Wednesday, November 3, 2010

I Thought 50 Was the New 30!

Today Merritt celebrates her 50th day of kindergarten with a 50's style sock hop! She looked adorable heading out the door in her purple poodle skirt! I have a lot of educating to do, though! I don't think Merritt has heard that 50 is the new 30!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

What Happened On 9/11, Anyway?

Morgan has become interested in the news. What started as a little girl wanting to see her daddy on TV, has turned into a great interest in what is going on in her world! This summer, she curled up next to me many nights to watch the 10 o'clock news. I quickly realized I always need to have the remote in hand in order to censor what was being broadcast!

So, last night I got the question, "What happened on 9/11, anyway?" My first instinct was to blurt out the fears and questions that we all felt that day. Instead, I kept to the facts. No other questions arose. I think she's digesting it all and more questions will come! Please note, I gave the kid-friendly version, if there is one!

Since her question last night, I have thought back to 9 years ago, like I am sure we all have. The anger, the fear, wishing for the times prior to that awful attack. This year, I'm looking at it completely different. Granted, I wish those events never occurred! But today, I am not missing life before that day, I am missing the America we became after that day! The unity, the compassion for one another. It was a true time in my life where I felt brotherhood! I am still proud to be an American and prouder every day but searching for some unity!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Merritt Crocker

After discovering this apron and chef hat, Merritt decided we needed to do a little baking! I was able to scramble together the ingredients for chocolate chip cookies. Morgan joined us in the kitchen just in time to help lick the bowl. While Merritt was coming up with her plan of serving cookies to her Daddy via Morgan, the waitress, the two sisters got into a disagreement. When Morgan stormed off, Merritt looked at me and replied, "Great! I just lost my waitress!" After telling her she should treat her employees better she responded, "Momma, get a plate!" I think I've been hired!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Great Expectations

"I expect you to do great things with your life. I don't hope it... I don't wish it... I EXPECT you to do great things with your life!"
A childhood friend of mine recently posted this as her facebook status explaining that her daddy prayed this over her and her siblings for many years. Wow! If we all wanted this for one another, what a wonderful world it would be!
My greatest hope or expectation for my girls has been self confidence... that which I have lacked! In their recent production of "The Little Mermaid", I have seen self confidence in action sometimes to the extreme. As neither child needs help with costumes either because they are capable of doing it on their own or have been resourceful enough to "hire" their own staff, Momma spent two weeks backstage helping other children, not her own!
At the close of the production, a weary mother returned home a little saddened that her chicks didn't need much of her only to find a smiling father reminding her, "Isn't this what you have always prayed for?" Yes it is my wise partner and oh how proud I am of our Seaweed and Coral! You lit up the stage and made us all smile and giggle! Great show, girls and Great Expectations your Momma and Daddy have for you! Continue to Shine!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Horse With No Name Has A New Home

This horse has been outside my grandmother's home for as long as I can remember and longer! He was always the first one to greet us and the last one to say goodbye every summer. He might have even been there when my dad was a little boy! When my grandmother passed away, my aunt asked me if there was anything I would like from her house. As we said our goodbyes on my grandmother's driveway, I looked over at the familiar horse and said, "I would love to have the horse!"
Aunt Donna said, "Well, take him now!" We went to work digging him up! I was so proud to bring him home. I'm embarrassed to admit that he's sat in my garage for two years. He's been a steady friend, greeting us each evening and telling us goodbye each morning but I'm proud to report that he now does it with more height and strength. He's found a spot in our flowerbed by our kitchen door which is the door that all our friends and loved ones enter. How proud I am that the horse that greeted my grandparents' friends and loved ones now greets mine! So, special horse, you might not have a name but you definitely have a home and many, many memories! Welcome Home!

Another Year of Violin

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

This Little Girl Has Big Plans

Last night as I was helping the girls get ready for bed Merritt said, "I can do it all by myself! I'm growing up, Momma and one day I'm going to be a beauty shop owner so I need to start doing everything by myself!" Go for it sister!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Momma Needs A Hobby, That's Why!

After seeing a Facebook posting by a friend telling about her art teacher starting a beginner painter class, I found myself enrolled! I've always loved art and beamed when 3 year old Morgan started telling everyone she wanted to be an artist when she grew up, and a firefighter! I think if I had to answer the question, "If you could do anything, what would it be?" I would answer, "Be an artist." A children's book illustrator to be exact. Not sure why I never took any art classes other than an elective in high school and an Art History class in college. I guess it didn't seem practical and I was afraid I had no talent. Anyway, 2 months later, I have completed my first still life and have begun a landscape. I'm not sure that I have talent but I really look forward to my weekly class.

The girls have found interest in this new outlet of mine! I think they aren't sure why Momma is starting something new. When I brought my still life home, Merritt asked, "Why are you taking a painting class?" Before I could answer, Morgan quickly responded, "Merritt, Momma needs a hobby, that's why! All she does is sit around the house while we are at school! She needed to find something to do while we were gone!" Oh, my! I couldn't even respond to that one! Rest assured, for the rest of the week, I made sure Morgan knew what I had done while she was at school!

Times ~ They Are A Changin'!

We recently received the news that Merritt would be attending her sister's elementary school next year for kindergarten! We are all so proud of Merritt for scoring so well in the testing process not only because it will make carpool simpler on Momma but also so she can have the same experiences her sister has had! Shortly after the excitement, reality set in!

No longer will it be Morgan's school! Morgan is proud of Merritt but not sure she wants to share the school with her! It all came to blows Friday morning when we helped Morgan get to class with some snacks. As we were walking to the classroom a 5th grade girl none of us recognized waved and said, "Hi, Merritt!" Morgan quickly shot me a look as if saying, "Are you kidding me, Momma! I don't even know her!" I asked Merritt if she knew who the girl was and she said, "No, but everybody knows my name!" Aunt Amy might have to offer some counsel this summer on how to handle a little sister in the same school! What Morgan doesn't realize is the next 3 years will be a blink to her mother and the next time these two will be in school together will be when Merritt is a freshman and Morgan is a senior! Reality sure does stink! Just when I thought the two sisters would never share another kind word or look, I walked in on them after church to find.....

Big sister teaching little sister how to read! I guess she decided if she has to share the school with Merritt, she might as well make sure she's the smartest in her class!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A Snowy Day ~ An ArtBreak Entry

A story Merritt wrote at school was entered in a local student's art festival, ArtBreak. Her teacher gave me a copy of the story today. Morgan also had a literary work entered this year. They are both excited to go to the festival this weekend and see their stories on display!

A Snowy Day
by Merritt Hughes
One cold February day it snowed. I thought it was good. My grandparents brought my family a sled that they saved for a very long time. They were waiting for it to snow so we could use the sled. My sister and I went sledding in the front yard. We got on the sled and my daddy used the rope to pull us. My daddy is really strong. There is a little tree in the front yard that we tried to go around together, but we fell in the snow. My sister tried to go around the tree by herself and she didn't fall! Then I tried it by myself and I didn't fall, either! We were outside playing on the sled for a long time. We were getting really cold so we went inside and had some hot chocolate. It was a fun day.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

She's So Black and White!

The girls and I stopped by my grandmother's to visit this afternoon. She had some old photos of her out to show me and the girls. I showed Merritt one of the photographs of my grandmother when she was barely 20. She was standing outside with two young cousins of hers. As you can imagine, it was a black and white photo. As I showed it to Merritt I said, "Look how beautiful Ms. Jo is in this picture! She's so young and pretty!" As Merritt peered over the photo, her face quickly changed to shock and surprise as she exclaimed, "And she's so black and white!" We laughed and laughed while explaining that Ms. Jo was a grown woman before she got her colors! Later, when we left, Merritt told Ms. Jo, "I'm so glad that you are colorful now!"

If You Can't Decorate the House, Decorate Cookies!

Other than Christmas, I don't decorate our house for other holidays. Too much effort, I guess. I have a feeling Merritt is going to change that! She has been asking for weeks about decorating our house for Easter. I've put her off as long as I could. While visiting my grandmother today, Scott got our Easter decorations out. When we returned home and I saw the sad little pile of eggs and broken baskets, I knew I had to come up with something good!

"If you can't decorate your house, decorate cookies!"

The girls had a great time making the dough and rolling it out!
They especially loved icing and decorating them, though!

They even made 'M' shaped cookies. Purple for Morgan.

And pink for Merritt, of course!

They did a nice job and Momma enjoyed finishing the job when they got tired. We have plenty to share if Daddy doesn't eat them all tonight!
It was a fun diversion to house decorating but I'm sure I'll be hitting the after Easter sales to satisfy next year's decorating adventures!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Morgan's 2nd grade class presented the play "How Does Your Garden Grow?" It was great! All the children did such a great job!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

What Are You Giving Up?

Several weeks ago after "letting the good times roll", our family attended a Shrove Tuesday Pancake dinner at church. It was hosted by the Children's Ministry team and was a great way for the girls to learn more about the Lenten Season. One of our ministers answered questions from the children and parents and suggested that in addition to giving up something, we give back as well!

The girls participated in several activities but their favorite was sponsored by the Prayer Ministry. In private they were able to write down, or draw a picture of one of their sins and then nail it to the cross. That night the sins were burned and used the next day in the Ash Wednesday service.

On the way home we discussed what we could all give up and/or give back. Morgan joked about giving up playing with Merritt but settled on giving up Sprite while encouraging her daddy to join her by giving up Coke. He agreed and has probably already lost 10 pounds much to my dismay! Merritt decided to give up being mad and has had a little difficulty sticking to it but only when things don't go her way! I decided to give up using my cell phone in the car thanks to Oprah and her No Phone Zone campaign. I'm giving back by being a safer driver as well as spending more quality time in the car with the girls! They were both quick to let me know that I was always on the phone while driving!

Morgan even made me this sign to keep in the car to remind me while they are at school! So far we have fulfilled our obligations! The girls and Dad are anxious to get back to Sprite, Coke and being mad but Momma's car will forever be a No Phone Zone, at least for the driver (see sign)!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Birthday Wishes Do Come True!

How lucky can you be? Celebrating your 44th birthday while watching with 150 million others as the New Orleans Saints make history! Thank goodness for King Cake and birthday wishes!

The smoke was still in the air from Scott's birthday candles when the Saints began to take control of Super Bowl 44!

The girls had a great time cheering on the Saints with their Daddy!


Merritt says, "Who Dat's #1!"

What an amazing night! I'll never forget where I was for Super Bowl 44 or how I celebrated Scott's 44th birthday! Drew Brees woke up this morning and asked his wife, "Did it really happen?" I Believe Dat it happened and as I continue to hear weather reports expecting 3 inches of snow this week I'm beginning to believe the old saying about if the Saints ever win the Super Bowl what might freeze over!