Thursday, April 30, 2009


I received this email this morning and just had post it! That Swine Flu is scary stuff... everyone needs to know how to protect themselves!
CDC Warning: *** DO NOT DO THIS!***

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

They Don't Eat People

Lyric and I found a caterpillar in the garden today, so of course now the poor thing is in a jar with some dirt and leaves. Tonight she asked if she could take it out and play with it. I said I didn't know much about caterpillars so I didn't know if that was such a good idea. (I was thinking of the poor caterpillars health). She just looked at me and said, "They don't eat people!"
Well, there you have it, of course you can play with him.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Cadence Shocks Us All

This morning I was sitting at the table and I saw Cadence walk into the bathroom by herself. My first reaction was to go and get her because I couldn't think of any reason the nineteen month old needed to be in the bathroom by herself. I decided to just listen to see what she might be doing. I heard here putting the potty seat on. She then started to yell, "Potty! Potty!"
Let me give a little background... when myself or one of the girls is going potty I always ask her if she needs to go potty. She either says no or sits on the potty and does nothing. I'm not one of those parents who try to make their little one go potty. I try to encourage her, but when she says no I don't push it.
So, today I was shocked when she went in alone to go potty. She has never done that before. I went in thinking okay: she will sit on the potty, we will sing Itsy Bitsy Spider, she will get a piece of toilet paper and put it in the potty and say she is done. I put her on the potty and sat on my stool in front of her. She started singing Itsy Bitsy Spider and wanted me to sing along. All of a sudden she was pooping! I was shocked! But she did it, she pooped in the potty.
After she was done, I offered her a pair of panties. She wore them for five minutes and asked for her 'biper'. She put the diaper on and wouldn't try to pee in the potty the rest of the day.
I guess Little Miss Independent will go when she's ready to:-)

Muffin Tin Monday-Under the Sea

Her Cup Overfloweth hosts Muffin Tin Monday. The theme for today was Under the Sea. It has been a really long time since we have done a themed muffin tin, so today I decided to do one.They had "fish" sandwiches, pudding with a graham cracker across the top (I called it a bridge over the ocean, but it was chocolate pudding. I guess it could be the Texas gulf:), I attempted to make an octopus cheese stick, but the eight legs didn't turn out too well, so I called it a jelly fish, there was blue ocean applesauce (Lyric never eats applesauce, but she did today), "seaweed"green beans with goldfish mixed in, starfish kiwi, strawberry pails and tomato boats with pretzel and marshmallow sails. I have to include a close up of the starfish kiwi because it was just cute! The girls enjoyed their deep sea adventure!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Poppy Festival

We went to the Poppy Festival this weekend. I only took a few pictures, but we had a good time! Of course, we had to have some festival food. Roasted Corn is my fave, but I had to share it with my little vultures. "I want a bite 'tori', pease!""You don't want to share, well, maybe I will just take one!""This corn dog is okay, but not as good as the corn!"They had some fun activities for the kiddos. The big girls went in a jumpy house and down the slide (about 47 times). They also enjoyed the train. It was a little warm, but overall a good time!

We've Created a Monster!

Okay, I have to be honest. I titled this post we, but really it was me. I am afraid I have created a monster! I saw Baby Cadence sitting in the John Deer today and no one wanted to give her a ride. She LOVES to ride in the John Deer, but she is at the mercy of her sisters, so I decided to teach her to drive it herself. She can reach the gas pedal, but she has no idea how to steer it! She can only go the way the wheel is pointing. She would get close to something and say, "Help, mama's car help! Or, help, bike help!" Story enjoyed the ride despite how rough it was. I am happy to say the only thing she ran over was my foot (three times)! Little Miss Independent is gaining a little more independence each day:-)

Friday, April 24, 2009

Great Photos of the Girls and Baby Z Comes to a Playdate

We had a really cute mail playdate today. All of the kiddos made postcards to mail to each other. Mollie took some amazing pictures of Cadence and Lyric. I jacked them off her blog, hopefully she won't mind. She is an amazing photographer! Check out her site to see some of her awesome work.
Baby Cadence the pudding face. Miss Lyric is such the tomboy! At one point she had four boys chasing her yelling, "Get her! Let's get her!" I'm not sure what she did to provoke them, but luckily she was a little quicker than they were. Love this one! So, this would be the end of this post because I didn't get any pictures from our activity. But, Baby Z joined us at the park today. This was the first playdate he has been to with us, so I just had to include them.

Release of the Butterflies

Our butterflies all hatched, we enjoyed them for a few days and now it was time to set them free. We carried them out to the girls' picnic table and opened the net. Daddy had to help them fly out the top. The girls knew they were going to fly out, but seemed a little surprised as each one made its exit. This was a really cool project. If you have never done it I definitely recommend it! Check out this website for details.

Minimally Invasive Education

I ran across this fascinating article tonight.
Good stuff!

Thursday, April 23, 2009


I first heard of Unschooling almost exactly one year ago. I thought it was an interesting concept and was intrigued by it. We have always known we were going to homeschool, but thinking about "school at home" did not appeal to me. So, Unschooling as a way of "teaching", or shall I say, a way for my children to learn, made sense to me. But then when I read about Radical Unchooling I was really intrigued. No time out, no food restrictions, no bedtime...What?
I remember my mom was in town for the big Lake Buchanan fishing trip we take every year and I told her and Devon about the things I had been reading. About these people who parent their kids with no punishments and no bedtimes. They both kind of laughed at me. My mom even said, "Do you go out looking for these weirdos or do they find you?" (Yes, you did mother.)
But the more I read the more it all made since to me and when I shared what I had learned with Devon it made sense to him to. For basically the last year we have been lifting limits for our children. They don't have a bedtime, they can eat what they want, there are no punishments...I will say we have our good days and we have our not so good days, but when I look at other peoples' kids who use time out, spank or other methods of punishment I have to say their kids really are no different than mine. Children are children or maybe I should say children are human and WE all have our good moments and our bad moments. I love what Dayna Martin said on one of her YouTube videos. She gets cranky and in a bad mood sometimes, but she has thirty more years of experience dealing with those feelings than her children do, so yeah kids have their moments.
I recently listened to an awesome podcast by Sarah Parent at Humans Being. It was all about Unparenting. She did a great job explaining Unparenting. If you want to know more about it or have never heard of it or if you are one of my children's grandparents check out her podcast. The first thirty minutes are basically her giving an update on what has been going on with her, so you can skip ahead to about minute number thirty one or so if you want to get to the meat of it.
Let me know what you think.

Little Miss Independent

Independence...freedom from the control, influence, support, aid, or the like, of others. What every parent wants for their child. Right? I am all about independence. BUT, not at 19 months old! Don't get me wrong... there are some things that I want the 19 month old to do independently: feeding herself is great, picking out her clothes is great, if we could get her to go potty-that would be awesome, but there are just certain things you can't do at 19 months. Buckling your car seat or putting the lid on your sippy cup are just a couple. Cadence now wants to do EVERYTHING herself! I am not kidding when I say everything. She has decided she can now buckle herself in her car seat... she can't! The first couple of times she wanted to do it I would fight with her because I mean come on, it is a safety issue. Now, I have realized if I let her do it and just leave her alone she will eventually ask for help. It is okay if I help her as long as it is on her terms.
Yesterday, she wanted some water. Okay, I'll get you some water. No, she had to get it herself. So, I held her up to the refrigerator so she could push the water button. I then attempted to put the lid on her sippy cup. She threw a fit and wanted to do it herself. I tried to convince her to let me do it, but then decided to just go and get a towel to catch the spill. She turned the cup up to get a drink and of course water poured out of the side. She then had to get more water, but she asked for help with the lid the second time.
She also decided she wanted an orange yesterday. I offered to peel it, but she insisted on doing it herself. I asked her if I could get it started like I do for Lyric. She just held the orange up to her chest and yelled, "NO!" So, I left her alone to peel it.
She took a bite out of the side to get it started and then sat there and peeled the entire orange! I could not believe she peeled the whole thing. Such concentration! Enjoying the fruit of her labor! Later in the day, I walked into the kitchen to find this:We keep a candy bowl on the bottom shelf of the pantry for the girls to get whenever they want. She decided she needed some M&Ms. But, look at the lengths she was willing to go to to get the M&Ms. She went into the bathroom, got the stool and carried it into the kitchen. I got what I needed, will you open it? Yeah, you will let me help you now:-)This morning I was going to heat her up some sausage. She would not let me open the package. She insisted on doing it herself! When she couldn't get it with her fingers she resorted to using her teeth.

Lyric and Story were both pretty independent when they were babies, but I don't think it started this young for them. I guess we will just have to see how Baby Cadence changes with age. If she continues the way she is now all I have to say is--Watch out world!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Inks Lake

We were supposed to go to Tyler this weekend, but Caba and KK were sick (hope you're better guys), so we decided to go camping instead. Devon and I hadn't camped at Inks Lake in like 10 years, so we decided to see if they had any sites available. We know this is a REALLY popular park, so we were prepared to check out another place if they were booked up. The weather was so bad on Friday they had a lot of cancellations, so we were able to get a spot.
The first thing when we got to our site Lyric had to take out her snails so they could check it out.I think they approved. Daddy started setting up camp and the girls decided they needed a snack.Cadence was sharing with Lyric, but then decided she needed her own.Can you tell what it is? No, not an apple. Figure it out? What, doesn't everybody just wash tomatoes and eat them whole? After we had camp set up and the girls finished their tomatoes we decided to go for a hike. Story Bell refused to give up the backpack to Cadence, so I had to wear her in the sling. It worked out okay, but it wasn't the most comfortable way to be hiking.
If that child wasn't so skinny I don't think she would fit in the backpack. Look how long her legs are!
Inks Lake has some beautiful hiking trails. The views were awesome!
Lyric did a little rock climbing.Then she discovered her walking stick also makes a great sword.Back at camp, the girls decided to climb a tree. Of course that night we had to roast some marshmallows. Everyone got a turn.
Even Baby Cadence.
Miss Lyric tried a burnt marshmallow because that is how Daddy likes them, but it was "too burnt" for her.
On Sunday, we rented a canoe to check out the lake.
We were all REALLY excited!Daddy has been promising the girls that he was going to take them in a canoe for a while now, so they were READY!Okay, so everyone who knows me knows that I am a pretty laid back person. I go with the flow. I would consider myself pretty strong maybe daring sometimes. But I had no idea what this canoe ride was going to do to me. The girls and I got in and we were all ready to head out. Daddy took this picture: and life was great. He then climbed in the canoe and pushed us away from the shore. I lost it! I was so scared I almost started crying! I contemplated jumping out of the canoe! It was so shaky! I don't think this would have bothered me, but I had my three babies in that boat and I could just see them flying into the water. Thinking back now I know I was being super silly, but at the time it was terrifying!The girls loved putting their hands in the water. This would not have been a big deal except they moved around a lot and that made the boat move around a lot and that made me freak out a lot! At one point I snapped at Lyric really bad and she started crying and I felt bad so I started crying... thinking back now the whole situation was really weird... you would have thought I was my mother the worry wart!We did see lots of cool wildlife on the lake. I don't know what kind of bird this was (maybe some kind of hawk) , but he was sure pretty.
There were turtles everywhere. Lyric has been asking for a pet turtle, so it was fun seeing them in the wild.Baby Cadence didn't have much to say, but she seemed to enjoy herself.We rowed out and found a place to stop for a picnic. There was a huge snake skin in the water.Cadence pretended to be a snake and get Daddy.The girls enjoyed shared their picnic with the ducks. They named them Jenny and Browney.Miss Lyric got herself in a little predicament on the rocks, but Daddy quickly came to the rescue.When it came time to put our life jackets back on and climb in the canoe Baby Cadence decided she had had enough! She refused to put her life jacket back on and threw a fit when I tried to put her in the canoe. There was no way I was going to force her! First of all, I don't think you should make a nineteen month old go in a canoe if she doesn't want to. Second, I had a hard enough time riding in the canoe with three calm children, but I could not imagine doing it with one screaming child! So, Cadence and I hiked back to the dock. It ended up working out fine, but I had no idea where we were when we started our hike I was just carrying a nineteen month old hoping we would make it. See that's the kind of person I am I don't freak out. I just handle it.
Story had a turn with my paddle as the left the shore. Sweet sisters sharing a seat.
Daddy didn't think he was going to make it back to the dock. The wind was blowing against him and he was struggling! Luckily he and the girls made it back about the same time Cadence and I did.
When we got back to camp Miss Lyric decided to read her snails some books. They seemed to really enjoy the stories.Sisters climbed a tree yesterday, so Baby Cadence decided to give it a try today.That afternoon we decided to check out the playground. It was on the other side of the campground, so we decided to drive over. It took about four minutes to get there, but that was enough time for Cadence to fall asleep. I didn't really want her to have a nap so she would go to sleep early that night, but there was no waking her up. She was out!We were having sausage sandwiches for supper, so I decided to make a little camp side guacamole(The girls and I call it guacamole, but we usually just eat the avocados plain). I discovered this easy way to make it when Devon and I were camping in the Guadalupe Mountains. You stick your avocados in a ziplock baggie and mash. Then you just tear the corner of the baggie to serve. No clean-up!
I had a few helpers.Yes, they were eating it right out of the peeling, no chips needed:-) So sweet, I could lick it off!Daddy wanted to take the girls fishing. All they caught was a little moss. Daddy found the whole thing frustrating and vowed not to bring the fishing poles next time. Maybe when they are a little older and have a little more patience.
After fishing, Baby Cadence found herself a little snack before supper. Can't beat Oreos.
Devon and I played a little trick on the girls that evening. They were REALLY, REALLY tired and so were we. So, we told them we wanted to drive them over and show them the lake house we used to go to with Uncle Trent and Uncle Brandon. We said Uncle Trent and Aunt Kristin had been working on it this weekend, so we would go see how nice it was. We knew they, or at least Cadence and Story, would fall asleep and be out for the night.It worked!Even Miss Lyric crashed! When we got back to camp I enjoyed reading a book and Devon did a little fishing. It was nice and relaxing! Until about 3:00 the next morning. Story and I woke up. I had no idea what time it was, it was freezing and one of the air mattresses had lost all of its air so all five of us were on one mattress. She and I couldn't go back to sleep. We laid there forever! Finally, she said she wanted to go get something to eat, so we got up.. I figured it would be morning soon. I was wrong! We got in the car at 3:45! So, we had a few well, quite a few snacks and hung out in the car. At 4:20 I heard Cadence screaming, so I went and got her. I decided to strap her in her carseat and drive around the campground. We got to see two skunks and a deer. She was back asleep after a few laps around the campground, so Story and I headed back to hang out and wait on Daddy and Lyric to wake up. We told stories and she "drove" us to Sonic and then she "drove us to Whataburger (can you tell we were hungry for 'real' food, the snacks just weren't cutting it).
Finally, at 6:00 I told her I couldn't stay awake any more. She climbed on my lap and we laid my seat back and both went to sleep.
At 7:00 I woke up Devon and told him I was ready to go. We packed it up and headed out. We had a GREAT time! I would definitely suggest this park. It is beautiful!