Wednesday, September 29, 2010


It was just one of those days.  It had to be to explain what happened to me when I went to get the salt the other night ...

That's right.  I was a"salt"ed.  Sadly, Dean said it had happened to him earlier in the week.  Even sadder ... I stopped him when he appeared with the vacuum to clean up the mess.  Because it was absolutely blogworthy.

Apparently it is a sickness.  Perhaps it should be called "blogworthyitis".  And, I've definitely got it!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Game Day ... Finally!

You have heard me lament (over and over) about Torrey's ankle injury.  And, if you haven't ... welcome to the blog!  Please know that I brought up her injury again and again because it was horrible for her to have to sit on the bench during games.  She desperately wanted to be playing on the court!

Well, Thursday was finally the day ... game day!  And, she was back in the rotation.  And, since it was an away game I was given permission to take pictures

Back in and ready to go.  She said at first she was a little nervous because it had been so long ... but it didn't take her long to get into the "swing" of things.  (Sometimes I crack myself up!)

Ready for the ball ... and she made it over!  We weren't surprised though ... luckily she didn't get her volleyball skills from me ... which means she can play!

Torrey and her friend, Susie, waiting for their side to serve.  I'm not sure why they did this, but they did it during every serve.

Our cute #8 waiting to play.  And, you must know she was ...

THRILLED to be back on the court!

The Eagles did not pull out a win, however, for us, the victory was in seeing Torrey back on the court and doing something she really enjoys!  

Thursday, September 16, 2010

It Was the Worst Day Ever

Yesterday.  I will not miss you.  

Let's start at the very beginning, shall we.  There was a stomach bug going around Kindergarten.  A very FAST moving stomach bug.  Need I say more?

I had one looking sickly for much of the day.  Another one with a very sore throat.  And a third that was looking healthy for most of the day.

Let me stop here and say that somewhere in the middle of the day I thought I had better get my flu shot.  

Let me continue by saying I may have been a day late.  Dern.

Anyways, as we walked in from the playground one friend from another kinder class started to throw up AS MY CLASS WALKED BY.  Do I need to say that it caused a bit of a chain reaction?

Well, it did.  

And, in the words of one of my friends, "THAT was disgusting!"

And it was and that is all I am going to say about the worst day ever.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

What Are You Reading?

This week I have read or am in the middle of reading some books that have caused me to go "hmmmm".  And, I love that.  Because when I read something I want it to linger with me for far longer than the time it takes me to actually read it.

I read this book to my class ... and I know I caused them to think I was a bit crazy when I started to cry.  It is the story of a Masai tribe in Kenya who hears of the attacks on our country on September 11th.  To the Masai, the cow "is life".  They asked a diplomat from the American embassy to come and talk to their elders.  When he got there he was shocked to find that this wasn't an ordinary meeting ... it was a celebration.  The Masai tribe told the diplomat how sad they were for what happened to our country and they just wanted him to know they were sorry.  They then played the "Star Spangled Banner" and when the diplomat wept so did the tribe.  They then gave 14 cows to our country.  Their best.  Today in the middle of the village is a pen with our country's cows ... which now number 35.

The Masai people are known as mighty and fierce warriors, however they are quick to show kindness and compassion to help right a wrong.  May we all be like the Masai people ... ready to give our best when we see someone in need.

(Warning ... this book WILL make you cry!)

On the morning of May 22, 2008 we woke to the terrible news that Maria Sue Chapman had been killed in a terrible accident.  I wept.  For a stranger girl.  I could not imagine the pain this sweet family has endured.  They have chosen to allow God to be glorified ... and He has.   

I have woken up in the middle of the night with the Chapman children's names on my heart.  God is like that ... when we need Him most He calls an army to surround us.  Maria would have started Kindergarten that next year and I carry her with me each day ... because I don't know how many days my littles have ... I just want to make sure each one counts for Jesus.

I read this book in half a day.  I.  Could.  Not.  Put.  It.  Down.  

Warning ... this book WILL make you cry!

And, finally, I am rereading Book one in The Zion Chronicles series.  Israel is on the verge of becoming a state.  The scrolls have been discovered after being hidden for 2,000 years (coincidence?  I don't think so!)  Great Britain is about to pull out of Israel leaving the Grand Mufti in charge.  Oh, and there has been a lock down on the Old City.  

I have been to Israel (twice!).  My parents are currently there.  The names of the places aren't just faraway spots to me ... they are real and I can picture them in my head.  Sadly, the struggle that is occurring for Israel in the book continues today.  Happily, we know the ultimate ending.  Oh Glorious Day!

And, there you have it ... what are you reading?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

It is Tuesday

And I am glad ... because it could be Monday!

Seriously ... I'm glad for many reasons.  Let's see ...

** Torrey is home from her Freshman retreat.  She loved it.  She had fun.  She protected her ankle at all costs.  And you thought I was done talking about the ankle.  Not yet.  Aren't you lucky?!

** Picture day.  One of my littles informed me that "yesterday the picture lady picked up a comb and started combing a girl's hair and combed out ALL OF HER CURLS!  And, today I have curls AND I DON'T WANT HER TO COMB OUT ALL OF MY CURLS!"  Just so you know, I first heard this at 7:50 this morning ... and I kept hearing it until picture time at 12:15.  The woman must have thought I had some nerve to tell her to NOT comb any of my kiddos hair ... but at that point I was hearing it from ALL of them.  Oh picture day ... I do not like you.

** Pedicure.  On a Tuesday night.  Need I say more?  Um, yes ... hot rocks.  Oh how I love.

** Pumpkin Spice Lattes.  From Starbucks of course.

** Dean's new glasses.  They just make me smile.  He just makes me smile.

** The arrival of my cousin's baby.  Was hoping she would name her Tracy, but I must admit I love the name she picked out even better.  (Updated to say that her name is Tymbor.  Don't you love?!)

** The arrival of our great nephew, Callen.  He is yummy ... and every picture I see of him just makes me smile.

Happy Tuesday ... it has been a good one around here!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Reason Number 782

And, here is reason number 782 why I teach ... I got this email from a parent last night ...

R (who is big sister): C do you like your teacher?

C (who is in my class): Huh?  What are you saying?

R:  Do you "like" her ... you know do you like your teacher?

C:  Duh, R that's a silly question.  I love her!

Sweet little thing just moved to the lead as Valedictorian of my class!  I am blessed (again!) with a sweet class of littles who love me ... and, as a bonus they think I can sing!

Happy Monday!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

I Can See Clearly Now

After weeks of squinting and blurry vision, Dean finally went to the eye doctor.  And, guess who needed glasses?  Mostly for reading and the computer, but because of astigmatism he has progressive lenses.  Yup, bifocals.

Torrey and I were happy to welcome him to the "Four-Eyed Club" ... I've been a proud member since I was 4 and Torrey has been a member since she was 6.

And, we must add, he is quite cute in his glasses ... don't you agree?!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

We Will Not Forget

September 11th.

In an instant you are back there.  On that day.  Where you were when you first heard.  Where you were when you first comprehended what was happening in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington DC.  And for me, like most people, comprehending came hours after I heard about the attacks on our country.

Dean and I spent our dating years and first year of marriage across the river from New York City.  Seeing the World Trade Center towers was not unusual for us.  They were a part of New York.  They were the New York skyline.

New York City (around 1991)

If you had told me then that those majestic buildings could be brought to the ground by a terrorist attack, I would have called you crazy.  And, if you told me it would happen in a matter of minutes I would have thought you were a lunatic.

And, yet, on a beautiful September day in 2001, we watched with horror as those buildings crumbled to the ground.  And, in the beginning we feared they would take our country with them.

That day, I was at Torrey's school for her teddy bear picnic.  She was 5.  Her Kindergarten year had just begun ... and in an instant everything we knew as adults had changed.  And for the first time I feared for Torrey's future ... would she live in a country that would know peace?  Would there be more attacks?  How many more September 11th's would there be?  Would we be able to keep her safe?

But, for our girl, on that day, it was all about the bear.  She laughed and giggled as she ate a picnic lunch with her friends.  Not knowing the sadness that was enveloping our country at that moment.  And, as a mom I prayed that this would be how she would be able to live her life ... free to be joyful.  Free to be safe.

As the week wore on, the stories of survivors and victims were told.  We heard of strangers who gave up their lives for others ... they rushed a cockpit of a plane to keep strangers safe on the ground, they stayed behind with strangers who couldn't make it down the stairs, and they ran up the stairs to rescue strangers as the buildings crumbled around them.  These stories became our country's battle cry.  They rallied us to not let 2,996 people die in vain.  We should not let September 11th be about a small group of terrorists, but rather about a large group of heroes who lived John 15:13.  Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

We have seen 9 September 11th's come and go since that day.  We have continued to live in a land that knows peace ... because although they have tried, no terrorist has attacked our country since that terrible day.  Sweet Torrey, like her friends, has laughed and lived a life that is joyful.  She has been safe.  She has grown into a thoughtful girl who cares about others.  She will change the world one day.

Because she is part of a generation who learned early the power of hate.  Her generation also learned on that fateful September day that love truly conquers all ... and given the choice, I daresay they will choose love any day.  Especially September 11th.

Monday, September 6, 2010

"Labor" Day

Labor Day marks the end of summer.  And no one in the world rejoices at the end of summer like a Houstonian.  Because our summers are just plain hot.  If you don't believe me, please come and visit us in August.  You will change your tune.  And, never make that mistake again!

We went up to Linda and Paul's for one last summer cook out.  Unfortunately the rain joined us.  Fortunately we didn't really care.

We started by meeting Linda and Paul's newest pet ...

Jessica PROMISED me he was a "good" spider.  She threw a leaf in its web to see what he would do ... he crawled right to the leaf (very very fast) and worked and worked to get that leaf out.  He was clearly not happy ... I could have sworn I heard him swear.  Here's hoping he finds a new home before next summer!

We loved seeing the kids ... because they are just yummy.

Can't tell from this view?  Read on ... you will agree with me!

Little Miss talked her (great) Uncle into playing dress up ... trust me it didn't take much arm twisting.  She has the sweetest disposition!

After watching a little You Tube, checking out the house that is being built next door, drinking some coffee and eating some homemade pecan pie, some of the brave went swimming ...

You-Know-Who was the first one in!  While she and Paul were playing football over the bridge, this was going on in the shallow end ...

And Little Miss impressed us with her jumping in skills!  I predict she will be a fish next summer!

And, last, but not least, we had a special visit from ...

... the bird lady from Alcatraz!  Nobody accessorizes a bathing suit like Ellie!  

It was another fun day at Linda and Paul's ... so grateful for the day off from work, to be able to just enjoy family, to laugh and to realize what is really important!

Das Boot

Torrey sprained her ankle ... minutes before her first volleyball game of the season.  Dean and I both were there and we didn't see what happened until she was hobbling off the court.  Weird.

We have now lived with her injury for two weeks.  Two weeks.  I know, both of my loyal blog readers have lived with her injury for two weeks too ... I'm sure you are sick and tired of hearing about it.  Because, back in the day, when you sprained your ankle you wrapped it with an ace bandage and didn't have to participate in PE.  (I'm sure you are thinking that this is where I admit to wearing an ace bandage without spraining my ankle ... not today peeps.  Not today.)

Well, today kids, this is your ace bandage ...

And, that is why we call it "das boot".  And why we are thrilled to say goodbye to it tomorrow.  We will not miss you!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Saturday Smile

I thought I would just go to my pictures and see if there was anything in there that just made me happy.  I knew I would not be disappointed.  Here is Torrey with her sweet cousin Ellie.  Scrumptious.  The both of them.  What is making you smile this Saturday?

Friday, September 3, 2010

She's a Big Girl Now

She's in High School now.  My girl.  And, I don't know how that happened.  I blinked and there she was.  Seriously.  Weren't we just buying expensive clothes for dolls with names like Felicity and Samantha?  

Well, here she is.  Loving it.  And, High School agrees with Torrey Townsend.  Completely.  She spends her nights doing mountains of homework ... with a smile on her face.  She spends her afternoons practicing for volleyball (or, like recently, in the trainers room with a sprained ankle) ... with a smile on her face.  She heads off to school each morning utterly exhausted .... but, with a smile on her face.

We don't know what the future completely holds for Torrey ... for forever she has wanted to be a vet and attend Texas A&M ... suddenly we are thinking about the University of Texas or Baylor and perhaps a career as a pediatrician.  She has time.  And, more importantly, Dean and I have time.  

But, for now, enjoy these pictures of our biggest blessing on her first day of High School.  

Oh, Torrey, God has something wonderful planned for you.  Trust Him completely.  He will never waver.  He will never fail.  He will always keep His promises.  Always.  You delight your Dad and I ... your spirit is sweet and your words are gentle, you are a faithful friend, you are bold in your faith, you are confident in yourself, you are trusting and trustworthy.  You know who you are Tor, but, more importantly you know Whose you are.  We pray that you will always allow God to direct your steps ... He will never let you down.  I promise.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

The Big D

Yesterday Dean had lunch with the Dallas Cowboys.  You read that correctly.  And, it was THE Dallas Cowboys.  I made him bring a camera with him.  You are welcome.

The Dallas Cowboys hosted a luncheon yesterday in honor of Happy Hill Farm Academy and since Staples is a supporter (of both the Cowboys and Happy Hill Farm), they were given a table.  And, Dean was given a ticket ... to table 134.  Along with his work friends, Timmy Newsome was also at his table ... he was a player in the 80's.

Dean said there were a few notable people there ... Roger Staubach being one.  I "ooohed" and asked him if he got a picture with him.  Um, that would be a no.  Table 134 ... remember?

Dean, Brad and Adam did score a picture with Barry Switzer ... don't worry I didn't know who he was either.  He coached the Cowboys from 94-97 and even won a Super Bowl.  I was impressed with their picture taking tactics ... especially when it involved tricking Barry into thinking he knew them.  All for the blog folks.  All for the blog.

Dean may or may not have scored a touchdown.  If he was truly dedicated to the blog there would have been a video of a touchdown dance.  Maybe next year.  But, there may well not be a next time because ...

"somehow" those 3 found their way "accidentally" to Jerry Jones's private box.  Oh, yes they did.  The view from up there was phenomenal ... which is what should be expected from the owner of the team!  Evidently he has the PERFECT seat ... on the 50 yard line with a direct view of the jumbo screen when seated.  Oh, and there is a private elevator from his box directly to the field.

It's not every day you get to have lunch with the Dallas Cowboys ... so glad Dean got to go.  But, I just may be gladder that he brought a camera!