Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 in Review - Last Six Months


I taught summer school.

Both boys wanted super short hair.

I renewed my interest in couponing.


School started. Hudson started preschool, Evan is in 2nd grade, and I teach junior high.

I ran my second marathon, but apparently did not take any photos. Bummer.


My baby turned four, and we all got very sick.


Evan turned seven.

A smurf and a puppy smurf. Don't ask.


I got to see Hudson at his Thanksgiving Feast.

Evan won several first trimester awards for academics and sport.

Outdoor soccer wrapped up. Now we move to indoor soccer.

Eric turned 43.


I made bread.

Christmas was great.

We lost our beloved Mac T.

It's been a great year. I am excited to see what lies ahead in 2012.

2011 in Review - First Six Months

2011 has been a pretty great year. There is only one year in my life that I can look back and say, "Thank goodness that year is over." That was the year my dad died and Eric got kidney cancer. So much other bad stuff happened that year as well, that I was happy to put it to rest.

For the most part, though, I can recognize that each year comes with ups and downs. This year was no exception. Good and bad. Up and down. Weak and strong. Here are some memories:


Hudson spent a good deal of time being treated for asthma.

The kids and I spent time participating in races.

We spent a lot of time as a family playing games and going on bike rides.


Evan and I had fun dressing up each day for Catholic Schools Week.

I turned 36, and my class threw me a surprise birthday party!

More bike riding. We spent a lot of time teaching the kids biking etiquette.


We went to DISNEYLAND!!!


Evan, the track star.

I actually placed in a few races this spring!

We spent a few days during Easter Vacation at Monterey. R&R...running and riding.


Eric, in red, finished his first bike event! We were so proud of him!

I completed my first half marathon. At the finish line with Sally, an awesome teacher at my school.

My mom enjoyed her retirement party.

We found a chicken living and laying eggs on our back patio.

I participated in my first bike ride. It was a memorial ride for a girl from Chowchilla who died during the California Classic when her bike crashed.


My sister got married.

One of the best family shots we've ever taken.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Cowboy and Errands

I made an appointment today for Hudson to have his picture taken in my mom's Hopalong Cassidy cowboy suit. My mom had her picture taken in the suit back in the late 40's or early 50's. Then me, then my sister, then my sister's oldest son, then her youngest son, then my oldest son, and now my youngest son.

I was terrified that I had waited too long to get this done, and the suit wouldn't fit. My mom might have disowned me if that had happened.

I even ironed the little suit! Gotta admit, clothes made back then are of high quality. The little suit still looks great.

The suit.

Hudson was excited about having his picture taken last night. Then he saw the suit and refused to wear it.

I had a little talk with him about how there was no room for negotiation in this matter. He totally understood and put on the suit. Hmmph. Yeah right! We had to bribe him with a smoothie. Don't judge.

Hudson did a great job having his photo taken. They came out great. And yes, we got him a smoothie.

We ran a few errands including buying replacement boards at Lowe's for our fence that runs along the canal. People are always kicking out the boards and crawling through our fence to get to the street. Super rude. I can't even tell you how many boards Eric has replaced.

Hudson liked riding on the blue cart with the boards.

We also bought new rugs for both bathrooms. That was a much needed purchase. Eric made a solo trip to Costco, because I couldn't bear to go there. I took the kids to get allergy shots. Then I dropped them off at home and headed to Vons. I think I bought out the store. We were slightly low on groceries.

This ought to get us through a week. I hope.

This little face was rather attached to me today. Lots of hugs from him at random times.

I also watched a movie on Netflix. No Strings Attached with Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher. I liked it. Fluffy chick flick.

Just a random kind of day.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas Through the Years

I was reminiscing last night about where we are as a family and how fast my boys have grown up. That led to looking at old photos. They make me laugh.

2011 ages 7 and 4

2010 ages 6 and 3

2009 ages 5 and 2

2008 ages 4 and 1

I can't upload 2007. I'll work on it and add it in later if possible.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


If I had gotten my rear in gear and taken the time to create a Christmas card, here are some photos that would have been good to use. Granted...they were taken on Christmas Eve. They would have been a bit late for a Christmas card, but they are cute just the same.

Sometimes they actually like each other.

Sometimes they even love each other.

Close up hug.

Sometimes they are buddies...

..and best pals.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Ho Hum

Nothing overly exciting to report today.

We are sad about Mac T. It's going to be hard to get used to not seeing his fluffy brown body roaming through the house. His name was the first one Evan called for when we got home this afternoon. It's habit.

I had to go to work for a bit this morning. I had the boys pack a bag with any and every toy they wanted to play with at school. Basketballs and remote control cars are fun on an empty blacktop.

I got my work done, we ate and played at McDonald's, and then came home.

I got dressed for running, and the boys grabbed their bikes. I ran. They rode. We went to a neighborhood over, and I let them play on a playground park. It's always fun to play on new playground sets. We need to scout various neighborhoods looking for more of them!

Hudson did okay riding while I ran. Evan was great. He's an old pro at slowing at small intersections, yelling "clear," and pedaling across. I know that Hudson is safe if he stays close behind his brother.

I took a break on a bench while the kids played. It's kind of nice to break a run into two parts! I think I ran faster on the trip home.

Evan packed a backpack with a soccer ball and a nerf football. Then his brother refused to play with him. Hudson was only interested in the playground equipment. Evan practiced some soccer footwork.

I tried to get a picture of Hudson. Then my phone died. It's not holding a charge like it used to. Not sure what to do about that. That meant I had no lifeline and no music on the way home. I did fine with no music, and we didn't have any incidents requiring me to dial 911. Phew.

We ran/rode home, ate dinner, and now the kids are in bed before 8 p.m. That's the first time that has happened in several days. They NEED a decent night's sleep. Evan's been okay, but Hudson has been a pain. He's been argumentative, nasty and sullen. Fun times. Hopefully sleep will help this problem.

See? Just a ho hum kind of day.

Mac T - You Will Be Missed

Last night our beloved dog, Mac T, passed away. He was born on April 12, 1999 and passed away on Dec. 26, 2011.

He was Eric's first baby and has been with him longer than any of us. Bandit joined them shortly thereafter.

Mac T got his name because he literally rolled over anything in his way, like a Mack Truck. Hence...Mac T.

I called him Mackie Boo.

Mac was the dog that protected all of us. He spent his days patrolling his backyard, making sure anyone walking along the canal outside his fence knew not to mess with him! He would also check on the boys each night after they were safely asleep.

Mac has never been the snuggliest of dogs, but when Eric (or any of us) was sick, Mac was always right by his side. He was a big old fluff ball of love.

We are going to miss Mac so much.

I think it is a blessing that Harry (our new dachshund) is now in our lives. It gives Bandit someone to be with during the day when we are gone. I can only imagine how upset and confused Bandit would have been to lose his brother and be alone.

Mackie was such a brave little dog at the end. I know he is no longer hurting.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas - One Day After

We had a great Christmas.

Take a look:

Santa came down the chimney at about 11:30. He leaves three presents...just like the three presents that Baby Jesus received. Except our kids usually don't get gold, frankincense or myrrh. Oh, and Santa doesn't wrap. He's got better things to do than deal with wrapping paper and tape.

This year Santa was practical. Hudson got a basketball, a blanket and a Cars race track/car holder thing.

Evan got a basketball, an Angry Birds pillow, and a DS game.

We bought them a variety of things from clothes to pj's to books to a few toys.

They seemed to enjoy Christmas morning:

What a mess.

Christmas Eve with my family. Christmas Day with Eric's family. Good times everywhere.

We relaxed this morning and then went to a late afternoon soccer practice for Evan. I ran laps around the soccer field. Hudson complained that no one would play with him. Eric played on Evan's DS.

We had yummy Five Guys hamburgers for dinner. Note to self: never settle again for anything less than a Five Guys or Habit hamburger. And don't forget to order Cajun Style fries. Tonight's dinner was awesome on a stick.

And finally, I can't claim to have had the utmost Christmas spirit this year, but I WON'T be taking my decorations down for at least a week. Not to get all religious, but Christmas just started! Gotta hang onto the feeling for a while longer.