Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas in Georgia

After checking out the loot from Santa, it was time to pack up and make the 3 hour drive to Georgia to my grandmother's house. We had fun seeing all of our family. The kids got to open more presents and the adults played dirty santa. I some how managed to make it through the day without taking many pictures. I don't know what I was thinking! Anyway, here are the few that I did take....

For My Family In Georgia...

This year Paul and Candace decided to stay home on Christmas day and spend the day with Candace's family. I shot some video of Chloe opening her presents from our family in Georgia so they could see her. You will notice she says a few words, the first time I've been able to catch her talking on video!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas Day

Christmas Day was great. The kids slept until 7:15, which is unheard of on Christmas morning around my house. We had to hurry and check out the Santa goodies, then get ready to head for Georgia. Santa must have thought both kids were good this year because he brought them just about everything they asked for. After much persuasion, I decided it would be okay if he brought Kaylyn the computer she wanted. I had already said no to the cell phone, so I caved just a little on the computer, with the stipulation that it had to have all kinds of parental blocks on it! Santa brought Luke some trucks, a remote control car, and some hunting cloths. He had asked for (more) trains, but I told Santa we already had enough train tracks and cars to build our own Polar Express!

Stay tuned for Georgia Pics...

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Eve

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas! We had a wonderful time spending Christmas with family. We started the holiday at my parents' house for lunch on Christmas Eve. This year we combined get-togethers for my grandmother's and my parent's into one big lunch. The kids loved opening all those presents at one time!

After leaving my parent's house, I had to work until 11:00 on Christmas Eve. Chris took the kids to his parents' house. He had the fun times of getting them to bed on Christmas Eve by himself :) They were so excited and off the hook! Luckily they were sound asleep with visions of sugarplums dancing in their head by the time I made it home, around midnight. They must have been exhausted, because they slept until 7:15 Christmas morning! I had to wake them up so they could see what Santa had brought them! After playing with their toys for awhile, we packed up and headed to Georgia to celebrate Christmas at my other grandmother's house. Whew! What an exhausting few days.
Here are a few pics from Christmas Eve. I'll have to post the rest of them over the next few days....
Waiting patiently to open presents! They were so excited!

"You'll shoot your eye out, kid..." Yes, my dad got Luke his very own Red Ryder BB gun! Although, not the "carbine-action two hundred shot range model air rifle." Luke was so excited. He's been sucked into my family's hunting obsession. He also go some camo and orange gear to go with it. Don't worry, the BB gun is locked up, the key is hidden and he's not allowed to shoot it unsupervised.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

CraneWorks Christmas Party

Yesterday, the kids and I met Chris at the CraneWorks Christmas party. We had the BEST time! There was lots of good food, a live band, Santa Claus came for a visit, jump houses for the kids, and autograph signings by Jay Barker, John Parker Wilson, and Sara Evans. I think the last count of those attending the party was around 2500. It was SO crowded in that warehouse!The kids and Santa Claus

My kids have been branded by CraneWorks!

Luke in the jump house

The kids and John Parker Wilson. He saw me trying to get a good pic of him signing their autographs and offered to bring them around the table to pose for a pic.

Sara Evans sang for about half the party.....

....and then was nice enough to pose for a pic!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Kacharos Family Christmas Party

Saturday night we had The Kacharos Family Christmas party at my parent's house. It was so great to see all of my family together in one house.....approximately 50 of them! With all of these little ones, we just keep growing and growing! We had lots of good food and good times.

Monday, December 21, 2009

First Visit To The Eye Doctor

Lately I've noticed Luke squinting and pulling his books closer to his face when reading. Since, (a) he's never been to the eye doctor, and (b) I had the WORST vision before LASIK (seriously, couldn't read the big "E" on the Snellen chart), I decided we'd better have it checked out. Luckily he read 20/20 on the chart, so no need for glasses. However, she did say his eye muscles are a little weak, causing him to have difficulty focusing on small print. She gave us some exercises to do everyday to help strengthen these muscles and we should see some improvement before too long.
As you can see he was scared to death. He kept asking if they were going to cut his eyeballs out! Luckily he managed to make it through, with both eyes in tact!

Kaylyn is up next. Hopefully we'll get the same good news. Fingers crossed for no glasses! Praying my kids don't inherit my bad eyesight!

P.S. Sorry this pic is not the best in the world. I forgot my camera so the only pics I have are compliments of my iPhone, whose battery was dying.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Gingerbread Houses!

The kids are now out of school for their Christmas break. They are WILD with Christmas excitement! In order to contain some of that energy, I decided to let them decorate their own gingerbread houses this year. They LOVED it and were occupied for HOURS....while I was locked in my room wrapping Christmas presents!

We've had a busy weekend, and a busy week ahead. Saturday night we had our family Christmas party and today we had the kids' Christmas play at church. This week we will be going to Chris' Christmas party at work, then Christmas Eve at my parent's house, then, of course, there's Christmas day. We will be going to Georgia to my Grandmother's house on Christmas day. Whew! Exhausting! More pics to come....just playing catch-up...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Luke's Version of Jingle Bells

He really thinks these are the words. He says the same thing EVERY.SINGLE.TIME! I'm not sure what he's saying at the end. I think he's learned to speak Russian in his sleep!

Merry Christmas, From UAB School of Nursing!

It's official! I'm finished with school! I took my last final last week and grades were posted today and I am DONE! What a R-E-L-I-E-F!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

One Year Ago Today.....

One year ago today, our family received an early Christmas miracle. On December 15, 2008, just after her first birthday, Chloe received bilarteral Choclear Implants and we were told this child, who was diagnosed with profound hearing loss at 5 months old, WOULD be a hearing child! Chloe would no longer live in a world of silence, but she would hear all of the beautiful sounds of the world around her! Do you realize what a miracle this is???Here she is one year later. This little girl who was once silent, now babbles, squeals, laughs, and screams constantly! She is learning new words everyday and will attempt to repeat most of what she hears. Miss Priss has also started the two year old-age-of-a-million-questions phase. She will point and ask "What's this?" She notices everything around her, pointing and saying "LOOOOOOKKKK!!!" Little Miss Indepence is learning to put her "ears" (it's what we call her processors) on by herself. Whenever a coil falls off, she can get it back in place by herself. Everytime I see her, I can't help but think, "what a miracle...."

Her "Hearing Birthday" is actually the day she was activated, December 31, 2008. So on New Year's Eve, 2009, she will celebrate her first "hearing birthday." Here is a video from activation day, the first time she heard voices....

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Happy Birthday Chloe!!

Today we had Chloe's second birthday party. I can't believe she's two year's old already! She is growing up so fast! She is continuing to do well with her speech and learning new words everyday. Miss Priss has become quite the little boss lately. She will quickly tell you "NO!" or "MOVE!" or "STOP!" and "QUIT!" She's also perfected the "evil eye" which she uses when she's being the boss! She had so much fun at her birthday party and loved playing with all of her cousins. This little girl was so busy and had no time to pose for pictures today!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Ready For Christmas!

At least my blog is ready for Christmas! As for the rest of my crazy life....notsomuch. School is winding down....only 6, yes S-I-X MORE DAYS!!!!! I'm am so ready for it to be over. In the mean time, I'm writing 2 papers and getting ready for finals.....

The kids are great. They're just getting ready for Christmas and getting more excited by the day. Darling Daughter has now started receiving texts to MY PHONE! It's pretty sad that I have to relay text messages to my 8 year old. And I'm just the meanest mother in the world because I won't let her have her own cell phone, because you know "all her friends have one." She also informed me tonight that she needed her own email address. Just another thing which earned me the Meanest Mommy Of The Year Award. Ohhh, I don't know what I'm going to do with that one....

Stay tuned for our annual 52 Family Christmas get-togethers.... I'm already tired!!! Pictures coming soon, I promise!!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Today I am thankful for....


I am so blessed to have two healthy, happy, and beautiful kids! I am also thankful for my family, my health, my home, heat in my home, clothes to wear, food to eat, a job to go to, and the list goes on.... These are the things that are easily forgotten in our hustle-and-bustle, materialistic world of today. I hope everyone can take time today (and everyday) to be thankful for all the joys in their lives. Wishing everyone a safe and happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Her Newest Obsession

So, Darling Daughter has now discovered what every tween girl discovers at some point.....talking on the phone. When I say she has discovered talking on the phone, I mean she has become completely OBSESSED with it! We're talking full force, all out, hours upon hours, little girl gossip sessions. Seriously, she goes straight to the phone when she gets home, well she attempts to do so phone until homework is finished. With that being said, she runs (literally) in the door, finishes homework with lightening speed, and starts speed dialing. Then comes guessed it! She chokes down her dinner, rushes through a shower, then back to the phone. My 8 year old has suddenly turned into a 13 year old girl right before my eyes! I know she's got to grow up some time, but does she have to do it so fast???

Oh! I almost forgot to add her Christmas request to this post.....a CELL PHONE! I hate to break it to her, but there is NO WAY she's getting a cell phone for Christmas! I told her Santa had a minimum age limit on those!

Monday, November 2, 2009

A New Look

Halloween has come and gone, so that means it's time to change the look of the blog. Enjoy the Thanksgiving theme while it lasts, it will soon be time for Christmas!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween!

I hope everyone had a safe and happy Halloween last night. We did our usually trick-or-treating routine. The kids had a great time and we now have enough candy to last us well into the next century! Here are a few pics from our trick-or-treating adventures....
Check out these two.....If you're not scared, you should be!
What a crew....Cowboy, Witch, and pumpkin.....

Our pumpkin wasn't too into the picture-taking last night

Look out Wyatt Earp!
Oooo-Ooooo Witchy Woman.....
Yes these are spider-web, glitter, fake-eyelashes. My little darling daughter thought she needed these to complete her costume. Yeah....those lasted about 10 minutes before she had enough and ripped them off, and to the garbage they went.....Lesson learned....

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Kindergarten Class Field Trip

Last week Luke's class went to the zoo for their class field trip. All the kids had a great time and the weather was perfect (Yay NO RAIN!) We were just about the only people at the zoo that day, which was great. Imagine taking 60-70 five year olds some place. It would have been horrible if the place had been packed! We might have had to leave the kids in the cages with the monkeys! Candace and Chloe got to go with us and Chloe loved looking at all the animals. She kept pointing and saying "Loooook!"

The Lorikeets are always a fav. We were the first to feed them and they were HUNGRY! As soon as we walked into the cage they attacked! We had them on our heads, our arms, and our backs. I've never seen them so aggressive! So much fun!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

3rd Grade Field Trip

Last week Kaylyn had her class field trip to The Alabama Theater and to The McWane Center. At the Alabama Theater we saw The Alabama Symphony Orchestra perform "Symphony in Spaaaaaccccceeee" which started out pretty good, but got to be long and boring. (Really, how interesting can the orchestra be??) Anyway, the kids got exposed to some culture, but were glad when it was over and they got to go next door to The McWane Center. The symphony and the McWane center were a package deal and the place was PACKED with kids. Seriously, they were running EVERYWHERE! They had a good time and got to see lots of cool hands-on things at the museum.Waiting for the symphony
The McWane Center

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Riding on Two Wheels

Last weekend Luke decided it was time to lose the training wheels. Chris took off his training wheels, put him on the bike, and held the back of his seat for, literally, only about 30 seconds and Luke took off riding. He is now riding everywhere with his newfound freedom of two wheels. He also learned he can go much faster on two wheels and he's a little dare devil! Now he just needs to learn to use the brakes!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Good Job Kids!

Wow! It's been a LONG time since I've updated! I have no excuses.....

Anyway, on to the point of this post....

Both kids got their first report cards for the year last week. Kaylyn made straight A's and Luke had mostly S's (satisfactory), with a few P's (progressing), and one N (needs improvement). Kaylyn is so proud of herself. She works hard in school and we usually have no problem getting homework done in the evenings. Luke's areas which are progressing were: talking, paying attention, staying in his seat, and following directions. The one N he received was number recognition. These are all areas I knew he would have some trouble with. He's still getting into some trouble in school for not wanting to do his work in class, but he hasn't pinched anyone lately or stolen any fruit roll-ups! One thing has become more evident to me since school started...Luke will most likely go to Kindergarten again next year. It's a maturity thing. Luke can learn what he needs to know to go to first grade but he is a "young" Kindergartner since his birthday is the week before school starts and he's barely 5 years old. There are several kids in his class who have already turned 6 and this makes a big difference in elementary school. I think he would struggle through school in every grade if we don't let him repeat Kindergarten.

Kaylyn is loving her dance classes this year, even though the competition teams have stepped it up a notch! This year she has 3 hour classes instead of2 hours and there will be 3-4 competitions. During competition season she will have 2 3 hours classes per week. She wants to do a solo this year at the recital....we'll see....

Chloe is still progressing more and more everyday. She's learning new words and her babbling is mixed with words. She understands just about everything that is said to her and is following directions. She has also developed some major 2 year old attitude! Everything has to be done HER way! The wrath of her 2 year old temper will befall anyone who thinks differently!

I am trudging through my LAST semester and have a major case of "senioritis." I never thought I would have senioritis at the age of 31 years old, but I do! I'm just ready for December 10th to hurry up and get here so all of this will be OVER!

Chris is still in and out of Mobile. The job there is supposed to be finished by the end of November. Hopefully that will happen, but there will be other traveling jobs to come. Who knows where...Oh well, he has a job and we are thankful!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

ER Beach Trip 2009

This past weekend we had our annual ER beach trip. SO much fun! This year there were only 5 of us......Miranda was working, Michelle had a wedding party, Staci was busy delivering a baby (Congrats Joe, Staci, and big brother Trevor!). Anyway, you get the picture. Even though we had a small group, I think this year was the BEST year ever! We left the hospital early Friday morning and, even though we stopped 5 times on the way (don't ask), we were on the beach by 2:00 and stayed there til dark.

After beach time, we went to eat dinner at Hammerhead Fred's. LOVE that place!

After dinner, we headed over to Pier Park were we spent the rest of the night at Tootsie's. We had the BEST time! The band was great and we just hung out and had a good 'ol time.

Hanging out at Tootsie's Saturday it pretty much rained ALL. DAY. LONG. We made it to the beach for a little while, then it started raining, so we went to the hot tub for a while. We finally gave it up and went back to the condo. We left our chairs on the beach because we planned to go back to the beach. While we were in the condo our chairs were stolen....all 5 of them, in broad daylight, IN. THE. RAIN! Oh well, it's the risk you take when you decide to be lazy and not drag them around!
Saturday night we went to eat at Margaritaville. Had some good food, listened to some good music, and were entertained by some pirates on stilts. After dinner we went back to Tootsie's and hung out for the rest of the night.