Thursday, March 31, 2011

fishing, POWER, choir, farewell

We spent some time a few Saturdays ago fishing in the neighborhood. Gracie & Katie each caught something. I think Gracie caught 3, but we're pretty sure at least 2 of them were the same fish!

Gracie was pretty brave when it came to the worms. Braver than me!

Daddy with his girls.

After fishing, it seemed a good day to climb a tree!

We were soooooooo proud of Gracie when her POWER essay was chosen as the WINNER of all the 5th grade essays. POWER is similar to DARE. She got to read her essay in front of everyone at the evening POWER graduation. She did a fabulous job writing the essay, as well as reading it in front of everyone!

Of course there were refreshments!

Last Saturday, we went to Moody Gardens in Galveston to watch Gracie's 5th grade choir perform. They did such a good job!

Sunday evening was bittersweet. We said "good bye" to our wonderful Children's Director as she & her husband have moved to Dallas to work with a different church. Jennifer always did such a great job with our children, and she is already dearly missed. *sniff, sniff* We are looking forward to having our newly hired Children's Director join us in June. Jennifer left BIG flip flops to fill :) but I feel confident that Amanda will be great as well.

Springtime, Reading Restaurant, & Softball

Spring has arrived! Well, for the most part anyway. We've actually had some cooler days lately, but it's still been really nice. Ellie & Katie find themselves playing in the backyard while I'm making dinner and waiting on Daddy to get home. This little cozy coupe was a hand me down from a friend in South Carolina who got it as a hand me down from some family of hers. I think she decided it's probably about 18-19 years old. That's what I call a well made (& well loved) toy! Ellie enjoyed doing her own homework the other day while Gracie did hers. Yesterday, I enjoyed Reading Restaurant with Katie. It was such a cute 1st grade activity! Chef Katie Showing off her reading. My souvenir flower. Our greeting to the "restaurant."

If you give a mouse a cookie.....or if you give Katie a cookie....

The 2011 softball season is upon us! Katie is excited to play again, especially with Daddy as her coach this year and a good friend playing on her team!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Selena for Katie's birthday & stitches?!?!?

The Sunday afternoon before Katie's birthday, March 6, I was sooo excited to give Katie a really fun SURPRISE afternoon! I had gotten tickets for her, Gracie, & me to see Selena Gomez in concert! We were also going to spend the afternoon at the carnival, livestock show, & rodeo! Chris & Ellie were going to join us for part of the time and then leave when we went to the rodeo & carnival.

We started the fun by letting her choose where we went for lunch after church, Fuddruckers. She enjoyed playing video games.

She loves her new 'purse' she bought earlier that weekend. We've tried telling her that it's really a makeup bag, but she doesn't care. LOL

Finally, when we were ready to head to the BIG surprise...Selena...we told her the surprise! She was sooooo excited!

Loooong story short.....bad traffic.....uninformed rodeo goers that we are (were!)......blah, blah, blah, uneven sidewalk, blah, blah, blah, carnival scanners that didn't work, blah, blah, blah......CHRIS ended up going with Katie & Gracie to the carnival, rodeo, & concert while I took Ellie to 3 doctors which ended in screams, tears, & 4 stitches! UGH

Yes, I don't feel like relaying every detail, but my little girl went from the HEB clinic to the urgent care clinic to the ER.......

This is at the urgent care clinic. She's smiling....but still needed 4 stitches.

Here are the 4 stitches. Poor thing.

Next day...smiling again! She looked like a little old lady with whiskers growing out of her chin! LOL

Here she was a week later, about to get them taken out. OUCH! She didn't like that either!

They are now out, and it appears to be healing nicely.
So...ask Chris how much HE enjoyed Selena Gomez in concert! ha

Happy 7th birthday, Katie Brooklyn Shanks!

Thursday, March 10 was Katie's 7th birthday!!!!!!!!!! It's so hard to believe our sweet Katie Boo is 7 years old! She is so FULL of life. She feels each & every emotion so deeply, whether it's happiness, sadness, frustration, don't have to guess how she feels about a situation! LOL We love her soooooo much & are eternally grateful to God for allowing us to be her parents! :)

She is currently working hard at completing reading the New Testament in 90 Days as part of a challenge at church. She is doing a good job. She is doing a great job in school, too. She still loves to play outside but also likes reading a lot. Diary of a Wimpy Kid books are her new favorites!

She requested my homemade brownies to be her treat for friends at school! (and yes, her teacher approved the homemade brownies to be brought!)

The biggest surprise Katie got for her birthday was that after school, we went to run a special errand that involved us driving to the airport. By the time she realized we were at the airport, I think she figured out what was going on.....we were picking up Grammer & Pappy!!!!!!!!! She told them, "You coming was on my list of things I wanted!" LOL It was fun!
We crawled home from the airport....bad traffic....then made her requested bday dinner. Tortellini with this special sauce we like (like a tomato cream sauce). We also had salad & garlic bread and more brownies! She requested those over a cake.

Can you tell she's excited?!

She enjoyed opening gifts after dinner. (Notice the's been a long day! LOL)

We love our sweet Katie boo!

visit with Pappy & Grammer

The girls enjoyed having Grammer & Pappy here for a surprise visit this last week! Ellie enjoyed being 'wocked' (here, I think she is playing possum!) and having a tea party with Grammer (who taught her how to hold out her pinky).
Friday, G&K had school and Chris had work, but Ellie, Grammer, & Pappy and I went to a local place that has a great restaurant, shop & nursery. Mom helped me choose some more flowers for some pots in our yard. Not long after G&K got home from school, Chris got home and he & I headed to the rodeo & Lady Antebellum concert! night! :) Gotta love the free babysitting provided by grandparents! :) Due to a bit of miscommunication, we didn't have good "Skip seats" this time, like when I went to Clay Walker and Chris and G&K went to Selena Gomez, but we still had a fun time. Gotta see how the other half lives, right? LOL
The next day, we headed BACK to the rodeo with all of us! Well, this time we didn't actually go to the rodeo, but we went to the livestock show & carnival. I just knew Mom & Dad couldn't be here during this time and not experience this Houston event! They don't have too many things like this in Atlanta!
We spent a good portion of the day there, looking at the animals, eating, somewhat accidentally catching a Ranch Rodeo, doing the carnival, etc. It was a long day but really fun and pretty much perfect weather!
I wasn't a big fan of the ferris wheel, but apparently the rest of them liked it! Next time, I think I'll let someone else use my 10 tickets it took to ride it! LOL
Aren't you supposed to kiss while on the ferris wheel?

Katie was much less interested in the rides than winning fabulous prizes at the games!

Ellie was brave enough to pet Beauregard. He is Elsie, the Borden cow's, baby.
Daddy helping identify the animals.


In Kids' Country, they have a really neat farm exhibit that I found to be very well organized & educational. Very cute & fun!

Grammer decided the cowboy hat would help keep the sun off of her face! Yee Haw, Grammer!

feeding the chickens their corn

planting their vegetables

looking at the sheep

milking the cow

We kind of stumbled upon a Ranch Rodeo while looking for the llamas, so we watched for awhile. A smaller version of the big rodeo; still entertaining.

Katie & Ellie in the tractor!

finally found the llamas....interesting animals

...and alpacas

It was a long day, but fun!

Katie was a tired girl!
Grammer & Pappy, ready for church with the girls

After church Sunday night, we went for pizza where Pappy helped Ellie "play" video games
We introduced Pappy & Grammer to SKYPE, by talking with Gramps & Gramme. Now, we just need Pappy & Grammer to get it so we can talk to them & see them at the same time.
Monday was a rainy kind of day most of the day. Tuesday started out prettier. Before taking Grammer & Pappy back to the airport, we took the girls to the park, ate lunch, then headed to the airport. As usual, it went too quickly, but we're glad they were able to come! Unfortunately, Mom & I ended up not feeling well by the time the visit was over....headache, swollen throats, etc. Who gave it who??? Guess we'll never know! ;)

Gracie & the top!
That slide went faster than either of them expected! LOL
Katie, concentrating on the monkey bars.

Pappy, helping Ellie do the monkey bars.
It was a fun visit!