Friday, June 15, 2012


For the past week, James has been in Boston for work. It's a trip I've wanted to take for a long time, so I have to admit I was a little bit jealous to be stuck at home while he was soaking up the culture. The good news is that Cullen and I really got to soak up our together time while James took in a Red Sox game and lobster rolls.
With James in Boston, we needed a little extra help with Cullen as I took on job interviews and a pretty ridiculous stomach bug. Cullen spent a good bit of time with Aunt Peg and Uncle Andy. We are so blessed to have family nearby to help entertain Cullen in our time of need. Cullen spent some of his time at Camp Dement telling Uncle Andy what to draw.
"Daddy's Big Truck and Scout and the Barbecue Sauce"

He even got in plenty of his favorite snacks over there.
Easy Mac, pretzel rods, spicy crackers... What more could a boy ask for?

We also spent a fabulous evening in the company of Miss Megan. I'm thinking I got some sort of food poisoning. It was pretty ridiculous. I got sick in a way that I couldn't care for Cullen. In stepped Megan. I feel so blessed to have such an amazing friend. I'm pretty sure Cullen was happy I slept the whole time she was there.

I spent a lot of this week trying to keep Cullen with some sort of routine and bringing in some good habits. I finally talked him out of sleeping with shoes on, and he actually walks himself to time out when he does something wrong. I know I'm biased, but I think he's a pretty good kid.
Oh yeah... Then there was that night that I let him eat Cheetos, Parmesan cheese, and an ice cream sandwich for dinner. As it turns out, James isn't the only fun parent in this house.

xoxo ashley

Saturday, June 9, 2012

A Sense Of Humor

God has a funny sense of humor. I've always known it. How could I not? On a regular basis, God reminds me that He has a sense of humor.

Thursday night, our air conditioner stopped working. We have one income, our health insurance costs more than doubled this month, and our a/c stopped working.

In the mean time, we're keeping our hopes up and our prayers going. God may have a sense of humor, but He also has a plan. For right now, we aren't privy to His plans for the future. The important thing to remember is that His plans are perfect.

I can't wait to find out what He has in store for my precious little family next.

xoxo ashley

Monday, June 4, 2012

Squeezing It In

I feel like I'm getting so much done each day, but it seems like there is always more to do. I can't say I'm surprised by it, but I sure was hoping to have less to do while I was at home. The truth is, I've had so much on my plate lately, I haven't been getting anything done around the house. During my current sabbatical, I decided to start giving myself goals each week. Last week, I got so much done, so I am hoping for a lighter load this week.

Of course, we've squeezed in plenty of time for playing. I think my favorite part of not working is the opportunity for play on the weekends. I'm getting laundry and cleaning done while James is at work, so we get to play when he's at home.

Cullen is really entering an imaginative phase. I love the things he comes up with. One morning, he decided it would be a good idea to shove a plastic hamburger and coordinating bun between James' toes. I call this game Burger Foot. And I am so delighted that I was not asked to participate in this one.
James decided last Sunday that we needed to get out of the house, so we took Cullen to a little yogurt place near the house. Cullen was not a fan of all of the options, but he happily settled in with a cup of chocolate.
That evening, we headed up to a nearby restaurant for a friend's birthday. Cullen was pretty good about sitting through a grown up meal, but he also got plenty of time in the arcade and the petting zoo. Cullen wanted to get really close to the animals, but he refused to pet them or ride the pony. He's a funny kid.

When Laura was visiting, she got Cullen those little capsules that grow into sponge animals when they get wet. We've been giving Cullen a couple almost every night with his bath, and he is collecting them like quite the little hoarder. When he's feeling generous, he gives the sponge animals a boat ride around the bathtub. I think he's just showing them the drain to remind them what could happen if they don't play his way.
Much like every other American, we spent Memorial Day outside. The boys spent a lot of time swimming, and I did my best to document. Cullen got so brave and decided he wanted to jump into the pool from one of the pedestals in Peg and Andy's back yard. Now that he's ridiculously comfortable with the water, we really need to work on swim skills.
Cullen inherited this precious chair from Charly. I was pretty excited when Peg offered it to us, because it gave us a great chance to remove the antique rocking chair from his room. As cute as the rocker was in his nursery, I feel like it doesn't really have a spot in a little boy's room. I'm hoping to encourage reading time in his new little chair.
A part of my project has been cleaning out every closet, cabinet, dresser and drawer. I sent eleven bags to Goodwill and threw away almost as much. I am loving the reduction in clutter. Once I cleared out clothes, I decided to go through Cullen's toy collection. We had toys in almost every room of the house, and I was getting pretty tired of the mess. I consolidated toys so that each room is practically toy free with a few toys hidden discreetly. I moved most of the toys into Cullen's room.

Cullen loved it during play time. Oh how fun to have his toys in his room. So exciting! At bed time, it become some sort of Greek tragedy. Cullen decided he was a big boy, and big boys don't need toys in their room. James came up with the less-than-pleasant idea of putting the unnecessary toys into the attic. Since I can't reach the pull string for the attic, they've been there since last week. Stuffed animals, toy dinosaurs, trains, etc. Not long after James leaves for work each day, Cullen has asked me to get the toys out of the attic. Someday.
 Just last month, James' mom renewed our children's museum membership. Cullen and I decided to take a date to the museum with Dana, Noah, and Baby Bennett. The only picture I managed was while Cullen was pausing for a snack, but he really had a great time. It was good to get out of the house, and it's always fun when we get together with the Ernst family.
 Of course, Friday afternoon, I was moving on to my fourth order of the week. It was time to get prepped for little Theron's first birthday party. I was so excited to be able to handle Theron's party, because his mom and I used to work together in Austin. Melissa picked a really precious sock monkey theme for the party. While I prepped cupcakes, Kristen came over to visit with her almost-two-month-old little boy. It was great to catch up with her while I was working.  
 Have I mentioned lately how much I love to bake and play in the kitchen? Such a blessing!
On Saturday, we made it to Theron's birthday party for a bit before we had to drop off James' truck to get his window replaced. (Long story short, some low life decided it would be really awesome to break out the window next to Cullen's carseat to steal James' laptop and iPad on the other side of the truck. I would like to believe there's a special place in hell for people that like to steal from others.) Anyway... We found a Baskin Robbins in a really questionable part of town to get some ice cream while we waited. Cullen picked out some cotton candy ice cream that I could smell from across the table. I'm sure all the sugar had nothing to do with why he wouldn't nap that day.
 On Sunday, we made it out to Lake Jackson for an afternoon of swimming and visiting with my parents. For the first time in probably two years, Cullen fell to sleep in James' arms. So so so so cute.
This week's project will be to start on the new sheets I'm making for Cullen's bed. It seems like all of the sheets I've found for toddler beds are really tough and not soft at all, so I'm going to make my own. Let's not talk about how long ago I bought the material. I'm just hoping I'll at least get started this week.

xoxo ashley