Charlie, Evie and Ford

Charlie, Evie and Ford

Friday, July 26, 2013

Future Tennis Star?

His daddy hopes so!  Although Prince Snarles (see below) enjoyed his first tennis outing, he was a little put off by: (1) the heat, and (2) the fact that he "couldn't hit the ball over the fence like Daddy."  (Umm, Daddy, why are we hitting balls over the fence?)
Despite the grumpy face here, Charlie recovered quickly and had grand memories of his first tennis experience.  Apparently their second time out lasted a bit longer. :)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Better Than An Amusement Park

Charlie has had a lifelong dream of changing a flat tire (really).  I have had to describe, in excruciating detail, the process of changing a tire to him countless times (and undoubtedly got several details wrong, since I've never actually changed a tire on my own...don't tell Charlie :).  Charlie is forever on the lookout for flat tires, and is always quick to alert people when their tires are a bit low on air.  So when Clint's rental car got a flat tire, one member of our household was absolutely thrilled.  We had to run out and look at it several times, and when Papa and Ahh showed up for the weekend, we just couldn't wait for Daddy to get home from work--we had to change it!  You would have thought we told Charlie we were headed to Disney World from all the happy shrieking. :)

Here he is watching very carefully.  Charlie has a very long attention span for things that fascinate him, and he was completely entranced during this entire experience.  He especially liked that Papa explained everything he was doing and entrusted Charlie with the oh-so-important lug nuts.
 C, demonstrating his laser-like focus.
 The jack was another source of great fascination.
 Sooooo happy!
 The other tiny member of our family was not so interested in the whole tire-changing experience.  She knew something fabulous was going on, just couldn't figure out why everyone was so focused on an old tire!
 Is Charlie ready to play yet?
 First successful tire change complete!  These two boys were soooo proud.  Evie's not quite sure what the purpose of this photo is, but she was determined to be in it. :)
 On that same weekend, Evie became obsessed with wearing hats, and now is insisting to wear her Iowa State hat (thank you Papa!) every time we leave the house.  She also loves a "pony" and a "bow," so it's getting a bit crowded under the hat. :)  Evie loves to pick her own outfits and both kids really like to pick their own shoes.  A sample of their self-selected outfits below:
 C'mon, Mom!  We're all ready to go!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Let's Pray We've Had All Three!

You know how they say bad things happen in threes?  I am such a believer, especially after our past month.  First, Clint was in the OR one day and during a sweep of the on-call room, the janitors threw away his wallet, credit cards, license, etc.  After helping out with getting his stuff replaced, I thought we were just so unlucky.  Apparently things have been just too good lately, because we were not done.  

A few days later, I was woken up at 4:30 in the morning by a very agitated Clint.  I was still groggy and completely confused when he told me his car was underwater, his phone got lost in the water, and he had to run back home.  What??  After I woke up, the story was still fairly unbelievable.  Clint was driving to work at 4:30 in the morning on a very dark road a few blocks from our house.  The road was empty and unbeknownst to Clint, a large water main had just exploded nearby.  The water rushed down a hill and completely flooded the street (and some nearby garages).  Clint couldn't see any water in the dark, and as he was driving, nothing seemed out of the ordinary until all of a sudden, his car was underwater!  He got out with most of his important stuff, but his phone got lost in the water.  As we were getting things worked out with insurance and the Dallas police, we turned on the TV and realized that Clint's car was quickly becoming famous--we saw it featured on three different channels!

Poor little Honda. :)
 A jeep joins the party...
 The accident was almost worth it, because you've never seen anyone so excited and stirred up as Charlie, after he woke up and got the full story.  He could not bear to eat breakfast; he was just dying to get out to see the car in the water.  It was all he could talk about, and we must have watched the NBC clip of the water and the car about 50 times.  Charlie had us repeat the story over and over and at one point, when he apparently hadn't heard it enough, he got exasperated with me and Clint for being too distracted and yelled, "can someone please tell me what happened to Dada's car???"  As soon as Evie got some breakfast in her belly, we headed down to check out the car.  The water had already receded, but luckily we got there just in time to see the tow truck take the car away.  This was quite thrilling for Charlie.  We also got into a conversation with the NBC reporter at the scene, during which Clint politely declined an interview, especially after she asked him incredulously, "so you just DROVE into the water?"  :)
 After learning that the car had been totaled, our next task was to find a new (used) car before our rental car term ran out (especially after the rental car developed a flat tire within one day of having it--ugh!).  Finding a car for our insurance proceeds was not easy, but we prevailed, and ended up with a nice little used car for Clint.  Unfortunately, due to Clint's crazy schedule, we had to fit car-buying in between events on July 4, which made the day a little more exhausting than it otherwise would have been (I forgot how much I hate buying a car!).  Car buying is even less fun with two little hooligans running around, although they did give us something to laugh about.

Here is poor Clint negotiating with two crazies on his lap.
 After an hour or two at the dealership, Charlie and Evie became CRAZY.  Some of their many antics involved Charlie carrying Evie around (below), walking from cubicle to cubicle saying "hook 'em!" and flashing the longhorn hand signal at everyone over and over until they said "hook 'em" back, climbing all over the sofas and desks, throwing business cards all over the floor, eating and scribbling with pens, running away, etc.  Fun, fun.
Once we finally had that worked out, I thought things were starting to look up.  We were getting ready to meet the Hendersons for a swim a few days later, and Evie and I went out to the garage to get a few of our swim things out of the car.  I opened the garage, knowing we'd be heading out in a few minutes.  We then went back in the house to put on sunscreen and heard a loud banging in the garage.  The kids and I were a bit startled, but I figured something just fell down.  Apparently not, because a few minutes later, a jogger started knocking frantically on our front window.  I ran outside and he reported that a "big man with a lot of tattoos" had just parked at the end of the street, run back to our garage, grabbed Clint's bike, and then ran off again.  We were so sad, and immediately called the police, but they (of course) haven't had any luck finding the guy or the bike.  Charlie was very disturbed by this story and asked me why the guy stole the bike.  I launched into an educational discussion of working hard, saving your money and buying things versus just stealing things and making people sad.  After thinking about it for a minute, Charlie decided that when he grows up, he is going to "get a lot of tattoos, be a bad man, and steal things!"  Poor guy got a LONG talking-to after that, and he has since reconsidered. :)  I do love hearing him re-tell this story, though--he does it very dramatically and never misses a detail--especially the part about "a LOT of tattoos." :)

Although we were so sad to lose our bike, I was just so glad that the guy didn't come into the house.  I felt like we had a little guardian angel with us that day.  So no, we didn't miss our swim.  We weren't about to let that guy ruin our day! :)

Charlie and Charis relaxing in the pool...we recover quickly. :)
 Sweet friends.
 Best buddies. :)
Please tell me this is all 3--we are exhausted!  (And out of money--apparently cars and bikes are expensive!  iPhones are too, but my hooligans and I managed to talk the Apple store into a new phone. :)

Monday, July 22, 2013


I love that Evie will now smile on command.  Here she is showing off her "happy face."  This is usually accompanied by an enthusiastic "happy, happy, happy!"

 Note: all of her happy faces are not as cute as the above two.  Most look a tad bit more forced (see below :).

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Fourth of July!

What a fun, crazy, wild fourth of July we had this year!  Clint was off, which made it oh-so-much-more-fun than it otherwise would have been. :)  Due to some car troubles earlier in the week (more on that to follow), we had to fit in buying a new car (!!) between the parade, brunch & bounce house party, and an evening BBQ/fireworks-watching party.  Luckily, the kids did great--both stayed up until 10:30 that night and were so much fun all day.  We were exhausted, but it was an awesome day.

We started off the day right: putting on our red, white, and blue before heading to the parade.

Charlie is obsessed with the song, Grand Old Flag (thank you Papa), and Grand Old Flags themselves (all American flags are "Grand Old Flags," not just "flags").  He marched around singing allllll morning. :)
Daddy and Evie getting ready for the parade...
Our patriotic kids were ready to finish pictures and get down to the parade!
We met up with the Jordans, Stoltzes, and a few other couples at our best, shady, parade-watching spot.

Guess who was super excited to learn that there were RANGERS in the parade? 

Miss E was thrilled when she figured out they were throwing candy at her.
This duck made quite the impression on the kids--it veered all over the road and they were appropriately terrified. :)
The old-timey fire engine looked cool...until it blasted its super-loud siren...
...then Evie decided she was "all done!"

Notice poor Evie still hanging back.  She ran away when the fire engine blasted its horn and it took quite a while to coax her back.
Still unsure (but holding tight to her sucker in case things improve).

Another Ranger!  What luck!

Our family. :)
We moved from there to a parade-watching/bounce house/water slide/brunch down the street.  Charlie was sooo excited when he saw this thing set up.  He could not get into his swim suit fast enough.
Evie jumping...cautiously. :)
Charlie racing up to the slide...not cautiously. :)

After naps and several hours of car shopping/buying, we headed out to the DAC with the Jordans for an awesome BBQ dinner and fireworks-watching party.  This was the highlight of the day (and for Charlie, maybe the year).  There was this awesome bounce house obstacle course...
...and the well as lots of food, glow necklaces and sticks (thank you Bethany!), tons of kids to play with, and fireworks.
Charlie got a little nuts in the bounce house.  I heard a little girl run out, saying "it's getting crazy in there!"
Evie, Palmer, and Charlie, getting ready for fireworks...these glow necklaces were quite the hit (and extremely useful--I think we would have lost Charlie several more times than we did without them :).

It was our first time to stay up for fireworks, and I was so glad we did.  Both kids loved them.  Evie cried for a few seconds when they first started, but once she realized they weren't so scary, she settled in and loved them.  She was in a trance the entire show.  Charlie loved them too, but was equally interested in watching fireworks/running around with big boys playing nearby.  
Happy Fourth of July (a bit late) to all of you!