Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Just a little off the side

Gray got a long-overdo haircut last night and instead of taking our usual DIY approach, I took him to our friend Erica. He sat very still (thank you Sesame Street podcasts) and I must say the result is way better than mommy and daddy's skills. This picture doesn't really show off his new do, but I found it on my camera and had to share the adorable snapshot.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Monster Jam 2012

On Sunday, we took in Monster Jam again with Luke, Holten and Grayson. Luke had asked to go again this year as part of his birthday, so we made an afternoon of it. Suzanne got us amazing seats and the boys were mesmerized once again.

Gray watching Grave Digger while holding Grave Digger 

Luke & Gray cheering on their favorite drivers 

Megasaurous eating a car in half. That's right, in half.

Holt isn't sure about all of this 

Ground Pounder showin' how it's done. 

Iron Man catching some air

Two generations of cousins after the show

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Happy Birthday Luke!

We've had a busy week between helping Amy and her family move in, hosting Pappa, and Michael and I taking several work trips. Michael's flight home from Louisville got cancelled Friday night and he ended up getting as far as Dallas and then renting a car. When he finally arrived home around 1 a.m., we were both really ready for the weekend.

There wasn't much rest for the weary because this was Luke's birthday weekend. We went to his party on Saturday and celebrated Gray's big cousin turning five. The party was at a gymnastics play place so the kids ran between the ball pit, moon bounce, slides and more. Here are a few of the highlights:

Practicing his balance 

Just hanging around 

He went down this slide no less than 20 times 

Baby Jack checking out the festivities 

It's fun to see Luke's friends grow from year to year, and this time Holten got to join in the celebration as well. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


My sister Amy and her family have arrived! They moved from North Carolina back to Oklahoma this week and I can't believe they are actually here to stay. After nearly a decade apart, I now live less than a mile from both of my sisters. Crazy!

Amy and I took the boys out to dinner and to run some errands tonight, and even though both kiddos we're pretty amped up to be together, it was fun having that impromptu family time.

Since the boys are so close in age, we got a taste of what it would be like to have twins. Suffice it to say, I have a new respect for mothers of multiples!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


A few recent topics of conversation from our daily lives with Grayson:

  • It snowed overnight on Sunday and when Gray woke up and saw it he told Michael, "Daddy we need to get the Christmas tree out. It's Christmastime again already!" When Michael told him it wasn't time for Christmas yet, Gray said, "But there's snow on the ground?!"
  • My sister Amy and her family are moving from North Carolina back to Oklahoma this week (yay!) and Gray has been talking a lot about his cousin Holten coming to live in Norman and going to his preschool. He gets really serious and says, "Mama, I want Holt to be my brother." Every time I try to explain that it's not negotiable, but they are cousins and that's really special too. Then I ask if Gray wants Holt to live with us and share his toys, and he quickly changes his mind about the whole brother thing.
  • Gray's latest obsessions are asking people if they are his best friend, Batman, what it means to be a stranger (including telling people they are strangers to their face when we're in public...nice) and houses with Christmas lights getting tickets from the police (yes, I'm still answering 20 questions about this every time we see a house with lights on it).

Monday, February 13, 2012

Grand Fun

Gray spent Saturday night at Grandmama and Granddaddy's house so Michael and I could enjoy a date night. He took the opportunity to go through my mom's old classroom books and picked out a handful of new books on space, trees and weather. Forget the fiction, I swear this kid loves science as much as his parent do. 

Grandmama also helped Gray make a Valentine for us. They rolled strips of pink paper around a pencil and glued them to a heart. So cute!

Then it was time to play a matching domino game. We play a similar game at home with a set of old wooden dominoes that were mine as a child. Instead of numbers/dots, they have animals painted on them that you match up. Our games usually end the same way as the one below...with the dominoes turning into a road for cars at the end. 

Friday, February 10, 2012

Hello Weekend

It's the weekend and I could not be happier. Our house is a mess, we have a limited food supply for the impending snowstorm and my windshield cracked on the way home tonight, but all I can think about is the fact that it's Friday and the world is ripe with possibility. All I feel like doing is daydreaming out a train window. Maybe curling up by the fire will do the trick instead.

I hope you all have an awesome weekend!

Monday, February 6, 2012

All Aboard!

This weekend we took Grayson on the Heartland Flyer, an Amtrak train that runs from Oklahoma City to Fort Worth, TX. We were all pretty excited since none of us had ever been on a train. I made the mistake of telling Gray about it a week too soon so the anticipation had been building.

We boarded at the Norman, OK station which is a small renovated historic depot that now serves as a charming local art gallery as well. We planned to meet up with Nana and Popper who were driving from Houston to Fort Worth to meet us and hand over Michael's new SUV (he'd purchased it from a dealership in Houston about a week ago).

Having worked in the tourism industry, I'd always heard great things about the Heartland Flyer. Their crew has been voted best in customer service for the entire Amtrak system, and after meeting three of them in-person, I can see why. They were absolutely delightful and made our experience even more memorable. Here are a few of the highlights:

 Here comes the train!

Daddy & Gray pick out good seats on the upper level of the second car. We felt like we had the car all to ourselves.

 Mommy & Gray checking out the reclining features.

Plenty of time for silliness. 

Right before we pulled into the station, we thought Gray might take a nap. It didn't last, but the seats were comfortable enough to fall asleep.

I loved seeing sides of places you don't get to experience from the interstate. It's everything from mobile homes and junk that's been dumped by the tracks to perfectly preserved small-town depots on Main Street America and amazing landscapes that you can only access from the tracks. Both of these pictures are somewhere in the Arbuckle Mountains.

Once we pulled into the station, we met up with Nana and Popper, and Michael (finally) got to see the car we purchased a week earlier.

His new baby...there are already plans in the works for modifying it. Surprise surprise.

After an awesome steak lunch in Fort Worth's Historic Stockyards, we walked around some of the shops and picked up a cowboy had for Gray.

On the way back to the car, we passed this big guy. Gray couldn't wait to sit on him and then once he was up there he immediately wanted down. 

We absolutely fell in love with train travel and can't wait to go on a longer trip up one of the coasts or somewhere we can experience sleeping and dining cars, plus take in some epic scenery from the panoramic windows.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Progress Report

As time passes, it's easy to forget some of the New Year's resolutions we set out to accomplish just a few weeks ago. I was talking to someone about this at work and had to stop and think for a second about how we were doing.

Despite not really thinking about them day-to-day, we have made some headway on our goals.
  • Take more day trips and weekend getaways. 
    • We've had a spontaneous (and freezing) picnic at the park
    • This weekend we're planning a day trip on the Heartland Flyer (our local Amtrak train that goes to Fort Worth, TX). Gray is gonna flip out with excitement!
  • Break out of our usual dinner lineup.
    • I tried a great spinach enchilada recipe from Real Simple and have incorporated some stir fry meals into our routine that seems to be a hit. I also have a new pumpkin dump cake recipe from Michael's side of the family that I plan to make soon. I've been checking out recipes on Pinterest, but find myself saving desserts instead of dinner ideas. Oops! 
  • Tackle some of the major home improvement projects we've been talking about for years. 
    • Michael is helping our architect friend Jack with some graphic design work, so we're bartering for his space planning expertise on our master bathroom. We met with Jack to talk through our ideas and measure the space a couple of weeks ago and he's drawing up several options to gut and remodel the whole thing. I'm excited to see what he comes up with, but am also nervous about seeing what it's going to cost.
  • Make specific plans to nurture our passions and hobbies:
    • Michael
      • Mike started a four-month upholstery class this week that meets a couple of evenings a week. Despite being the only male in the class (and one of the few under the age of 50), he thinks he's going to enjoy it. 
      • I've heard some talk amongst his buds about planning some regular mountain biking dates soon.
    • Lindsay
      • Other than trying to update my blog more often, I haven't done much to nurture my writing and I sure haven't dusted off my tennis racket. 
    • Gray
      • We've been taking Gray to the weekly music classes at our local library. He really seems to enjoy them and he talks about them all week. 
Of course, my personal resolutions are probably the most neglected out of everything. In the evenings, I end up doing things like our taxes instead of nurturing my interests. I need to get better about that.

Even though we've done fairly well overall (for only being a month into 2012), I'm sure our resolutions will slip further to the back of our minds if we're not careful. That's why I'm going to post them on our fridge or somewhere visible so we'll stay accountable and also take time to acknowledge our accomplishments. How are you all doing on your resolutions?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Christmas Consequences

This was my conversation with Grayson in the car on the way home from his school a few nights back:

Gray: Does that house still have its Christmas light on it?
Me: Yes, sometimes people leave their lights on even when Christmas is over.
Gray: They need to take them down or the firemen will get them.
Me: The firemen? Like Uncle Levi?
Gray: Yes, Uncle Levi will come in a BIG fire truck and get them. And he'll wear a hat.
Me: Did you know he has a fireman's hat with his name on it?
Gray: Yes, his hat says Uncle Levi.

I didn't have the heart to tell him that the fire department doesn't call him Uncle Levi. He can figure that out some other day.

For those of you with Christmas lights still on the house...consider yourself warned. The fire department may be paying you a visit. There will be big trucks and hats. It won't be pretty.