Scott can still be a part of the bedtime routine, even when he's on the other side of the world.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Dipping My Toes Into the Homeschooling Waters

By the time our oldest child thing starts kindergarten, we will be in Hawaii, which literally has the worst public school system in the country. Pretty much as soon as we got to Hawaii and learned a little about the schools, we started discussing our options. One option that (to my surprise) my husband brought up is homeschooling.

I have to admit, at first I didn't seriously consider it. "Why would I want to do that?" I asked. I mean, it does seem like a way out-there thing to do. But, the more stories I heard from kids in public schools and the more research I did on private schools (and their tuition), the more it seemed like a good choice.

So I am dipping my toes into the homeschooling waters. To see if I have the capabilities, endurance and patience to homeschool successfully, we are going to try out a preschool curriculum this year. I'm actually excited about it, and my mindset has shifted. Why wouldn't you want to do this? (Ok, there are actually quite a few good reasons not to, but...don't remind me). If you could provide your child with an educator who could design a curriculum specifically for that child--that allowed for in-depth exploration in areas of interest and reviewed areas of weakness until they were mastered, that didn't leave that child behind because his/her peers were ready to move on or expect that child to mindlessly fill out worksheets because other children needed remediation, that challenged the child to be way more than average--wouldn't you?

My answer is yes, so here we go! We are going to focus on phonics and reading this year, but also touch on art, science, history, Bible and math. And you may have noticed in my picture that we are including the essential-for-any-homeschooler My Little Pony Coloring Book.

If at the end of the year the child thing has learned and I have not gone insane, we may very well do it officially for kindergarten next year.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Child Things are in...

the Lone Star State! After months of considering it, I decided to move out of our place in Hawaii so that we could be closer to family during the deployment. I'm still not sure if it was the right decision. As with anything, there are upsides and downsides, but we are here, and we plan on enjoying our time in Texas. We are going to eat all the Mexican food and BBQ we can get, take pictures of the bluebonnets in the spring, and spend lots of time with the Texans we love.

There are a few things I am already NOT enjoying, however. For instance, I had forgotten how nasty it feels to have your jeans stuck to your legs because you are drenched in sweat from walking to your car. I will certainly miss the absolutely perfect weather and awesome scenery of Hawaii (oh, and the shave ice), but we'll be back there in a year. So I guess we've got the best of both worlds this way. :)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Just before the deployment, we made a family getaway to the island of Kauai. It is a BEAUTIFUL place! Even though we spent half of our vacation days shut up in our condo (because of a girl's nasty stomach bug, a baby's first fever, and a mommy's trip to the ER), we made the most of our healthy days. If you ever go to Kauai, do not miss the Na Pali Coast...stunning! I wish we could have taken a helicopter tour, but that would not have gone over well with a certain little girl.

We also loved the Waimea Canyon. It's not as big as the Grand Canyon, but it is pretty spectacular all the same. The trip was fun; I only wish we had been healthy so we could have seen more of this beautiful place.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Clever Birthday Boy

Child Thing #2 is one year old! And with his age comes wisdom...like how to work the baby locks on our cabinets. Tell me he doesn't know exactly what he's doing! Clever boy!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Dealing with Deployment--Slumber Party

Any military spouse will tell you that the first night of a deployment is the pits. I can't speak from experience, but I imagine it is hard on the military child, too.

So what do you do? How about a family slumber party! We decided to do this days before Daddy left and talked about it every now and then, hoping it would give at least a small positive spin on deployment day. It seemed to work; the child thing cried a little when we said goodbye, but as soon as we got back home, she asked if it was time for the slumber party yet.

When the time did come, we spread out our sleeping bags, popped some popcorn and watched a Tinkerbell movie. Exciting for her, staying up after bedtime and all. And me, well...at least I didn't have to crawl into that lonely, empty bed.

We will definitely keep this in mind for any future deployments (though if we don't have any more deployments, that would be ok, too!), and hopefully next time, we can include the baby in our slumber party also. I suppose we'll have to come up with something other than Tinkerbell if he joins in.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

When I Grow Up...

...I want to be an artist! This may just be a proud mother speaking, but I think she's got a shot! Look at the detail the elder child thing included in her latest drawing. Not that it NEEDS interpretation...but...well, it might need a little interpretation. Above is a picture of a girl and her friends at the park, which includes (see if you can pick these things out) a swing set, a tree, a sidewalk, a balloon, two kids on a see-saw, a slide, and a "fuzzy thing." Amazing, I tell you! ;)

Only a true artist could put her own creative spin on a formulaic, they-all-look-the-same VBS art project. It takes true artistic talent to turn a happy cactus friend reminding you that God cares for you into a grimacing, glaring outlaw being held at gunpoint by the sheriff. :P

Monday, June 28, 2010

365 Nights Alone

There is no feeling more dreadful than watching your husband board a bus that will take him to war. There is no sound more heart-wrenching than the quiver in his voice when he tells your children goodbye. And there are no tears that fall harder than those that you shed when you crawl into your empty bed on the first of 365 nights alone.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

I Can Say Hello

This video is horrible quality! Even so, maybe you can make out an adorable little four year old wearing a blue dress "singing" in her very first VBS choir performance. I use quotations because I don't think I saw her mouth move at all during the song, but at least she had the hand motions down pretty well. That's the important part, right?

Step, step, plop!

It has been almost 2 month since the younger child thing took his first steps, and I finally got a video of him walking. Although he took his first steps pretty early (around 10 months), he hasn't really made much progress until lately. He is finally starting to walk more often and take more steps in a row. His record is 7! He hasn't quite given up crawling yet; it is still his main mode of transportation.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Finally! Done with a quilt! I can't remember when I started this project, but it has been at least a year (though to give myself a break, a lot has happened in that year...like having a baby. And moving across an ocean).
I am so excited to have it done and hanging on the wall! As are all of my crafting attempts, this quilt is full of imperfections, but I am happy with it, nonetheless. :)
What a neat record of our lives and our homes this will be! The embroidery was done by the sewing master herself, Deborah (my mother-in-law), and reads: Home Sweet Army Home. She also embroidered the small stars with the names of all the Army posts we have lived: Ft. Benning, Ft. Riley, Ft. Gordon and Schofield Barracks.
I also love that I was able to make this quilt mostly from scraps so that it contains fabrics purchased in several of our home states.
Now I guess it's time to get on with finishing the baby quilt I made (I guess I should say "am making") for child thing #2. Any bets? Will I get it finished by his first birthday? We shall see...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Not Smarter Than a 3-year-old

There's nothing more humbling than realizing the small person whose shoes you tie and bottom you wipe knows more than yourself. Yesterday, child thing #1 asked me out of the blue, "Mommy, do you like abstract paintings?"

I was so busy searching my brain for the definition of abstract painting, I didn't even realize I should be wondering how in the world she knows what that is. I must have looked as confused as I felt because she soon took pity on me and explained.

"You know, Mommy, a painting that has colors and shapes, but not really a picture."


Saturday, February 13, 2010


Check off the bucket list: seeing whales in the wild. Awesome! As a Valentine's treat to each other, we took a whale watching cruise, and we certainly got to see some whales! Apparently humpbacks are not too fond of cold water, so in the winter they migrate from Alaska to Hawaii, where people like me get to fawn over them.

The child thing kept a sharp eye out, and it was only a few minutes before the sightings started! We spotted lots, but because we chose to sit at one of the few tables with glass windows (the boat was mostly open air) as it greatly reduced the likelihood of someone falling overboard, and because of all those other people who also wanted to see the whales, we didn't get a ton of great photos. But here's a really good one Scott took of a mama whale's tail and her baby right next to her:

And here's a shot of the top of a whale. I know in this photo, it looks pretty small, but that was definitely not the case! Our naturalist told us that when humpbacks are born, they already weigh about a ton! And the largest documented humpback whale was around 80 feet long! Wow!

Perhaps this is not the most traditional Valentine's Day outing, but, we had a great time, and what an awesome experience it was for all of us! And now I love whales! Almost as much as the turtles!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Best Friends

Can you think of any better way for a three-year-old to spend a warm afternoon than sitting outside with her best friend eating a fudgecicle? And I don't use the term "best friend" lightly.

Let's call this friend "Owie," shall we? Let me illustrate how much Child Thing #2 and Owie adore each other. Owie recently suggested an even trade to her mom. Owie's little sister could come live with me and Child Thing #2 could live with her so they could be sisters! And every day, without fail, I answer the question, "is today a school day?" because if it's not, we get to play with Owie. Sure, these two girls have spats over sharing toys and etc., but Owie's mother and I agree that they would forgive each other for anything.

But here's the best part: Yesterday, a certain three-year-old told me, "Emily Elizabeth and Clifford are best friends."

"That's right," I responded. "Who's your best friend?" I fully expected to hear "Owie, Owie, a million times Owie."

But instead, she pointed her plump little finger at me and shouted, "You! You! You! You!"

:D I just love being a mom!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Gettin' Around

Here's a little clip of the new crawler in our house. He's getting around pretty well these days!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Hawaii Tourist Review--Ko Olina Lagoons

The Lagoons at Ko Olina is our favorite beach to go to to swim and play. The entire thing is man-made, but don't let that bother you. This is an awesome beach, especially for kids. I know a 3-year-old who got knocked down by a big wave her first trip to the beach and has been leary of the ocean since then. But because the rock barriers protect this beach from the open ocean, it's almost like swimming in a pool, and even she will get in the water here. Plus, as I recently learned, there's some decent snorkeling along the rocks toward the back of the lagoon.

Here's what I know about the lagoons: there are 4 (pretty much)identical lagoons in a row. They are all beautiful, but we generally opt for lagoon #4 because it has the most parking. You can plop your beach chair down in the sand near the water, or claim a shady spot in the grassy area surrounding the lagoon. The only problem is the parking. There's not much, so it's best to arrive early (by 9 a.m. or so), especially on a weekend.

This place gets two thumbs up from me. It's all a family could want from a day at the beach (unless, of course, you are looking to surf or boogie board).

Christmas in Texas

What a wonderful Christmas we had this year! We got to take child thing #2 to Texas for the first time (and yes, we have begun the brainwashing process to turn him into a Texan, even if he can never claim to be a native). No matter where we go, Texas is always home, and it is always good to go back. The best part, of course, is spending time with our family and old friends, and saying goodbye to the people we love always makes me a bit heavy-hearted. But when this is waiting for me at the other side, it certainly makes it easier to leave that beloved Texas soil behind.