Thursday, April 30, 2009

Off like a herd of turtles to see Mickey

If you know Jerrod and I, you know that we don't do anything slowly...we hit the pavement running and don't stop. We had a Disney trip planned in the midst of all this house stuff and so we still had to prepare, pack and get mentally ready for a trip to Disneyworld for the kids.

I am definitely a little hesitant this time around. We are taking Teague and I don't know what to expect. He doesn't like strollers for longer than 5 minutes, lately has had the appetite of a baby turtle and very picky about his food, is loud and demanding...a totally normal almost 2 year old. Plus, we have a "swine flu" potential pandemic and I am feeling a little leery of traveling.

Jerrod got smart this time around after he realized that with potentially 8 bags of luggage and 6 family members- we just might not fit in our suburban on the way to the airport. My smart husband called a company that came to pick us up and take us to the airport. Let me tell you...awesome. I loved the fact that we didn't have to stress out about driving there, trying to find a parking space, dragging all the luggage and kiddos from the parking space to the check in, etc.

Things were going good until the kids starting asking us what we were going to eat for lunch. We didn't know if we had the time to stop and pick up something so Jerrod called to see the exact time our flight left...we knew it was some time around 1:00 p.m. We were leaving the neighborhood at 11:32 a.m. and had every intention of arriving on time to the airport until Jerrod got confirmation that our flight left at 12:05 p.m.- exactly 30 minutes later and we still needed an hour to arrive and unload. Luckily, he was able to get us on another flight at 3:30 p.m. so we stopped at Pappasito's for some tex-mex and good grub!!

The kids were chopping at the bit to get to Disneyworld. Bailey must have asked me 6 dozen times what time is was. She, Jackson and Emma were sitting a few rows behind us on the plane and she would use the man directly behind me to get my attention so she could ask. I know he was so annoyed, but he was a good sport the entire flight.
We finally got to Orlando, got checked into the hotel and made our way to dinner. Teague had not had a nap and things were starting to get hairy with him.

We will probaby hit Magic Kingdom and ride some rides. We have dinner reservations at the Crystal Palace at 5:10 p.m. and plan to take a lot of pictures with Tigger, Pooh, Piglet and Eeyore. Fun, fun!!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

New News

Jerrod and I have decided that we MIGHT sell our house. We have decided that we want a bigger back yard, but that means moving away from our awesome neighbors and our pool! We found out that there is a potential house going on the market a block away from us at the beginning of May and we have had a look. We have a few things to do at the house and then we will see what happens!!

In the meantime, I received an email from a realtor in Fredericksburg about a potential house. I had contacted
Bo Padgett about another house (actually Jerrod's uncle's house) in Fredericksburg and he kept in touch with us. His email had a link to a house he thought we might like if we hadn't made a decision on Jerrod's uncle's house. I clicked on that link and fell in love!!

I showed it to Jerrod and he automatically said that it was more than what we intended to pay....but he said it was a good looking house. We discussed how we intended to build a house on the lot where Jerrod's uncle's house is and the potential trouble that could be for us living in Sugar Land. We would definitely spend more than what this house would cost and the original house is a little small for our family of six! Score!

So we made plans to go to Fredericksburg to see the house after softball games and tball games Saturday morning. We couldn't get into the house until Sunday morning so we went to look at a few other houses and hung out around town. We ate our 2nd home- McDonald's-once we got into town and had some fun.
Can you guess who started all this?? You are right, Emma!!
After looking at the other homes, we headed to Fredericksurg Ice Cream Parlor on Main Street. Yummo!
After looking at the house a full 20 minutes, we FELL in LOVE with the house. Here's a picture of the house.
We put an offer on the house after seeing it the whole 20 minutes and told Bo we would drive back to Houston while he prepared the offer, sign it, fax it back immediately so that he could present it to the listing agent. We were off to Houston and feeling awesome!!

We get to Boerne, Texas and we get a phone call from Bo, our agent. He said that there were several more showings that day and he didn't want to alarm us, but wanted us to be aware that there was a lot of activity on the house that day. Jerrod and I both looked at each other and started to panic...I have never wanted a house more!!

We finally got the contract via email (iphone's are awesome) and stopped in Austin to print it at a Kinko's store. We signed on the dotted line and were off....

We waited and waited all day to see if the offer was accepted. Finally, we heard back from our agent close to 48 hours later and he said the deal was off. The owner decided NOT to sell the house.

We were so disappointed. So disappointed that Jerrod called Bo to see if the owner would sell at the ORIGINAL asking price....the one she started with in January.

She said, "Yes!" so we are back on.

We got an email on the way to Orlando that stated that the "contract has been executed". Awesome!! Now we are ready for inspections and everything else that goes along with buying a home. I anticipate many family memories being made here and I see many a girls weekend in Fredericksburg! I hope everything works out. I'll keep you updated on the status of our new home in the Hill country!! Yippee!!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Check ups

Emma and Jackson had check up since they are a YEAR OLDER!! NO!! Here's the latest on them:

Emma: age 8, height 49 3/4 inches, 71 lbs. She is a another year older and healthy! She still loves chocolate, bugs and animals. She remains the silliest of the household and still can't complete simple request most of the time because she will usually find something else to occupy her time!!

Jackson: age 5, height 41 1/4 inches, 40 lbs. He is so proud of his age!! He still loves his family, has found a best friend in a neighbor- Colby, still loves super heroes and is obsessed with Nintendo DS- Star Wars Lego's game. He would play it all day if I let him!!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Woodlands Resort

I had a great time this weekend with a great group of girls at the Woodlands Resort in Spring. We didn't do much, but we had a good time. We stayed up late every night and learned a lot about each other. It was especially interesting to see just how much we all are alike!!

We had breakfast Saturday morning at the resorts restaurant and then headed to get massages at the spa. We all got one and we were loving it afterwards!! We hung out for several hours by the hot tub once they were over and laughed our heads off. The other ladies were probably wishing we weren't there since we hogged the entire spa and had so much fun. I really think they were jealous....they wanted to join us!! HAHA

We went back to our rooms and napped. Yes, napped for a good long while. Jennifer and Debbie are both pregnant and we all needed the rest. Soon enough we were all talking about dinner and decided it had to be Chuy's Mexican food. It was delish!!

The last day was spent at the pool and we stayed until the very last moment. We read magazines and chatted some more and even set up a golf date later that evening for our husbands. They deserved it!!

The best part??? Coming home to a totally clean house, the laundry ALL clean and folded and get this- dinner in the oven!! My husband rocks!! Love that man! Thanks babe!!
Me, Jennifer w/baby, Debbie w/baby, Nichole and Audra at Chuy's (at the bathroom- why is it that women always take pictures in the bathroom?). Great girls and great fun!!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Will you follow me??!

I know you are out there. I know people are reading, but the sign of "decent" blog is "followers". Am I decent??
If you come and visit my blog every once in a while or you come frequently- you know who you are- FAMILY- will you please sign in and become a "follower"?? I would greatly appreciate it.
In the blogging world, it's bragging rights!!
Thanks, Claire

Here is some info that I copy/pasted from I hope this helps get you on my blog as a "follower":

How do I become a Follower of a blog?
There are several ways to become a follower of a blog. One of the easiest ways is to visit a blog that has added the Following widget and click on the "Follow" button under the "Followers" widget:
You'll then see a popup window with the options to either follow
publicly or privately:
Select how you'd like to follow the blog, then click the "Follow this blog" button. It is that simple, you are now a follower of the blog! If you elected to follow the blog publicly, your profile picture will be displayed on the blog with a link to your Blogger profile (Note: The widget may not show all followers of the blog. If this is the case all followers will be linked from the widget). When you become a follower of a blog, the blog will also be added to your
Reading List on your Blogger dashboard and this site will also show on your FriendConnect profile for all the sites you've joined using Friend Connect. Additionally, you can become a follower of any blog or URL (even if the blog doesn't have the Followers widget) by adding the blog to your Reading List on the dashboard.

Thongs and Teague

Yesterday Teague came walking out of my closet wearing my flip flops!! He will just die about 14 years from now when he sees this picture!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Easter continues...

Jackson loves to hunt. So with Easter here, he takes full advantage of the hunting part. He begs me all day to hide the eggs so that he can hunt for them in the backyard. I like it too so I play along. We hide eggs several times a day- but today he wanted to hide them for me! Whoo HOo!! It was so cute.I went inside and left him in the backyard to hide the eggs. He takes this seriously!!!

After several minutes, he came in to retrieve me and to give me a basket to collect them in. I was so excited...I stepped outside the door and immediately found 2 eggs sitting on the window sills- one to the left and one to the right. Score!!

I guess Jackson got so excited with me that he couldn't control himself. He tore the basket out of my hand, and started running to find all the eggs...that he HID! Hilarious!!

We invited Teague to play along, but he wasn't interested. I am sure he will be next year!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Some firsts and a GOOD time with GOOD wine

This is a first Easter for a member of our family. Olivia Claire was precious of course. Check out those cheeks...

On another note, my side of the family came over minus Joanie, my aunt and my mom. Both of them had to work and they were missed. I made a brisket, pinto beans and green beans. I also let Ms. Rhodes roll rise all day and they were yummy.... I swear, I could make a meal off of those rolls. The wine was a hit as well. They enjoyed the wine and stayed just long enough to help clean the kitchen and finish the PGA game on TV. It was good fun and I am glad I got to host!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter 2009- We try

Easter started Saturday evening this year. We went to church at the 6:30 p.m. service- I highly recommend going at night- loved it!! The kids had a great time at church and so did Jerrod and I.

We tried to take pictures of the kids before they destroyed their outfits. Besides, we don't get to dress our kids up like we used to- they are getting older- urghh- and it's just plain hard to get it all together. We did get a few good shots of the kids and we were actually able to capture of relatively good picture of the family by placing the camera at the base of the stairs...

Here's the first...

That lasted a whole 5 seconds....Let's try someone new....

Nope, that doesn't work either so he was off to find something else to get into...

Yep, he found Mommy's stash.

The kids were off to bed by 9:00 p.m. so we got to work....

The Easter bunny did good this year. The bunny always leaves a chocolate bunny and confetti eggs and assorted treats like activity books, markers, etc.

The kids were up early and ready to have an Easter egg hunt. Since rain was predicted, the bunny hid the eggs all around the house- making sure to leave plenty on the floor for the baby. The first rule of our hunt: ALL EGGS on the floor belong to TEAGUE!

It was fun watching them look for the eggs! Even the big kids.

Unfortunately, the Easter bunny got a little sloppy this year.

Emma discovered an egg with her name on it. It was an egg from years past and she is a smart cookie.

She approached me in the kitchen after they had settled into eating a million calories within a short amount of time- a world record somewhere for sure. She came and asked me if I was the Easter bunny. My response was weak- a pathetic - "No, why do you think that?" and a smile quickly followed. She said that one of the eggs she found had her name on it and she didn't think the Easter bunny would do that. She left it at that and I thought, "OH BOY! Got away with that one". Then, Bailey comes in and asks the same thing. I couldn't help but smile and ask her the same thing. She looked at me and said, "MOM!! There isn't really an Easter bunny, is there?!" I couldn't lie to her so I said, "Do you really think a bunny hops from house to house and places eggs all over for kids to find?". Enough said.

I hate to say it, but I am kinda excited. I don't like the idea of "lying" to my children about these sorts of things. They will be fantastic helpers next year...I am not one bit scared that they will squeal the secret to their brother. They would never do that!!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

First Haircut

I have been holding out for months to cut Teague's hair. There is something about that first haircut...I just think it automatically makes them look older and this is something I NEVER want!!

Teague's hair above his ears was growing past his chin so Jerrod convinced me to cut it off. He didn't know what to think about the scissors, but he reluctantly let me get the hair just above his ears-nothing else!!

I usually take pictures of me cutting the hair and how each child reacts, but Teague was so upset about the scissors that it took 3 of us to get it done. Thanks to Bailey and Jerrod for their help!


Thursday, April 09, 2009

GOOD wine and a GOOD laugh

I am hosting Easter this year at our house for my mom's side of the family. I know they like wine (don't most people?) and I haven't a clue about what makes a GOOD wine...I know, it's crazy, but I have been busy the last say....10 years. No excuses, right??! Well, anyway I needed to know of some good wines to share and I didn't want it to be blatantly obvious that I didn't know what I was doing when they got here so I called on the troops- my wine drinking peeps.

I have heard these girls at one time or another discuss GOOD wine and all the fun they have with friends drinking wine and sometimes even eating cheese...aged cheese. Yucko, I know...crazy again.

Here's the email I sent out:

Hi Ladies,
I am hosting Easter at our house this Sunday and want your help!! I need recommendations for GOOD wine- red and white. Any suggestions you have would be appreciated!!!


Here's what I got in return:

Sylvia, my early morning work out buddy, was first:

Hands down - Cakebread Cabernet (If you can find it). Scott & I also LOVE Rombauer Cab. We buy Rombauer at Crown Discount Liquor next to HEB, but haven’t been able to get the Cakebread since December. It is almost impossible to get. Perry’s and Pappas sell both if you want a taste test! But I am ALWAYS up for more suggestions!

My blogging friend, Jennifer, said this:

I love this white. Fruity and not too dry-- and it’s on the cheaper side.

As for reds, ah….there are so many. Favorite for us is obviously Justin. Just had their Syrah—fantastic, but hard to come by—try Houston Wine Merchant. Also, most Specs sells their Cab Sav. It’s good too. They have a great Chardonnay if you like that flavor too.

Ravenswood Reserve Zinfandel is a good standby.

Cakebread is really good, but more expensive.

I have to go down the aisle and see what I’ve had to help me remember. Maybe that helps a little.

Karen, who must have been a model in her former life , said:

La Crema is a great brand for Chardonnay

Debbie, my total go to girl, says:

I like Sterling Merlot.

Traci, my HS friend that I only (unfortunately) see when GOOD wine is around, said:

Hi Claire I drink Menage a Trois (I know crazy name) all of the's a California Red and tastes great. It's also very inexpensive so by good if you mean expensive, this wine might not be for you. It's about $10 a bottle but you would never know! Have a happy Easter Traci

Ginger, who I THINK knows it all, shoots it straight and says this:

I wish I could help but we drink the cheap stuff...10 bucks or less. I have some good reds I like that are under ten though!!!

This is where I realize that I didn't make myself clear. I went back and looked at the email and I made it look like I wanted only GOOD wine and what I meant to say was GOOD tasting wine. I replied to Ginger with this:

I guess I should have been more clear- I meant GOOD tasting- I think everyone thought I meant expensive!! Give me the names of the cheap stuff...please.


Ginger follows with:

Ok, I can help you with that!
Dynamite Merlot, 2005 and Jacob's Creek Shiraz/Cabernet mix Those are our favorite Red wines.

So I head to the grocery store with all the recommendations from my GOOD wine drinking friends. I looked like a bumbling idiot, a total amateur, a newbie and all the above. I had out my iPhone and was reviewing my emails from these dear friends. I must have spent 15 minutes on every aisle and there were three to go through. It was mind blowing... I mean, go back and look at those emails: shiraz? cakebread? dynamite merlot? Justin and Syrah? Seriously? You have to be kidding me. And Traci's recommendation? Enough said!

I was certain that I had D*U*M*B*O written right across my forehead until a man walked up and asked me if I had found a "dry sherry cooking wine". I couldn't believe it so I started to smirk and asked him if that was a joke. A joke it was not. He was serious and I was seriously stunned. He said he needed it for a recipe.

I immediately felt (a little) better and led him proudly to the "dry sherry" aisle where all the cooking wine was.

It's amazing to me that I was able to find 4 GOOD wines...and a good laugh too.
Thank you ladies for all your help- I couldn't have done it without you!! I'll let you know how things go on Sunday! Happy Easter!!

Monday, April 06, 2009

Happy Birthday Jackson!

Today is my sweet boy's 5th birthday! He has waited FOREVER for this day. This is the first birthday that I have noticed him "counting" down the days until it arrives and then waiting so patiently for it to arrive! It has been a hard month...I think I figured out why.

We have a thing about waking up our kids the day of their birthday with all their siblings (yes, we wake them up early) singing them happy birthday. They all love it and actually ask for it each birthday. Today I got home from the gym at 6:30 a.m., rushed in the bedroom to wake up Jerrod, ran up the stairs to get the girls and unfortunately ran into a "figure" in the dark standing at their door.

Jackson was ALREADY awake- we didn't get their early enough. I politely told Jackson to get his hiney back in his bed so that we could come and wake him up...and he took off running! We met him in his room afterwards and sang him his birthday song loud and proud!!

We all came downstairs for our gourmet breakfast (Cookie Crisp cereal and milk) and he proceeds to tell me that his friend at school will play with him now...he is finally five! I whipped my head around so fast that I almost got whiplash... WHAT??!! Then he continues to tell me how his friend tells him all the time that he won't play with Jackson until he is 5! I swear I thought I was going to lose it...who is this kid?! Does he know who Jackson's mother is?! Obviously, he doesn't!! I think the part that bothers me the most is that Jackson was so excited...for that!! Turns out that this has been going on for months (remember how he doesn't want to go to school?)!

I wish I would have thought to bring my camera into his school when I dropped him off. His entire class was already doing their morning work (ok, I was late...)and they all turned around and yelled "happy birthday Jackson!" and you could just see how happy he was! So sweet!
I always let them choose their favorite meal for dinner and Jackson chose Sponge Bob shaped macaroni and cheese and frozen chicken nuggets. I don't know, but he thought it was Yummo! He ate it up and then opened his presents from his brother and sisters and we tried to explain AGAIN that his birthday party will be in June when school lets out. Oh well.
Happy Birthday Jackson! You are a dream come true and I adore you. I can't believe another year has slipped past us and you have grown a little taller, wiser, nicer and are the absolute best 5 year I have ever known. Hands down.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

T Ball and this tall

MeMe and Papa came into town today to see Jackson play T ball and Bailey play softball. We had a ball laughing and enjoying the tball game. Our first base player was in left field the entire game and every time the ball was hit (that's every time anyone went to bat- after all it is t-ball) everyone would start screaming "where's the ball, T******?". Every time. It was hilarious. Jackson really enjoys playing baseball! He is so proud of himself!
Bailey's game was right after Jackson's so we headed over to her field immediately. Her team did great, but not great enough to win. Bailey hit a line drive to short stop and made it to 2nd base, but wasn't able to bring home the run. She, along with the entire team, was disappointed with their performance- they REALLY wanted to win!! Next time, girls, next time!!
We were exhausted from all the excitement we had already had so we headed home to eat lunch and have some birthday cake with my parents. They ended up giving Jackson his gift from them and we gave Jackson his DS game- Lego Star Wars! Super E-X-C-I-T-E-D!!Later on that day, Jackson started to tell me how he had grown "this tall". This is what it looked innocent and precious!