Sunday, November 30, 2008

A Rustic Thanksgiving

The carver must have sharp instruments...

Our silly turkey fryers...Happy (left) and Pop (right)

The fam at the table...

And Travis playing us a soulful ditty on his harmonica after we said grace...

Hunting Party

A few camoflauged favorites from the nearly five full days of hunting during the Thanksgiving break...

Thursday, November 27, 2008

The Double Eight Cabin

We spend a lot of time at my parents' hill country ranch--the Double Eight. It's 88 acres (thus the name) and my Dad designed and built the cabin that's pictured below so that we'd all have a comfortable place to stay while the guys deer hunt. Photos don't really do it justice, but I thought I'd try and capture a little bit of the atmosphere so you might have an idea of why we like to spend so much time there.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Travis' Thanksgiving Feast

Today we joined Travis for his school's Thanksgiving Feast. It was outside under the oak trees on the campus and it was such a gorgeous day! The Kindergardeners wore Indian costumes and the First Graders wore Pilgrim costumes. Both classes performed some songs before the meal. I wasn't at a great vantage point for pictures of the performance, but here are some pictures from the feast...

The Indians and Pilgrims dining together.

And Cole, who was so good throughout the whole event.

Same face...different hat!

At last year's Kindergarten Thanksgiving Feast, this was Travis' reaction to his plate of yummy food...

And this year...

All that changed was the costume!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Christmas Card Hilarity

We had our annual "do-it-yourself" Christmas card photo shoot tonight. The boys were pretty cooperative for the most part. I only had to take 26 shots to get one worthy of gracing our the past that number has been as high as 60. Here are two hilarious shots that will not be on the front of our card. But they are too cute not to share. So enjoy the sneak peek and look for the real thing in your mailbox soon...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Deck the Halls

We spent all day (and I do mean ALL day) on Saturday decorating the house for Christmas. It's always so nice to come home from Thanksgiving and have it all done so we can enjoy the full season. The boys' tree in the playroom went up first so that they could get involved. Their tree is lit with multi-colored lights (kids LOVE those!) and decorated with all the handmade ornaments they've made over the years as well as cartoon characters and other special keepsake ornaments. Cole was much more into it than Travis this year. Travis was much more interested in what would go under the tree than on it. But Cole, in an amazing display of attention span (I knew he had one!) hung almost all the ornaments on their tree. When he was done, we had a beautiful 7 ft. tree with ornaments on the bottom 3 ft. only, sometimes 4 or 5 deep on one branch. But he was so proud! And I quietly spread them out after the boys were asleep. It does look beautiful and it's such a fun representation of all the stages they've passed through already.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Cole's Thanksgiving Feast

Shayne and I joined Cole for his preschool's Thanksgiving Feast. This is our fourth year to attend this particular event--twice with Travis and now twice with Cole. It's always fun to see them and all the great art/decorations they've made. And Cole was delighted to host us for such a special event at his school.
Doing the motions to the little song/prayer his class said before lunch. I wish I could remember how it went--it was sooo sweet!

So proud of his lunch guests!

Finishing off the the traditional Thanksgiving lunch of peanut butter crackers and fruit punch. Yummy...just like the Pilgrims!

Soaring Eagles

The 3-year-old classes at our preschool always make Indian headbands to wear to the annual Thanksgiving Feast. The teacher assigns them Indian "names" randomly. Just so happens Ms. Jana thinks both our boys are "Soaring Eagles!" She told me it was completely by chance that it happened and of course, that's true. After all, who could remember? Only a Mommy!



Thursday, November 20, 2008

Poor Cole...

Life is tough when you're three and have to wait in carpool line for your big brother.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Guy's Weekend

Shayne's dad, Jeff, came to Texas this past weekend for a guy's only hunting weekend. The boys were so lucky to get to spend the weekend "roughing it" with not only their Dad, but BOTH grandfathers! This was Shayne's dad first hunting trip, and after this weekend, he'll be feared by wildlife in South Texas. He got a turkey and a buck! Not bad for a first try. He's a natural! I sent my digital camera and this is what came back to me...pardon the carnage, that's just part of the deal!

Jeff aka Grandpa with the turkey he shot.

Travis and Cole posing proudly with Daddy and his 7 point buck.

My dad aka Pop with Jeff and the boys. Also pictured is the 9 point buck Grandpa shot, of which Cole is proudly displaying the antlers!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Sick :(

It's been a long week with a sick little Cole. Sunday afternoon it seemed like he was developing pink Sunday evening there was no doubt. Monday he had started running fever by the time we could get into the doctor. Tuesday he was on the mend and felt fine until he woke up Thursday with an ear infection. Another trip to the doctor later, I think we've got everything under control...hopefully!

The true sign of sickness for impromptu nap on the couch.

Travis' attempt to keep from catching "whatever Cole has." Actually he was just bored out of his mind waiting for Cole to be seen at the doctor's office. I told him that Cole was really sick and he should try to stay away from him, he replied, "I usually do anyway."
But, despite all evidence to the contrary sometimes, he really does love his little brother. On Tuesday, his teacher commented on Cole's health. When I asked Travis how she knew Cole had been sick he said that he'd made a prayer request for him during their morning prayer time. How sweet is that???

Monday, November 10, 2008

Psalm Recitation

Travis' first grade class performed another recitation on Monday. They recited Psalm 19 during the outdoor chapel service under the big oak trees. It was a beautiful morning and with the exception of having to chase Cole down and keep him from climbing on the nearby playscape, everything went flawlessly.
I realize this is not the best picture, but it was the best I could do. Travis is tenth from the right on the first row.
In Psalm 19, David extols that God's creation and his Word reveal his greatness. The fourteenth and final verse says, "May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord..."
Watching 21 first graders say this in unison left no room for doubt that indeed, He is pleased.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Soccer Season Ends

Travis had his final soccer game of the season this weekend. While I'm not sad that the twice a week practices have ended, I am a little bummed that there will be no more games. His little team was getting better with every week. And it was so cool to watch them really learn how to play this year. They came a long way! This was the first year for Travis to play in the U8 league where the field was HUGE and they had actual referees. Soccer may not be as truly "American" as baseball, but it's amazing exercise and a great way to learn teamwork. I hope he wants to play again next season...we'll see!
An "action" shot


Saturday, November 1, 2008


We had a great Halloween night with our little
Speed Racer...

and Harry Potter...

Because we don't live in a typical neighborhood, in order to get the real trick-or-treat experience, we visited our friends' and went out with them.
Here are their boys with their bags, ready to collect the loot.

Here are all four kids: Cole; Madeline (Cinderella); Travis; and Brandon (The Joker)
The Daddys started out with all four kids while the Mommies stayed back to pass out candy. But after about four houses, Cole decided he was scared of the dark and needed to be carried. By the end of the night, he was running a fever, so that damped Halloween for him considerably. The Mommies traded off and took the two big boys to finish the neighborhood and had a great time watching them go house to house. Thanks, Julie and Kevin, for letting us crash your neighborhood!