Every good and perfect gift is from above...James 1:17

Sunday, August 27, 2017


We celebrated Independence Day our favorite way--we went to the Randolph Celebration with the fam. 
Evening walks are appreciated by everyone, but probably Frito Pie loves it the most.
The cows cut our walk short.
A bouquet of wildflowers picked by my Daisy.
This year there was laser tag at the Randolph Celebration. DanFam5 had fun with that all day long.
Daisy won the award for sharp shooter for the day. She won several of the rounds.
I must have been looking official. That, or maybe judgmental. I was asked to judge the parade as well as the Steve Hoard Memorial Award for the car show. Talk about pressure!
Steve used to make the awards for the car show with his metal art. They now have a Steve Hoard Memorial Award. We picked a hot rod-type car that we think Steve would have approved of.
This old fire truck was not the car we picked, but it was fun to climb on and drive.
 For the parade we made a rubric: decorations, friendliness, and treats thrown. If the kids liked the free parade swag, they voted higher on the other two categories, as well. #Priorities.
The best part of the celebration was spending the day with friends and family.
Trouble with a capital T-- Callie (Reika's friend), Reika, Autumn (sister's niece), Daisy, and Brandy.
Stevie was too little to tag along with the big girls this year.
Playing with fireworks!
April had a great idea. She brought a lantern in memory of her Dad. We all signed it. This one brings tears to my eyes on more than one level.
Steve let me know he was with us. Sure do miss him.
A great weekend celebrating America and my family!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Middle School: A Scary Experience

The middle school years are kind of a scary experience for everyone involved. To keep with that theme, we got Zekers a ghost tour of the Stockyards for his 5th grade graduation gift.
We started with dinner in the Stockyards.
 You can barely see Zeke's little head poking out up there on the balcony.
 I told him to look scared. I think he must have misunderstood and thought I said look really sad.
Nailed it.
 We each got a complimentary drink with our tour. Anytime they get to drink soda that's a win for them. Peach Bellini for me is a win, too!
 We just walked around the Stockyards, stopping at a few spots and listening to stories of people getting murdered/dying years ago and now employees getting creeped out after-hours or feeling like they were touched or things mysteriously getting moved.
 He's not so impressed with his momma's 'scared straight' selfie.
 Although it was evening, it was July in Texas. Lemme put that in layman's terms: it was hot. Sweaty hot.
Not too hot for Daisy to strike a pose, though.
 Here is DanFam5, looking freaked out.
No better way to top off the celebration than with a little ice cream. 
The tour wasn't exactly what we were expecting. Not really scary at all. But now we can say we have done it. Hopefully, in three years, Zeke can say the same about middle school. 

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Zekers Finishes One Chapter and Starts The Next

My first born is growing up and he's making us to proud!
My boy who cannot read enough finished his second chapter of life. Elementary school is now behind him and he's ready to start his  next chapter: middle school. He has had a wonderful experience in elementary. He has been a great student...not one trip to the principal's office for bad behavior, high grades, good friends, successful in academic events as well as the fine arts, Ann Brannon award recipient, and high honors on his STAAR tests (a perfect reading score at that). I couldn't have asked for more.

Well, I can ask for more. I hope he still remembers his love for his momma, even when he's embarrassed by me. I hope he remembers how much I love him, even when it's tough love. I hope he always tries his best in life and can be proud of his effort. I hope he always chooses to be kind, even when others are not. I hope he always loves Jesus and shines His light for others around him.
The Carlson promotion ceremonies were short and sweet.
Zeke was on his elimination diet; he was a trooper and ate his gluten-free cupcakes instead of the gluten-full ones.
Isaac, Darius, Ethan, Grant, Grant, Jonah and Zeke
Zeke, Darius, Wyn, Grant 
Best Buds
We celebrated at lunch with these boys' small group leader, Will.
 Here's to finishing this chapter and starting a great middle school experience!