Thursday, April 24, 2008


It's been a while since I posted. Besides taking care of my own five kids with homework and ballgames plus three more kids, I've planned a bridal shower, partied with the family, celebrated a wedding, my baby-man turned 2, and went to Lord of the Dance with my mother.
The highlight was the wedding. My brother, Greg, married Nancy on Saturday. It was a gorgeous day for an outside wedding. The weather was perfect.
My mother made a video for them.

I just checked my mom's blog. She put together another video with a few pictures she took on the "big day". I've never done a link before, so I hope this works. If not, look to your left at my favorite blogs and click on Belle.

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Great Mayo Debate

When we were first married, Bobby and I quickly realized that we had very different views on Mayonnaise. I love REAL Mayo. Yummy, rich, creamy. Bobby prefers the tangy zip of Miracle Whip. Ew! I have from time to time struggled through a tuna salad or sandwich made with it. But not happily.
During the first couple of years it was "The Great Debate." We would even question dinner guests such as the missionaries or friends on their opinion. Always to mixed reviews. One missionary even told us that he did not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip. He wanted to keep it that way so that he could go with whatever his future wife prefered. Smart man.
For years I tried to win Bobby over to the Mayo side, until one day I read the nutritions labels.
Real Mayo - 10 grams of fat per Tbsp
Light Miracle Whip - 1.5 grams of fat per Tbsp
Well, with news like that, I happily left Bobby alone about his Miracle Whip and we have been buying both ever since.
This afternoon, I decided a tuna salad sandwich would be great for lunch. So as I was boiling the eggs, I prepared the rest of the salad. I scrapped the bottom of the mayo jar and it wasn't enough, so I opened the pantry door and grabbed the new jar Bobby picked up at the grocery store on Friday. I knew that he bought one jar of Miracle Whip and one jar of Mayo. So, I grabbed the mayo.
I opened the jar and scooped out the mayo. Immediately, I knew it was not the real stuff I craved. It was too thin. I looked at the front of the jar and it said "Light". Now, light is definitely not the same as "real". So, I finished my tuna salad with what I had. I am sure that when choosing the "light" variety, Bobby had only the best intentions. Light should be better for me and he was probably concerned about long-term health. I won't even mention it to him because he is out of town this week and he loves me enough to go grocery shopping and buy mayo with less fat.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Goodbye Michael....Hello David

Last night we said good-bye to Michael Johns on American Idol. He has been one of my favorites from the beginning. Him and Brooke. I never understood why everyone went crazy for David Archuleta. Until this week. After this performance of "Angels" I am now a fan.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Not One, But Two

Yesterday, my sweet little boy was sick again. I asked my teenage neighbor to come over and sit with him so that I could run to the grocery store to pick up some medicine and a few groceries. Milk, bread, ground meat, etc. Just a few things.
Matthew, Nathan and Kaylie accompanied me. We proceeded to the checkouts and I noticed that the Express Lane was definitely the shortest line. So I quickly counted my items to see if I could choose that line. I had 12 items and the Express Lane said 10 items or less.
I can't stand it when I go to an express lane and the person in front of me obviously has gone way over the limit, especially when I am in a hurry. So I chose the lane next to the express lane and waited patiently. It really wasn't a long line and soon I was the next person in line. While I waited for the customer in front of me to be rung up, I lowered the front of my basket for check-out. (It's hard to explain if you've never seen this kind of shopping basket.)
The cashier in the express lane called out to me, "I can get you over here."
I replied that I had too many groceries. Again, she beckoned me over. So, I started to back up my basket to move her to lane. As soon as I had moved a few inches a gallon of milk toppled out and busted on the floor. It didn't just start leaking out of the top, the whole side busted open. Lovely. I picked up the container and handed it the cashier. The cashier from the express lane immediately started apologizing. I just said, "It was not you. This is not your fault." Still feeling guilty, and because she had no one in her lane anyway, she ran over to help.
Somehow, she knocked over the 2nd gallon of milk. Which did like the first and busted the side open, splashing onto Nathan's pants and shoes. She picked it up and put it back in my basket where it was now pouring milk onto some of my other groceries. Now I am thinking, "Okay, that one was your fault."
We emptied a roll of paper towels onto the mess while we waited for the mop. As the milk traveled under the candy racks and started being absorbed by the cardboard displays, we still waited for the mop. So they started moving the candy racks out of the way. Apparently, they had to rinse the mop out first.
Nathan kept running back and forth between our lane and the next to watch the milk as it traveled. Don't feel bad for him because he got splashed, he found the whole thing pretty hilarious. I agreed with him and could see the humor at that moment so I grabbed my camera and took a quick shot. The manager, who found the whole thing less funny than we did, gave me a puzzled look so I quickly tucked the camera back into my purse.
They moved me to another lane to check out while they cleaned up the mess. The cashier asked me if I wanted some more milk. I said, "No, I think I've had enough milk for today." She insisted that I needed some milk for my kids. "Okay." So, a very nice young man walked to the back and got two gallons of milk for me and gave them directly to the cashier. Apparently we weren't taking anymore chances.
So here to the cashiers and management that were still mopping up two gallons of milk as I loaded up my van and drove away.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


Kansas City was so much fun.

We stayed with Bobby's aunt and uncle in their new house. The boys loved the basement where we stayed. It was a "Man Room." It really was pretty cool. A 96 inch High Definition Projector TV, with surround sound that was built into the walls. Then when Uncle Dale started a movie, by remote control the lights dimmed at the same time the movie started. It was like being in a movie theater. The sofa even rumbled with the surround sound!

On Friday, Andrew was a bundle of nerves. We could not get him to relax. He lost his first match, won his second, then lost his third. It was pretty neat that kids in his bracket were from places like Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Arkansas and Idaho.

By Saturday, the Andrew we know and love was back. It was his day off of the competition (while the High School kids wrestled). So, we had a great time playing. We went site seeing at some outdoor stores and met up with some friends that live in the area. We went shopping at T-Rex, a dinosaur themed restaurant. It was really cool, we "built" a toy dinosaur for Spencer's bday, Andrew and Shawn "dug" for dinosaur bones and "explored" a mine".

Then we met up with the other wrestlers at Dave and Busters. The kids had a blast. They told us the wait time for a table was 2 HOURS! So, we played first and then ate. By the end of dinner Shawn (who can fall asleep anywhere) fell asleep at the table.

Sunday. The All-American Rounds and the Finals. The competition started with over 1500 kids and now the top 8 in each bracket were competing. Each kid only wrestled once on Sunday. Andrew was wrestling for 7th or 8th. They started the morning with a parade of the All-Americans. The lights were dimmed, smoke machines, loud music, colored-lights going everywhere. It was a neat environment for the kids, but for the spectators it made it hard to see the kids on the floor.
Andrew wrestled a little boy from Idaho. I had a good seat to videotape the match from, but I couldn't see the scoreboard. At the end of each round, I would look over to a man sitting a few seats to my left so he could tell me the score.
Round 1 0-0
Round 2 0-0
It was a real nail-biter.
Round 3 The man called out. 5-1. Your boy won!

WAHOO!!!! 7th Place

Then the top 8 from his bracket head to the theater where the awards podium is set up. While we waited, Bobby told me that the boy from Idaho is LDS! We knew they were from Idaho and Bobby took the chance and just asked him. I of course thought "Wow! That's pretty cool!" But, I don't think they thought it was as neat as we did. I mean come on, we are from the South. The only LDS wrestler we saw all year, is in our ward. We really enjoy meeting other Mormons just by chance.

Andrew's teammate, a 6th grader from Sulphur, won 1st place in his bracket. A National Champion!

We flew to Houston Sunday evening and made it home by 1 am. Andrew and Shawn made it back around 3 pm yesterday. Just in time for us to get ready and head to the ball park. :( Brian plays T-Ball. He lost 32-9. Andrew's team lost 12-0. Shawn plays Thurs
day and we are hoping for better results. :)

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Blessing #11

I am so thankful for my health.

After the kids' stomach bugs (also shared by the kids that I babysit, their parents, my parents and my in-laws) and Bobby who never seemed like he was going to get better. He would start doing better then we thought he got the stomach virus which lingered on... He is on his way to the Dr. for the 7th time in three and a half weeks (turns out he had a secondary infection).

I just didn't have time to be sick. I have truly been blessed. No stomach virus, no cold. A few headaches, but that's okay. I am just thankful that with everything else going on we did not have to deal with me being sick.

Leaving on a jet plane......

Headed to Kansas City! Wrestling season isn't quite over for us yet. Andrew is going to a national tournament this weekend. I personally have mixed feelings about this. We went to Kansas in February and Andrew got whooped. Bobby rationalized that it was the hardest bracket in the whole tournament (according to the people who make the brackets, everyone was a state finalist the year before & one kid won nationals). It was also Andrew's first tournament of the season and the other kids were on their 6th or 7th.

It is a lot of money for plane tickets and entry fees. I had to arrange child-care for my little ones and the ones I baby-sit. I REALLY don't want to go all that way to see him lose every match! He does practice very hard and does well in the tournaments HERE, but I believe we as a state are not up to par with the Mid-West.

On the other hand, he is now at his peak, where in February he was just getting started for the season.
And for some reason they scheduled TWO national tournaments on the same weekend. Which means a lot of the kids will be in Iowa. That should cut the competition in half, right?

So I am going with the attitude that anything can happen. I just need to enjoy the experience. Who knows we could come back saying that he is stronger for the experience and will do better next year, or we could come back with a champion. We have no idea who the competition is or what to expect from them. When we go to the tournaments here, we get to know the kids and their families and some matches can be predicted. We'll see what happens!


It's been a while since I've updated my wrestling posts. And I know you are all dying to know how it's going since no one ever comments on the wrestling posts. ;) But I need to write it down lest I should forget.
Andrew went to the State wrestling tournament on March 22nd. Just to recap, Andrew has been doing pretty well this season. Only losing to one wrestler, whom I have nicknamed "George". George won the first three weeks. Then Andrew won the next two. We figured he was on a roll and had a pretty good shot at winning state, although it would not be easy.
Andrew took 2nd at state. George won 1st. I was okay with this, because they are both very tough wrestlers and it could have gone either way. Andrew likes to bring up the fact that our household had been passing around the stomach bug again that weekend and he probably wasn't up to par. Either way I am extremely proud of Andrew for having such a wonderful season.

During Spring Break, Andrew's coach hosted a wrestling camp featuring world-class Coach Rob Hermann. I was impressed when I saw his credentials.

Rob Herman
• 1996 Head Coach- U.S. Olympic Team
• 2000 Asst. Head Coach- U.S. Olympic Team
• 1991 & 1995 Head Coach- U.S. Military Team
• 1995 Head Coach- Pan American Wrestling Team
• 1992 & 1996 USA Wrestling Coach of the Year
• 2000- Present All Navy Wrestling Team
• World Cup Silver Medalist (wrestler)
• 4 time U.S. Open Champion (wrestler)
• 3 time World Team Member (wrestler)

I was excited that he was going to get to work with such a great coach and not have to travel very far.
After the first day of the camp, Bobby picked Andrew up and was talking to another dad there while they waited. Apparently, they found out and it was confirmed that George's father and another parent with George's team had this coach, Rob Hermann, watch tapes of the kid's wrestling so that he could give them pointers.

I couldn't believe it. It was almost funny. These parents needed an olympic coach to watch tapes of Andrew wrestling so that he could tell an 11 year old how to beat him. We have truly entered the world of competitive sports!
So does this change my newly found good feelings towards George's dad? Nope. I was just dumbfounded that they would take it so seriously. :) And it does make Andrew feel better.

Anyway, just when I thought wrestling season was over it lingers on....

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Rock Band

Yesterday was my sister-in-law's birthday. My brother called and invited us over for cake, ice cream and to play with her new birthday present. He got her "Rock Band" for the XBOX. It comes with a microphone (to satisfy those who love to karoke), a lead guitar and drums.

What we love about it, is that you can have up to four people rocking together at the same time. My niece is really good at the guitar. We were doing great on the "Easy" setting so decided to give "Medium" a try with my niece on guitar and me on drums. Still, we did pretty good. So, I tried guitar and she took the drums and we failed, miserably. We did that twice.
In the end we decided that if we ever start our own rock band, she'll play guitar and I'll take the drums. :)
It was a fun evening, even though my little one broke a decorative glass bowl just minutes after we arrived. :(