Wednesday, March 20, 2019

2019: How can it be March already??

Warning: this will be a long post. However, in my defense, I had a few weeks of panic when an email from Google arrived with notification that their blogs were going to be deleted. I have done a little more research, and if I'm not wrong (fingers crossed) my blog will be okay because I don't use google+. Admittedly, I was pretty upset thinking that years of family events and memories would be deleted. Not to mention the panic I felt trying to figure out how to save it all! Fingers crossed and prayers are being said that we are still going to have a digital journal of family events for a while. In the meantime, I need to figure out how to back up what is on the blog.

Because time has gotten away from me, I am going to try to summarize the major events that have taken place so far this year. Thank goodness it isn't July!!

January - Family Christmas: The extended families had numerous obligations for work, school, and family; so, we opted to not hold our annual Christmas Eve family gathering until after the holidays.  We all met at the yellow house and enjoyed brisk weather, warm fire pits, laughing children, crazy dogs, catching up, games, and relaxation.

The girls' Christmas present was a trampoline. It was a little hard
to wrap so it ended up being covered with extra cardboard boxes
and "unwrapped" on the family work day.

Because the living room in the yellow house is really small, we
decided to spend time outdoors. Scott moved Miss Lippy to
the side of the drive way and we used the parking area
for a gathering place.  He had a last minute brainstorm
and built 2 7 ft. long tables and several 2-person benches
out of the old deck boards. They are perfect!! I just need
to give them a new coat of stain and they will
last us for years.  The changes in the parking/driveway
made to accommodate the 5th wheel gave us an
abundance of parking space.

We always have to go through some doggie adjustments
when the family gathers. Tico and Maya got along fine.
The rest of the boys in the pack needed some time to
acclimate to one another. But, the grand girls always
pick up right where they left off.

This year, we decided to eliminate adult gift exchanges and focus
on the kids. They got some interesting gifts this year: money,
journals, games, Hogwarts wands,
 and 400 dum-dum suckers!

I believe if they had been given a bag of rocks and sticks, they
would have been just as happy. They seem to thrive on the fresh
air and outdoor activities when they get together at the
yellow house.

To explain the 400+ dum-dums: Leslie & Rebecca's gifts for
the girls were delayed for one reason or another. Leslie wanted them to
have something to open so she made a mad dash to Sam's club
and bought gigantic bags of suckers!

Jamie and Ryan were so excited to see THAT surprise!  Actually,
they were really good sports about the sugar overload.

Family pics wouldn't be complete without Scott's weird face.
It's a good thing Seth hasn't picked up that habit. It still shocks
me to see Seth standing next to Scott and wondering if
he will be taller than him
the next time he comes over.

We were all joking that Uncle Scott will eventually become know
as Uncle Moneybags if he continues to use
 his spare change as gifts for the girls. 

Not one to let a reason to celebrate Christmas pass,
Jamie planned crazy gift opening games for the girls.

It consisted of trying your best to wrapping gifts wearing oven mitts.
It had to be opened before your partner rolled doubles. If not,
the give and mitts were passed to the next player.

She didn't leave out the adults. They got their share of frustration
trying to unwrap extremely well wrapped gifts.

I think it was more fun taking pictures and listening to them
than it would have been had I played as well.

G... no words.  If he wasn't sneaking inside to warm up, he was sleeping by
the fire pit.  he does not like being cold, smelling like smoke, or being
outside. But, he was there and didn't complain... at least not
to me! Now, Leslie might have gotten an ear full.

My handsome guy... Can't believe he is a senior!!!

Scott set up targets for a bit of shooting competition. We just used his
pellet gun and some paper targets 

Leslie was sent to get targets and only found these.  We
had to get a little creative and give points to who
hit closest to the bull's eye on each target.

Even the grands got to try out their skills.  Once
they figured out which eye to close and how to
put the stock near their shoulders, they did ok.

It really wasn't that loud. No idea why ears needed to be covered.
Maybe she was cold??

After numerous missed shots, Scott finally got out
his fancy shooting chair and the girls started
hitting the target.

January - February Winter Birthdays:  Leslie and Rebecca had their birthday in January and Seth had his in February. I didn't realize how neglectful I've become about taking pictures until I started looking through my pictures for this update. I had to scavenge pictures from everyone's Facebook pages. Needless to say, I need to start remembering my stupid camera when we get together!  Here is what I was able to find; not much but better than nothing!

The family decided to meet in Temple to celebrate Seth's 18th birthday.
It is a 2 1/2 hour drive for Leslie's family; an hour for Ryan's family;
35 min. drive for Becca from work; 40 drive for Seth from Gatesville; and 30
min drive for us from Killeen. Schedules were crazy at this time of
the year and we were determined to NOT put off this important
milestone for Seth.

He hasn't ever been too thrilled about getting his
picture taken. But, his aunts and mom were
relentless and got a pretty good shot of him.

He was even really good natured about the Roadhouse
birthday tradition. 

How can this sweet, gentle giant be 18?!?!?

Jamie has become the official baker for birthdays. She managed
to make a personal cake for Leslie...

another one for Rebecca...

and one for the family to enjoy. We are so
lucky to have her... the cakes are always
amazing!


March - Granddaughter Sleep-over; Sophie's fund raiser; Family Camping: One of the things I noticed while we were at the Roadhouse was how much the girls miss each other. They were disappointed that we had to end birthday dinner so early and it was so hard for them to say good-bye. I decided to have their moms bring them to me for a weekend around their spring breaks. Unfortunately, their breaks weren't at the same time; they were back to back.  But, luckily it worked out. Depending on the day and hour, they had a great time, an ok time; and a not so good time. But, they managed to create lots of sweet memories. We played on the trampoline, colored, visited a local Rock and Roll Ice Cream Parlor, shopped for books at Barnes & Noble, had a visit from Aunt B, stayed up way too late, went to church, and ate a lot of junk food.

Uncle Scott and Poppy set up an outdoor table under
and awning because we had simply beautiful weather.
Too beautiful to stay inside for meals.

I love that the girls enjoy coloring. I'll admit that I'm a coloring
fan and cherish the time we spent coloring and chatting. 

The girls managed to fit on the new IKEA sleeper/sofa. But,
a couple of them have issues with gas so one of them
moved to the love seat in the middle of the night.

I managed to get a beautiful picture of the grand girls
with my feathered girls in the background.


Who can pass up a chance for a silly pic??

The trampoline was a rest spot, jumping spot, snacking spot,
and chatting spot. Still one of my smartest purchases ever!

March - Baking and Camping: During part of the Ft. Worth grands' spring break, Sophie needed to learn to make cinnamon rolls.  She was chosen to attend a leadership conference for a week. However, it will cost $1,000. Leslie wants her to earn as much of the fee as possible so she decided to sell cinnamon rolls to the school staff, Gerson's work associates, and their church family.  I drove up and spent a couple of days with them to teach her how to make them.  Sophie did an amazing job and worked so hard. Together we managed to get about half of her orders filled.  She finished up the orders once they went home after our camping trip.

Sophie learned how to use the bread machine to make her dough.
She used regular yeast for the first batch and it took forever.
Once we got the rapid rise yeast for bread machines, the
process went much more quickly.

Before long, she had two bread machines going at once
and didn't need any help at all.

Doesn't everyone need an apron this cute??
The socks really set off the outfit.
It's a shame she looks so serious.


We had originally planned to camp at Big Bend National Park. Unfortunately, the government shut down made it tough to get reservations in time. We ended up going to a local Corp of Engineers Park. It was okay, but quite a let down after planning on Big Bend.  Leslie, her girls, Scott, Ron and I went out early and got camp set up. Ryan, Jamie, and the twins joined us a couple days later. Rebecca came out and spent a day with us. It was cold but bearable and the girls had a great time.

The camp site we had backed up onto a huge, empty field.
The grands were able to play baseball, kick ball, horse shoes,
climb trees, and shoot off sky rockets. 

For some reason, the guys preferred to assume
the responsibilities of the spectator section.
However, Scott had a pretty good reason to sit around.
The brakes on Miss Lippy locked up on the way out.
He spent the first couple of days at camp working
on getting them in good working order again.

The nights and early mornings were pretty cold. However,
the afternoons warmed up beautifully. The girls were
able to remove several layers of clothing and got
plenty of exercise.

Unfortunately, there was only one hiking trail at the camp grounds.
We were only able to cover part of it because one loop was
overgrown.  

The part that was cleared was fairly easy to walk, nice and wide,
and had a few really scenic areas perfect for pictures.

Like this one...

And this one...

and this one.

Any time spent with family around a camp fire and enjoying
nature fills my heart with joy and happiness.

Unfortunately, this camp out wasn't all joy and happiness.
We experience the sorrow only pet owners understand.
Crazy Hoss, Rebecca's bulldog, died while we were at camp.
He was eleven years old and we think his old heart
just gave out after a day of running, barking, and
being loved.  We will miss the crazy, sloppy guy.


Whew! The last time I got this far behind, I swore it wouldn't happen again. Never say never! Anyway, that's the last few months in a nutshell.









1 comment:

Maggie Gutierrez said...

Mimi, PLEASE make another post!