Mark, Jennifer, Ethan, Emily

This blog is about our family, who have dealt with the loss of two sons with Muscular Dystrophy, the adoption of a son diagnosed with Agenesis of Corpus Callosum and the birth our a healthy little girl. It's a crazy life, but we are loving it.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Thankful Thursday!

This week I'm thankful for quite a few things.

#1. I have this medical issue that started in October. I was really sick on Halloween and this issue keeps coming back. I've been to the doctor twice with this issue already. Well, I started to have the same issue again. Fortunately, I work for the county sheriff's office and employees can go see the jail doctor on the days she comes in. I was able to go see her and she confirmed what the last two doctor visits have told me. She gave me a script for some meds and some names of doctors to refer me to. The visit to see her was free, I just had to pay for my prescription. I'm feeling better today than I have in a week. And believe me, I'm very thankful for that. Please pray for me. This issue is severely painful and it seems the only relief is surgery. I really don't want to go down that path, but I also am tired of being in pain.

#2. Today was the last day of school! Woo Hoo!!!! Here is the first day of school this year.

Here is the last day. Oh yeah, we also got a new couch.

Besides being our pastor, my husband also works for our school district, so he's out for the summer. He will be home with both kids all summer. I think he looks forward to sleeping in, but I'm not sure he's excited about spending his days with two fighting kids.

#3. I successfully made meringue.

My hubby loves chocolate meringue pie. So, I thought I'd take a crack at it. I was super excited how this turned out. I give you the recipe later, right now I need to get to bed.

I hope everyone has a blessed week!


Friday, May 25, 2012

Thankful Thursday on Friday & My Baby Graduates!

Sorry I didn't get to my Thankful Thursday. Honestly, not a whole lot has been going on this week. On top of that, I came home from sick from work yesterday afternoon. After I came home, I changed clothes, wrapped myself in a blanket and crashed on the couch for a couple hours. It's what I really needed, and I totally forgot about updating my blog.

Well, last summer our AC went out. A couple months ago it was our water heater. This week, it's been this...

Our microwave. Don't hate because it's still sitting on a 1970's wallpapered shelf that the lady who lived in our house before us wallpapered. She put wallpaper on every wall in the house, even on the kitchen ceiling. Yes, there is wallpaper on our kitchen ceiling. True story. Anyway, I figure one day, I'm gonna get one of the over the stove microwaves. This microwave started to heat only 5 seconds at a time!

In the mean time, did you know the oven heats things, not just bakes them? Who knew? It's only taking it 5x longer to heat leftovers than my microwave, but whateves!

The big and "I'm thankful" news is this...

My baby graduated from Kindergarten today!

This picture makes me so happy. I love them both so much!

Me and my baby girl.

And, if you remember my little rant I did on parents who have no social training, (if not, you can read it here) it happened again. Here is my view of all the kindergarten classes singing.


Praying everyone has a wonderful week!

Love, Jennifer

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Thankful Thursday!

Happy Thursday! I hope everyone is having a good week.

A few things I'm thankful for this week:

#1. So glad it's getting near the end of the school year. It's been a hard year for Ethan in 3rd grade and Ethan + Homework = 1 really frustrated momma! He told me that he will not be having anymore homework for the rest of the year. Can I get an Amen?! I don't even want to think about homework in 4th grade!

#2. Mark has started to get our agenda going for our trip to Branson. He already reserved our hotel room and bought tickets to Silver Dollar City and to Joseph The Musical.

I excited about seeing this play. I'm so excited for the kids to see this Bible story acted out in real life, to make it a little more real for them. This is going to be a great Bible lesson in front of their eyes.
They say that real animals walk down the aisles and Mark booked our seats on the floor where the animals will walk pass us.

If anyone has any suggestions on something we have to see or do while in Branson, feel free to let me know.

#3. Did I tell you I have my first paying cookie gig? A local bank orders 4 dozen homemade cookies every Friday.

First I made these...

Chocolate Chip Pecan

Next I made these...

Orange Vanilla Cream

This week, it's...

Oatmeal Chocolate Covered Raisin
I'm officially is cookie Heaven! Have a great rest of the week!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day!

I wish every mother a very wonderful Mother's Day! Whether all your children are healthy, or your pregnant, or you have a special needs child, or you have a child in Heaven, today is a day to honor you.

I had a wonderful day with my two children, and I watched their precious faces as they handed me their homemade cards with their hand prints and homemade magnets with their photos on it. Those thing I will treasure forever. I also am missing my precious Max and Chandler. I am also thanking my precious Heavenly Father for choosing me to be their mother, even through I had my boys for a short while.

Mother's are a gift from God. I love this job that God has charged me with. I heard this song for the first time the other day, and as I listened to it, tears just streamed down my face. Every word that was in this song is something I have prayed over my own children many, many times and absolutely hit home with me.

Please listen, and may all of you have a very happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Thankful Thursday!

So the other night after supper, Emily went to play outside. Ethan then said he was going to ride his bike around the block. Ethan has a little more freedom than Emily. He can ride his bike around our neighborhood as long as he tells us where he's going, we agree on it, and he follows the rules.

So, I'm cleaning the kitchen, Emily's outside playing and Ethan says he's going bike riding. A little bit later, I get a phone call from my dad, who tells me that not only Ethan is at their house, but Emily's there too. My parents live three houses down from us, however we're in a subdivision out in the county, so they may be three houses down, but they're 1/2 a mile away.

I tell my dad that Emily is not supposed to be down there and he should send both kids back home. Now, Mark waits outside for them. When they come home, I can hear Mark, not yelling, but being very stern with Emily, telling her she knows she is not to leave the yard and explaining why. Next, I hear Emily crying.

Emily has a very tender heart. She's very sensitive. The other day she received a "yellow" on her behavior folder for talking too much (she's really like her dad, no kidding!) and cried when she showed it to me. Well, needless to say, she knew she had done wrong. She knows she's  not to leave the yard. So, she cried off and on all night. After getting her out of the bathtub and drying her off, she started to cry again. I reiterated to her we were not mad at her, we are supposed to protect her and we do that by not allowing her leave the yard by herself until she's older.

Now's the time I tell you that I have been reading "The Help"

So, while I was drying my baby off and she started to cry again, I just wrapped the towl around her, told her she was a good girl and how much we love her, then this book came to my mind. So as I held her, I said this...

This book is very good by the way. I have yet to see the movie.

So, I'm thankful for such a tender-hearted baby girl. I pray she will carry that sweet, gentle spirit with her all the days of her life.

Lastly, after I got home this afternoon, Ethan asked me if he could call his dad. I said sure. He dials, then realizes he misdialed and hangs up. The phone rings again and Ethan picks it up. He's talking to someone, so I assume it was Mark. Then, Ethan hands the phone to me and tells me they need to speak with me.

Me:  "Hello?"

Them: "Hi. This is Bastrop County Sheriff's Office. Your son just dialed 911 and I'm making sure everything's alright."

Me: "This is who?"

Yep, we had our first 911 misdial. I explain everything's fine, my son misdialed trying to call his dad.

I'm thankful for what happened next. Ethan started crying, because he didn't mean to call 911. He knows that is for emergencies only. But Ethan's not one to cry. When he does something wrong he is usually stone, blanked faced. He get's defensive. We're not sure if that's due to the ACC, or that's his make-up genetically or what. ACC kids sometimes don't know how to react in certain social situations, they get confused or they just don't understand severity of certain situations. They sometimes don't get sarcasm and have a hard time reading facial expressions.

But he actually showed true, real emotion to this lesson. I explained it's ok, I wasn't mad, he just needs to be more careful next time while dialing. He said alright, then proceeded to call his dad, correctly this time. But I was actually impressed with this!

So, today I'm thankful for little ones who may have shed some tears this week, but learned some important  lessons. And I'm thankful that I was there to hug them, tell them how much I loved them and explain to them that even though mistakes were made, they are loved, they are cherished, and they are still kind, smart and important.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Birthday Weekend, Teacher Appreciation & All I Want Is Some Homemade Bread!

So, I turned 34 on Saturday. No big deal. I usually don't like a big fuss made over my birthdays. But I just had to share what some pretty special people in my life did for my birthday.

On Friday, I was taken to lunch by about 10 of my co-workers. That was so sweet of them. Then, my baking friend Arielle made this...

Yeah. A large yummy, delicious chocolate mint layered dessert with grasshopper cookies on top. This thing was so good and so appreciated.

On Saturday, I walked into the dining room to find this...

I received a bread machine, a new rolling pin, a digital timer & a gift card to Itunes along with a pretty funny card. I was so excited.

Then, he made me this for dinner...

Steak, shrimp, steamed asparagus and baked potatoes.

So, on Sunday morning, I got up early before church to make some wheat bread in my bread maker. Or so I thought.

First, I poured the water in the machine, then for what ever reason, I measured all the dry ingredient out and mixed them together, including the yeast. Right after I did this, I realized I was supposed to put the yeast in the machine last. Not sure if the bread would turn out, I dumped the dry ingredients and started over. Again, I put the water in, the dry ingredients in, then the yeast. I used the users manual and selected the right bread size, color, etc. and then walked away from the machine.

About 15 minutes later, I was helping Emily get ready for church and I heard a big crash. Then I hear my husband say something like uh-oh. I ran to the kitchen and saw my new bread machine on the floor, my bread dough flung across the kitchen and two glasses sitting on the counter broken in the sink.

Mark told me he was coming in from the garage and saw the bread machine shaking off of the counter. He ran over to catch it, but didn't make it in time. So, I had a nice mess to clean up.

After church, I tried again. Here is my first bread, but third attempt at bread in my new machine.

Here are the kids enjoying my first, but third attempt bread.

Last, I made a few cookies for teacher appreciation for my kids teachers.

I made a few gifts for Mother's Day for our church ladies.

Found this idea somewhere in blog land. Place a few stems of fake greenery in some hand soap bottles, add a tag and some ribbon and call it happy. I used on of these for a teacher's gift as well.

Here are the gifts for the kid's teachers.

So all that to say, I had a wonderful birthday weekend. The Lord has blessed me beyond measure. Each day I thank Him for all He has done for me, and today, I thank Him for the past 34 years, for my family and friends and I pray for many more years with my precious family and friends.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

I Just Gotta Show You!

So the kids got their school pictures in. They are so good, I just had to show them off.

Is this not the most handsome picture of Ethan, or what!!!

Then, there is my sweet, Em! Just beautiful!

We've had a busy weekend. My birthday, getting ready for Mother's Day at church and for Teacher Appreciation Week at school. I'd tell you about it now but my battery is telling me to plug my laptop back in and it's really hard to stand and blog at the same time! (My laptop sits at the kitchen counter/bar)

Just kidding, but I took plenty of pictures and will tell you about our weekend soon.

Have a blessed week! Love, Jen

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Thankful Thursday

This has kinda been a hard week with Ethan and his behavior. It seems that it has been constant disciplining. I'm just worn out. But, I'm going to praise my Lord anyway. So, here goes this weeks Thankful Thursday.

#1. Holy Smokes! Have you tried these? If you've read my blog for any length of time, you would see I love all things chocolate mint. These are really good. I want to lick the tubs when I'm done. I may or may not have done that behind my office door. I'm truly thankful I found these babies!!!

#2. When Ethan was in kindergarten, at the beginning of the year his teacher asked the parents of each student to send $5 so she could purchase snacks for the class for the whole year. This year, Emily's kindergarten teacher does it differently. She sends home the "Snack Bag". If your child comes home with the "Snack Bag", you have to fill it up with snacks and send it the next day with your child.

I have gotten the beloved bag twice and I was giddy and excited each time to make something extra special to send for snacks. However, I didn't notice that I was pretty lucky to get the bags on a Friday, so I had the whole weekend to come up with a snack.

Tuesday night, around 6:30, I opened Emily's back pack and look what I found.

Here's me with said bag. Smiling of all things.
So I rummaged around and remembered that I bought ingredients to try a new recipe I found for Applesauce Muffins. I had to double the recipe and luckily I had everything. They turned out wonderful. I even got a note home from the teacher thanking me for the yummy muffins. I did manage to keep one and have it the next day for a snack at work. They were pretty good if I say so myself.

You can find the recipe here.

#3. My Hubby picked up his new tailored suits he bought a couple of weeks ago. It was such a blessing to me to see him happy and confident in a new suite.

#4. Last but not least, we have decided to take a family vacation this year! A real, let's pack up the car and drive the family somewhere that's not around here, vacation. Yeah! First time, since, well before we had kids. So excited. We're thinking Branson!

Hope everyone has a blessed week! Love, Jennifer