Monday, November 30, 2015

Thanksgiving Break 2015

It has been so nice to have the kids out of school. We still have several days left of break I just wanted to stop and record what all we have done! 
Friday- Colby had Grandparents Day and Lindsay had her Thanksgiving Feast. Both had a half day! Colby spent the afternoon with my parents and I enjoyed some quiet time with Lindsay. That evening we had a realtor come by. Yes we are thinking about buying a new house and selling this one! We had dinner and took a walk then had our usual movie night. This week we watched Inside Out. 
Saturday- Austin was off but was going out of town for the USM football game. My parents were also going. I decided to make a trip to Lakeside with the kids. Our friends Ashleigh, Makyrin, and Makylee met us. It was a madhouse! It was the day the train opened and Santa arrived. We were able to do a little shopping and looking around though. The kids got some Christmas ideas. We ended the trip with lunch at the Food Court. It was fun just having that time with friends. The kids loved it! That afternoon we relaxed and watched football. I love our low key afternoons. It rained the rest of the day so we were inside but the kids did a great job keeping themselves busy. 
Sunday- Austin was off and we all went to church. He helped me teach first service. We had about 8-9 kids. I had a few helpers too so it was a pretty good Sunday! We also loved the beautiful cool weather! We even got to enjoy being outside for a bit during class. We stayed for 2nd service as well so we could go to church as a family. This fall I haven't been to church since well like August. With football games and trips its just been so busy! So I was ready to be back in service and its always sweet to worship with the kids. They both did really well too! I am glad they get to sometimes experience big church. I love that our church does church on their level but I also think its important for them to sometimes be in church with us as well. That afternoon we hung out around the house. 
Monday- Austin was back to work. I had to grocery shop. I always hate grocery shopping when the kids are off school. Not b/c I don't like taking them or that they are bad its just I hate to waste a day off with that. They were very well behaved and we had a planned a Thanksgiving playdate with their friend Ella. So after our shopping we went and picked her up then came home so I could put everything away and could cook. My mom also came over to help us. It was a sweet time. I picked up a rotisserie chicken, we had mac n cheese (their fav), green, beans, rolls, and cranberry sauce. We had a fun time and I think it made the kids feel special. I know most Thanksgivings are often more adult centered so I thought it was fun to have a kid centered day and lunch. We ate and talked about what we were thankful for and we sang a few songs. They didn't get much time to play b/c her mom had pick her up b/c her brother Eli had an appt. That afternoon the kids and I just rested and hung out. 
Tuesday- I wanted to do something special with the kids. We decided to go to the Zoo. I had been since like July since we had been. We invited a few friends but no one could come. Honestly I kinda enjoyed just having the kids to myself. We had no agenda I just went where they led. They really enjoyed the animals and it was a beautiful day. We spent a lot of time in the new Frog area and the new orangutan and elephant exhibit. Colby really wanted to see the Jaguars. We went at a nice pace and again I just followed their lead. They were both so sweet! We packed our lunch and had a little picnic in the swamp area. I loved that time with them. I really feel like we are in a sweet spot of parenting. Having a 3 1/2 and 7 year old is pretty amazing! I've really loved having them home. We ate lunch and saw a few more areas before heading home. We relaxed that afternoon and just enjoyed the time together.
Wednesday- We had made plans with my parents. We went to first order Lindsay's cake as per tradition. We then went to Hobby Lobby. We went there a month ago and the kids had a fit so my mom wanted to bring them back at Christmas time! They had the best time. I think Colby and my mom could have bought the place out! Afterwards we ate Mexican with them. Again another holiday tradition. It was nice to enjoy this day before the holiday crazy really sets in. The kids and I made one last stop at Petsmart before coming home. As usual that afternoon we relaxed and hung out. We took a nice walk that evening. 
Thursday was Thanksgiving! 
Friday- We had an appointment for Oliver. I thought this would be easy peasy but the 10:00 appt took 2 hours. It was crazy. The kids were super well behaved though and we made the best of it. We dropped the cat off then met Austin for lunch at Jimmy John's. Another tradition! Its fun taking them downtown like that to see daddy in the middle of the week! We took it easy that afternoon after a busy morning! 
Saturday- We had pictures scheduled at 8:30 so we had to wake up and hustle. They were out at Laffrinere park. The kids were well behaved and cooperative so it went really quick. Its amazing the difference a year makes! We came home for a potty stop then went to the movies. We met Ashleigh, Makyrin, and Makylee there. We saw the movie The Good Dinosaur. It was really cute! The kids loved it and loved being with their friends. We came home after to watch football and rest. 
Sunday- A busy day! We had church..I taught in the early service and we left after that. Our little class had 11 this week so it was quite busy. Luckily I had enough help though so I didn't feel stressed or crazy after ;) We left church and went out to eat. Now that the kids are getting older its a little bit more of a pleasant experience. For awhile we just picked up food b/c trying to wrangle 2 young kids in a restaurant just wasn't worth it. After that we got our tree. It was in the upper 70s and we were all in short sleeves! AGH NOLA Christmas! We got it though. It was a busy afternoon of trying to clean up the house and drag out Christmas stuff. The kids loved each moment of it though and loved helping out! 
This Thanksgiving break was so much fun! We were all well and I was thankful for that and the kids are just at such perfect ages we can do so much! I love that the holidays are so magical and exciting for them! I tried my best to make this a fun and exciting break! I think we succeeded. They got to do something fun every single day! i will miss them greatly while they are at school but it will be a little nice to get life back to normal and be able to have a few hours alone. Also knowing we only have 3 weeks until Christmas break also makes that easier to bear =)

Monday, November 23, 2015

Grandparents Day & Thanksgiving Feast

So another year of having 2 kids at 2 different schools means a busy mama. I am so thankful though for in town grandparents. We dropped Colby off at carpool and my parents planned to spend the day with him for Grandparents Day. I have never been able to see what all they do at Grandparents Day b/c I have always been with Lindsay at her school. I spent the morning helping set up for the Thanksgiving Feast. I did this last year and enjoyed it plus since I stay home I figure its a good party day for me to contribute since more work is involved. 
I always have fun hanging out around there too b/c i just love all the teachers. We got everything organized and set up and I was able to visit with the teachers and other moms. The kids mostly just played outside that morning. I love her sweet little preschool and that they are allowing the children to actually be kids. 
The actual Feast started at 11. The kids came in and did their little singing time. it was SO cute! This year Lindsay actually sang! She didn't get into it quite like some of the others but atleast she was participating! They were adorable! I am going to miss this school so much. Afterwards they sit down and eat together. Again so cute! During the week they help make the food which I think is so neat too! Lindsay actually ate more of the food then I thought she would. She pretty much tried it all except the green beans. After they ate the kids just enjoyed running around like crazy people! I let her do that for awhile while I visited with some other parents. Then it was finally time to head home. We came home and had lunch and rested. Colby had a great time at Grandparent's Day from what I hear too. We are all excited now about a week off of school and family time together! 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Cleaning and Teaching

So our weekend was very low key. I love low key weekends if you haven't figured that out by now. I love just hanging out with the kids and letting them play. Saturday morning we had to get going though b/c we were going up to the church for the Thankful to Serve Day. I think its important not only for myself to serve and give back to our church and school but also for our children to grow up doing that. Colby got to be in on a lot of my mom and me cleaning and doing stuff at Metairie when we were over the nursery. Last year they were able to help out at the same event. The kids did really great! There were 5 total so I was glad they had some friends. We put them in charge of wiping down toys. Lindsay had a great time with Ebbie and Makylee. Colby and Makyrin also had a blast. Different parents took turns bringing them outside so they could get a fresh air break as well. 
We worked until about 11:30. We then came home and had lunch and just relaxed and watched football. We were all thankful for a quiet afternoon. 
Sunday Austin was working so the kids and I just went to 1st service. I taught and it was a nice Sunday. I had 7 or 8 kids. I was by myself though so I was thankful they were all well behaved. I love my little class though and getting to work with them. I also love that Lindsay has so many little friends. Again that afternoon we rested. I was thankful for a weekend with a lot of downtime. This season of fall is so busy so we try to enjoy the time we have at home. 

Monday, November 16, 2015


The first blessing this week came in an interesting way. So Wednesday was like any other day...I had spent the morning at home while the kids were at school. I was on my way to get Lindsay when I got a phone call from Colby's school. I always cringe at those phonecalls b/c I never know what the news will be. Needless to say it was the dreaded...your child puked at school call! 
I rushed and scooped up Lindsay from recess and high tailed it to Calvary. Visions of a week of puke filled my head! I got there and he was pale but other then that he seemed fine. The secretary explained that she felt he got nauseous when his friend Makyrin lost a tooth and a lot of blood came out. We got home and I fixed lunch and I could tell he was completely fine and I was so THANKFUL! We cancelled our plans for church and honestly I was relieved for a free afternoon at home with my littles. We relaxed and they played outside. It was wonderful! We even got to take a walk that night. We did a little math review as well. Its days like that I long to homeschool atleast part time. Although extended breaks make me question that too. I really wish he had 1 half day a week even! That would be great! I just enjoyed that time of having no where to be and them just getting to play and relax. I think we all needed the break that night. i think sometimes God just allows these circumstances to make us rest. I think he was already getting tired from the trip and the time change so he might not have made it through the week if not. 
Friday was another sweet day. I try to keep Lindsay home one day a week and usually it happens to fall on Thursday or Friday. This week it was Friday. We haven't been able to have a playdate in awhile though b/c life has just been busy! So finally we had a free day and I was keeping her home! We met a friend and her son at the park. It was fun just to visit with my friend and let her play. I know these days are short b/c she will be in full time prek next year. I want to soak it up! 
The weekend was slow for the most part and that was also nice. We spent a lot of time relaxing and watching football and playing outside. The perfect weekend in my opinion. I used to feel guilty about not going anywhere fabulous or taking it easy but I think God intended for us to just rest sometimes. We feel refreshed and ready to take on the week! This is the final week before Thanksgiving break and we are all excited! 

Friday, November 13, 2015

Barton Family Reunion

This weekend we were able to go to our 4th Barton Family Reunion. As you recall the first one was in Austin, TX. We attended that one with Colby when he was 15 months old. The next was in Pensacola, Florida and he was 3 years old and I was pregnant with Lindsay. The last one was held here at my parent's house and we had Colby who was 5 and Lindsay was 1 1/2. 
This one was in Mississippi at Lake Tiak 'O Kata. 
We planned to check Colby out at lunch and we kept Lindsay home from preschool. We spent the morning loading the van up and getting things ready. We picked Colby up at 11:30. We decided to drive to Slidell before stopping for lunch. We stopped at a Panera Bread. I think the kids were happy to stop there and we all enjoyed our lunch. Lindsay slept from NOLA to Slidell. I was glad she got a nap but had wished it would have been AFTER lunch not before. 
We got back on the road and drove straight on to the cabin. We arrived around 4:30. We unpacked and checked out our cabin for a bit. The kids were in overdrive and super excited about their room and the cabin. We soon went to check out my parent's cabin. We visited with them and Randall and Lizzie for a bit before heading to the Reunion Cabin. Once we arrived there people were slowly getting there also. We all sat around and visited for quite sometime. They were late serving dinner and the kids were getting quite restless and hungry. Lindsay behaved the worst. She refused to eat the food but wanted dessert. We finally told everyone good night and went back to our cabin. We all slept good which was wonderful! 
Saturday the kids were up bright and early. Around 6:30 I think...we woke up to rain. We had a little bit of relaxing time around the cabin before starting to stir and get ready for the day. It was a lovely view to wake up to and nice to just sit back and appreciate the moment and nature. We got dressed and headed to my parents cabin around 9. We visited for a bit there with them before once again heading to the Reunion Cabin. They were having a brunch around 10:30. Once again the kids were restless and hungry and not totally crazy about the food. That's the hard part at these mostly adult gatherings. They were going stir crazy by 1 so we decided it was best for everyone's sanity to get them out for awhile. They really did behave well but since it RAINED the entire day it was hard for them to burn their energy. We went back to our cabin and freshened up then took a drive. We ended up driving into Starkville. We figured we could see some sights and Lindsay could get a much needed nap...which she did ;). We drove around the campus of MS State for awhile before stopping for coffee and a snack at Chickfila. We figured this way the kids wouldn't be STARVING at dinner that night. Plus they enjoyed running around and playing with other kids for awhile. We headed back and rested for a bit at our cabin. That evening we had a BBQ dinner in the big cabin. It was fun to visit with everyone. That night though Colby got really tired and grumpy. I think he was also hungry. It had been such a busy week and he just fell apart. I felt bad for him but luckily after a little pouting he got happy again. We watched the first half of the LSU/Alabama game then we went back to get the kids to bed after a long day. Once again we all slept great. 
We were up bright and early again on Sunday. We got ready and told everyone goodbye then headed home. We didn't stay for breakfast b/c it didn't really look like anything the kids would eat plus we were anxious to get on the road. We stopped for gas and they had a little donut shop attached so we just let the kids pick one thing from there. We knew we would be stopping for a big lunch. The timing ended up to where we would stop for lunch in Hattiesburg so we met Austin's parents there. It was a good ending for the trip. It was good to catch up with them and the kids were excited to see them as well! 
We had a great weekend! I am so thankful we have been able to make all these reunions even with little kids. I think its important for them to know where they came from. We are now all ready to face another week! 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Oliver Luke

So we just added another member to our family!! A KITTEN! So I have been talking about it for the last 2 months that maybe we should get the kids a kitten for Christmas. They have been asking for a new cat since Bailey died. Austin wasn't quite ready though. Last Friday at Farm day they were giving away kittens and they were oh so cute! I texted Austin with a picture and told him we should get one! I knew it wouldn't work though b/c I wasn't going straight home plus I just didn't feel like it was the "right" cat. Well anyway I guess it got Austin thinking so he decided to google Maine Coon cats in NOLA and came up with this little kitten that looks just like Bailey. It was in Metairie and he said we could go check it out on Sunday. 
We went over after church on Sunday. We all immediately fell in love. He was only 8 weeks old but the lady said we could take him if we wanted. We brought him home and our other animals are slowly adjusting to him. 
He's so sweet and cuddly. Right now we are keeping him mostly in a kennel until he gets bigger. Right now I am nervous about him getting loose in the house and us not being able to find him. We let him out and put him mostly on the couch b/c the house is just too overwhelming for him. He's slowly exploring but mostly staying close. He fits in great and its so fun having a little kitten in the house even though he is a bit of work. He's very well behaved and loves his kennel. 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Halloween 2015

Halloween 2015 has come and gone. We had a great and busy weekend filled with many fun activities! On Friday Lindsay had her Halloween Party. She brought cookies to share with her friends. I didn't sign up for her party so I wasn't obligated to be there for that one. Which was good b/c I was helping Colby's school at FARM Day. Luckily her little best friend's mom took lots of pictures for me. She got a lot of treats and from the looks of the pictures she had a great time. 
I stayed at Colby's school from 9:15-11:30 for his Farm Day. I had signed up to just help with the class since I knew I would be arriving late and leaving early. I enjoyed visiting with his teacher and getting to hang out with him. When I got there they were out on the playground. I missed their pumpkin patch time and at that point they were just playing. I was glad they had some free time to begin the morning. Next they had games. Again the kids mostly had the choice of doing what game they wanted. I mostly just followed Colby around and assisted with whatever game he was playing at the time. Their next event was Trunk or Treat. I was truly impressed with the amount of cars they had this year. It was nice to not only see school families and staff but to also have church members involved as well. The kids got a lot of great stuff and I enjoyed seeing everyone! The next activity was chapel. I love that they incorporate this into a fun day! This year Mr. Ryan is the one who did it. It was a lot like last year but its just so special that even on Farm day the Gospel can be shared. The last rotation was the Barn. The kids were SO excited about this! I was honestly glad they saved the best until last. Colby and I fell in love with the kittens. I was so ready to take one home...more on that later. Colby loved on the kittens, puppies, and chicks. He had a blast! I also got to visit with some of the moms during this part so that was cool too. Around 11:30 the kids were finishing up and heading off to lunch. It was also the time I had to leave to get Lindsay. Colby was going home with Makyrin from school so it was helpful that I didn't have to drag him with me. 
I picked up lunch for Lindsay and I and headed to her school. I arrived while they were still on the playground so I got to see her and her friends for a short while. We gathered up her stuff then headed to the pumpkin patch. I had signed up for that day to run the pumpkin patch. I was kind of dreading it but ended up really enjoying it and Lindsay was really good. She got antsy at times but for the most part was great considering the long day. We had to be there until 2. We visited with the other ladies and just had a good time. We sold a decent amount of pumpkins as well. When we finished our shift we had to go pick Colby up. We didn't stay and visit really I just scooped him up and headed out. 
We came home to relax and unwind for a bit before I had to straighten up my house and get ready for last minute Trick or Treating. The weather was forecasted to be rainy and bad on Halloween (saturday). The city of New Orleans ended up recommending that people go Friday instead.  
My parents and Randall and Elizabeth wanted to come over and see the kids Trick or Treat. I had to gt the house semi ready for company. they got here around 5 and we ate pizza then headed out. The kids had a blast trick or treating. This was the first time its just been them though...usually we have a friend. Its so funny b/c I think Lindsay gets WAY more into it then Colby. She has a blast and loves collecting all the candy. We went to as many houses as normal I feel like. We got home around 7:30. The kids were pretty tired after such a busy day. We luckily had them in bed around 8. 
Saturday was really Halloween. The kids and I were excited to have a Saturday with no real plans or places to rush off too! We had a laid back morning around the house and hte kids watched a movie. We made a quick run to the grocery but otherwise stayed home. I really think they liked the down time and time to relax and play with their toys. That afternoon Austin got home early and we got the house ready for more company. We had decided to keep our Halloween party scheduled. We got a last minute text saying Colby's friend Makyrin couldn't make it but my parents and Nijel, Mia, and Melody all came. It was nice to have some time with friends and family. The kids all get along great! Two 7 year olds and a 4 and 3 year old make for a wild night. They had fun though and that's all that matters!