Tag Archives: birthday

Watch Your Rearview

Happy Saturday, friends! How is your weekend going? We are enjoying some fantastic weather over here! I’ve been stuck inside sick for a week now. It has not been fun, but it’s really helped to be able to have the windows open to enjoy the fresh air. Now seemed like a good time to catch up with what’s been happening around here.

Sassy turned 15 a few weeks ago, She had a great birthday that involved a trip to Starbucks in the morning, followed by a surprise pedicure, then lunch with her brother and his fiance who came in town to surprise her. One of her favorite cousins came in town for the party that night. We went to Cheesecake Factory for dinner with her friends and my parents. And then her cousin spent the night. It was a long day, but a good one!

Cheesecake Factory, cousins

Along with turning 15, she was able to get her driver’s permit. It was scary for both of us.

student driver, new driver

Doesn’t she look scared?! She should be. We were practicing in a large, empty parking lot. Then another new driver joined us to do some practicing himself… In a semi truck with a trailer!


Sassy got more nervous, real fast! Ha! Anyway, she did fine and has graduated to a busier area in a nearby park. We are not street ready yet, but maybe soon.

We also had a nice Easter, though it was a quiet one. Sassy was at their dad’s house. Most of the other cousins were out of town, too.

Easter basket, cousins

After church, we headed to my uncle’s ranch for the annual Easter dinner and egg hunt. And playing with cows. Oh my goodness, I could not get enough of them! They were so friendly and cute!

cows, ranch, cattle

And this one with the horns was the most curious, but watch out. If you tried to pet her, those horns would come right at you!

cows, ranch, pond, cattle

The hunt for the $100 egg had to be moved inside due to rain. It was a lot of people running around in a small space trying to find it. My uncle is so sneaky! You just never know where to look. OMG Becky finally found it in a pinecone.

I was so happy for her, but mad at myself. I had touched that pinecone at least twice before she picked it. Ugh! Oh well, there’s always next year. And OMG Becky is now out of the hunt. Once you find the egg, you get a lifetime ban from trying again. It’s very competitive!  =)

You can tell spring has arrived here. It arrived on a Monday. Seriously! It was a Monday that I noticed all the flowering trees had bloomed, So pretty! And it’s been so warm. We have been able to get outside and enjoy several hikes.

hike, lake, woods

hike, lake, woods

I love it! Can’t wait to get back out there. I am also signed up for a race next week that I am not at all prepared for. I signed up just two weeks ago at the intense pleading of a friend. I had hoped to get a few runs in beforehand, but this being sick business has eliminated that option. The best I can hope for at this point is good company and good weather the day of the race and enjoy the walk/run.

When is your next race?

Favorite item at The Cheesecake Factory? I always get the Chicken Piccata, minus the chicken. I can’t help it. It’s that good!

How old were you when you started driving? I was 16. That was the minimum age at the time.


See Ya, December!

How is your New Year going? We are recovering from a busy December.

OMG Becky turned 18 years old. I’m still trying to come to terms with that one.


We celebrated with a family birthday dinner party a few days after her actual birthday.

Birthday spankings on her birthday.

bday2 Dinner with friends the night before.

We went to see Santa at our traditional location.


crown1 crown2 crown3

Dinner with friends on the Country Club Plaza.


We got there a bit early and the place was basically empty. Then within 15 minutes of taking this photo, the entire restaurant was packed! plaza2

It was a Spanish restaurant with amazing tapas and sangria. I can’t wait to go back!

Christmas Eve was a bit different for me this year. I found out that morning I have bronchitis. I was told to stay away from other people as much as possible. And given a mask to wear. That meant I skipped Christmas Eve dinner and church with my family. I did wear my mask and go over for the gift giving and dessert portion of the evening. I didn’t want to miss everything!


Annual Christmas Eve photo of my girls with my nieces and nephews.

There were a few kiddos missing this year.  :-(

Christmas morning, my parents came over for breakfast and to watch my girls open their presents. Then my girls went to their dad’s to celebrate with him for a few days. I usually spend Christmas afternoon at my parents’ house, but stayed home again to keep my germs away.

Our New Year’s Eve was also a quiet one at home. OMG Becky was involved in a car wreck the night before. (It wasn’t her fault and she is recovering. More on that later.) We watched a movie and ordered take-out. We watched the NYC ball drop at 11:00 PM our time and called it a night, but not before we heard our neighbors shooting off fireworks at that time. Apparently, they were on East Coast time, too!

How did you celebrate New Year’s Eve?

Birthday Celebrations x 4

Sassy is breaking my heart. My baby. My little girl turned 14 last week. We had to celebrate and celebrate we did. For four days. It was a long weekend!

Thursday (her actual birthday), she got out of school at lunch time to spend the rest of the afternoon with her siblings. Their brother was in town! He’s a Marine stationed in California. He will be deployed for his second overseas mission later this month. This time to Iraq.

siblings, brother, sisters

How cute are they? I’m so glad they got to spend the afternoon together!

That evening I got her all to myself. We went out for froyo.


She does it all wrong. She got one flavor of froyo, a bunch of candy, including gummy bears, topped it all with white chocolate sauce, and then stirred it all together. Ick! She obviously doesn’t know that you get a few different flavors. (On this day five for me.)  Top it with a few nuts, shredded coconut, and chocolate candies. Proceed to eat one flavor at a time. Perfection!

Back home, I left her open her a few of her gifts before she went to basketball open gym. Her main gift was a pair of running shoes she wanted.

open birthday present, Nike shoes gift

She was more than a little excited about them!

black nike shoes

I can’t say I blame her! They are pretty and they are my size. Hmmm…  She also wanted and received a pair of black and white running shorts to match. She is so my daughter!

With Friday night came more celebrating. We headed to the mall to meet up with Sassy’s best friend and her friend’s mom. The girls both had plans to get their ears pierced. Second holes for both of them. This was something Sassy had been asking to do for a few years. I had put her off, telling to wait until she was in 8th grade. Back then it seemed pretty far off! Either way, it was here and she still wanted it do, so off we went.

getting ears pierced

Sassy sat stone-faced like this the entire time. No flinching at all! I don’t know how she did it. Her BFF was so nervous! She made Sassy go first, but then she ended up thinking it wasn’t a big deal either. Silly girls.

pierced ears, double pierced

We also did a little shopping for the girls’ confirmation dresses. No pictures of the dresses because they are a secret until next month. I will tell you they are lovely!

The birthday festivities continued to Saturday for Sassy’s party with friends. She invited six of her friends over for pizza and an ice cream buffet. She got some great gifts.

birthday girl, teenager

Do you like her tiara? It was a princess party in honor of the new Cinderella movie. After dinner and gifts, we loaded the girls up and went to see the movie. We all really enjoyed it! Well, except maybe my dad. He was disappointed to find out Bruce Willis was not it in.:-/

Sunday was our final day of celebrating. This time it was a family dinner party also celebrating two other birthdays that week. Each birthday boy/girl got his/her own birthday balloon and birthday hats were required for all. The birthday cake was another story. One cake, three candle blowers. This is their reactions after my mom explained the logistics of which candles they were responsible for blowing out. And also that we had to whisper the singing of Happy Birthday to them because my baby niece had just laid down for a nap.

family birthday party, shared cake

You would think between the three of them, they would have gotten all of the candles blown out on the first try. Nope. Sassy let them down and missed one of hers. And we didn’t succeed whisper singing either. Well most of us did, but then my 5-year-old niece got so excited at the end of the song, she screamed out in glee. Ha!

Have you seen the new Cinderella movie? What did you think?

Do you have pierced ears or other parts? My ears are triple pierced, but I hardly ever wear more than one pair of earrings a time. I also have the cartilage at the top of one ear pierced. I always have a flat-back stud in it.

She’s 17, But I Haven’t Aged a Bit.

How is it that December is almost over? It felt like I blinked on Halloween and now suddenly it’s almost the New Year. Crazy.

December included a birthday celebration for my oldest daughter. OMG Becky turned 17 years old. Ugh. I don’t want her to be so close to being an adult. To me it seems such a short time ago that she was my little girl wearing everything pink and wanting me to do her hair.

birthday girl

On second thought, she’s probably right to not let me do her hair anymore.

I took Christmas Eve off from work to get ready for our Christmas festivities. I started out at 6:30 AM with a quick stop at Starbucks for coffee and a breakfast sandwich. Then it was off to store after store… after store. It might not sound like a lot of fun, but I really enjoyed it. There was no traffic, no crowds, no lines. I hit eight stores in two cities and was back home before 11AM. It.was.awesome!

Later was our Christmas Eve traditional candlelight church service with family. Then back to my parents’ house for dinner and gifts.

Eleven of the fifteen grandkids were there. (And a short Christmas tree that is my mom’s absolute favorite ever and she would like to keep up forever. Too bad it’s getting drier and drier by the minute.)

Christmas morning was great! My girls both wanted footie pajamas. Their wish was granted. And they look ridiculous in them, but they love them and that’s all that matters, right.

Sassy loved the sweater I got her with a picture of a boxer on it. Not sure Stella appreciated it.

Sidenote: I discovered the key to keeping Stella out of all the craziness that is Christmas morning package opening… I gave her the first gift of the morning! She got a new squeaky pig and was so excited. She immediately took it to her bed to chew on and had zero interest in what we were doing. Note to self: Make this a tradition!

Today, after all of the busyness that the last week involved, I needed to be outside. OMG Becky and I took Stella to the dog park where we tromped along the muddy trails.

sunset over lake

It was fantastic!

How were your holidays?


My Cake is on Fire

Remember how I told you yesterday that fall foliage is lacking in color here? Take a look…

trail in woods

Yep, that’s as colorful as it gets at the moment.

But don’t think that stopped us from hitting the trails again on Sunday. It did not. Sassy and I were only minutes into our run when she suddenly stopped and turned around to tell me she had just jumped over a snake that she thought was a stick.

snake on trail

A snake! Yuck. I think she startled it as much as it startled her because it was frozen. It’s head was on the left side of the picture. That meant Stella and I had to take it off trail to go around its tail to get past it. Please hold still snake. Please hold still.

I probably don’t have to tell you Sassy was a bit spooked after that. Maybe two minutes later a squirreled jumped off the side of the trail and made her screech. Ha! I couldn’t help but laugh. Bad mom.

I wish I could tell you that was the last only snake we saw on the trial. Nope. Maybe 10 minutes Sassy almost stepped on another one.


Luckily, that one was a bit smaller than the first snake.

baby snake

Such a cute little baby! Not that I tried to cuddle it or anything. Or even try to touch it. That thing could be venomous for all I knew!

After our run, we had to get cleaned up quickly. My parents took us out to dinner for my birthday a day early. We went to my favorite Mexican restaurant. And it was just awesome! Chips, salsa, spinach cheese dip, spinach enchiladas, rice, and beans. All my favorites! Only thing better would have been a margarita, but those make me want to sleep all day. Monday mornings don’t allow that.

Then it was back to my parents’ house for birthday cake and gifts. These two headed for the leftover frosting as soon as we walked in the door! Ridiculous.

Also ridiculous was the amount of smoke these candles put off. I am not kidding when I say I was worried about the smoke alarming being set off.

homemade cookie cake

That homemade cookie cake put me over the edge. So very full. I’m glad my birthday only comes once a year.

Pick your birthday meal! What kind of cake do you want? What restaurant would you eat at?

The Cake That Wasn’t

Today is a big day for somebody! It’s my dad’s birthday!


We celebrated with a barbecue yesterday at my youngest brother’s house. I was in charge of the dessert and had plans for a traditional round, 2-layer cake. Unfortunately, the cake was too moist and crumbled coming out of the pans. No problem! With a few additions, I re-purposed the cake into a scrumptious trifle.

We also had party hats. It’s not a party in this family with out party hats.

Oh my, Myo. She wears it well, don’t you think?

Friday night, I met up with a few co-workers for pedicures and dinner. For the first time ever, I got a little design on my big toe. Verdict? I don’t like it and it’s driving me nuts. And now I know better.

Saturday was the usual half day of work at my parent’s office. Then I had to drop Sassy off at my oldest brother’s house to spend the night. We were surprised to see a boat out on his lake.

boat on lake

It was not the warmest of days.

And then the girls and I started this week out with a hike tonight. Stella insisted on rolling in the leaves often.

And OMG Becky insisted on brushing her off every single time.

Those two are a lot of fun to hike with. If you don’t mind stopping every few yards…

This little scene below freaked non-bird-loving OMG Becky out.

Birds, birds everywhere! Ha!

Tell me about your weekend!


Helpful Competitors

Last night we went to my youngest brother’s house to celebrate his wife’s birthday. And I discovered how helpful my family members are!

There was cake and candles. So many candles, my sister-in-law needed help blowing them out!  ;)

blow out candles

My niece was happy to help her.

There was assistance cleaning the dishes.

lick the spoon

Thanks, Dad!

I spent some time snuggling with my youngest niece and taking pictures of her. Look how good she is at posing for the camera! So helpful!

OMG Becky helped me out and took this picture.

And then things got ugly. We tried to play a little, friendly game of Apples to Apples.

apples to apples

Some of us are much too competitive even at this. And loud. Good night, I am never sitting next to my brother during a game again. I think I lose partial hearing last night!

What’s your favorite board game?