Saturday, May 29, 2010


"Hip Hill Happenings"
I don't really have any great pictures of us lately. We've been doing a lot of playing outside, swimming, etc. We went camping last weekend at Tannehill, and that was a blast, but it's pretty hard to tote your camera around on a bicycle, and we did a lot of bike riding, so no great pictures, sorry!
Anyway, in other exciting news, several months ago, a friend of mine called me and asked me if Mikey and I were still looking for a new house in Bagley. I told her yes, we were, and she said that she knew of a big nice house(we need a big house, because if these three little boys grow to be as big as their dad, then in approximately 10 years, I'll be surrounded by nearly fully grown men) that she heard was about to go into foreclosure. I knew exactly which house she was talking about, so I tried to call the girl who owns it, (not really someone I knew, but I like the house so I decided to jump on it). Anyway, she agreed to meet me that afternoon for a showing.
Long story short, we put in an offer
(and yes, we still own and are living in our same house, we have not put it up for sale yet!).
Then, we waited.
and waited
and waited some more.
I'm talking months here people!
All along we were reassured that this was totally normal, and that houses up for "short sale"* can take months.
* a short sale is when a buyer tries to purchase a house that has been foreclosed on from the bank(who now owns it) for less than the previous owner actually owed on the loan.
Basically, the bank agrees to take a loss.
Anyway, I had nearly given up on it when the real estate agent that is listing the house called my brother (who is our real estate agent), and told him that we had the highest offer, and that she thinks we are going to GET THE HOUSE!!
She said something about closing at the end of June!
Of course, I'm trying hard not to get my hopes up because we all know these things can fall through at the drop of a hat. But I do have my fingers crossed!
We are working furiously to get our current house prepared to put on the market!
That makes me a little sad. I mean it's where we came home to from our honeymoon. It's where we brought all three of our sons home from the hospital. Lots of great memories to say the least! It's a fact, though, regardless of whether we get the new house we're after or not, we've got to move before next fall because that is when Huett will start kindergarten, and neither Mikey or myself are big fans of the elementary school we are currently zoned for!
Anyway, we hope to have our house on the market next week, and we are praying for a speedy sale(hopefully that won't be wishful thinking), and I personally am a big fan of our house. Sure, I'm partial, but it is a nice big one-story house, and we've gone to great lengths to update it from one end to the other, and I think we've done a pretty good job. And when I say we, I mean my brother, Chad. He's done it all from the new roof to the remodeled bathroom, to the tile kitchen and dining room, to the landscaping! It's nice to have your own personal handyman, even if you do get put way down the list behind normal paying customers!
So, I have had visions of giant playrooms, formal living rooms, an office, a giant whirlpool tub, a big roomy garage, a beautiful kitchen, lots of closet space, a fenced in backyard, and the boys riding their bikes around on the cul de sac dancing around in my head ever since Chad told me the news.
Even though it really isn't news yet because there is nothing in writing, I'm still (ever so reservedly) excited!
Every room in the house needs a fresh coat of paint because, let's just say, the previous owners had some pretty eclectic(and by eclectic I mean not at all appropriate for this big pretty house) paint choices. For example, the wains coat in the foyer is painted RED, like blood red. The half bath in the foyer is BRIGHT YELLOW and they have painted the mirror purple(you would think maybe LSU fans, that is until you venture upstairs) In one of the four bedrooms upstairs, the walls are Auburn ORANGE and the ceiling is NAVY BLUE!! I don't care about the big Iron Bowl feud, but it's just awful!! But I am totally able to look past this, because I know what a fresh coat of paint can do!! I'm also not afraid of a little hard work, it might just do me some good, right? Oh, and I almost forgot to mention (how could I forget this) the decorative wall sayings that look like they are painted on. You've all seen them, and personally, I am a fan. In moderation, that is. One in your entryway, cute. One in your kitchen, cute. One it almost every single room in your house, overkill!
(I feel like I need to insert a disclaimer here: The original owner of this house, if any of my readers know her, did some really beautiful decorating when she lived here, then she got remarried, moved out, and was in some sort of "rent-to-own" agreement with some people, I don't know who they are, but anyway, the renters are the ones who did the crazy paint colors, and all the wall quotes. You can still see remnants of what the original owner had going on, and what she intended for the house, and I love it! So, this is not a dig at her. I could tell she was appalled at what the renters ahd done when she was showing me the house. I felt her pain! Whew, now I feel better)
So, I'm more than a little excited, and worried to death about making two house payments until we sell ours. I have tried to figure it out, and we should (will) be able to do it!! Maybe I'll just pick up a few extra shifts at work, and I'll ship Mikey off to work every hurricane that hits this hurricane season(it's being lauded as the most active hurricane season in recent history)!
Tired of reading yet? I have a whole other topic to address, but I'll save it for another post. I'm sure you are all coming down with a migraine from reading for this long, and about something that really isn't of much importance to anyone but me and mi familia!
Still, wish us luck, and cross your fingers, but only on one hand. Everyone knows crossing more than one set of fingers is just bad luck, duh.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


A few weeks ago, Mikey and I took the boys to the zoo. It was on this day that we got our first glimpse at the fun the future holds for us with three sons. This was, I think, the first time we ventured out alone since Charlie was born(besides Wal-mart, church, and maybe Jack's, I mean we couldn't let Charlie keep us from Jack's). It was actually a beautiful day. We were both pleasantly surprised by how peaceful it went. All three boys had a great time. Huett and Sam got to play in the water fountains, and we got to see lots of fun animals! Also, of course, the standard zoo train ride!

The two boys in this picture can only be referred to as

cool cat daddios!

Upon arrival, we had to stop at the gift shop and buy the boys these sunglasses because they were squinting terribly on the walk in from the parking lot! Also bought: a "spyscope" which you see in Huett's hands, and a "magic wand" AKA a clear baton filled with water and glitter for Sam!

A nice passerby offered to take our picture in front of this lovely bamboo forest. She just so happened to have a camera identical to mine! Thanks lady, if you're out there!

Note to self:

Stop bending down in all the family pictures. It is neither flattering or necessary! No one ever said you have to be level with your kids for pictures. Everyone knows you are taller than them, as you should be.

Charlie (accidentally) got some sun on our little trip but I'm not really sure if it was sun or just redness from the heat because it was gone by the next morning. He was loving it while we were cruising him around in his stroller!

Here we waited patiently in line for the train while we watched in amazement at how the algae and moss that was floating on the pond in the background was sucked down a drainage pipe that was right beside us. It was so gross, however, we just couldn't look away!

I was mildly disappointed to see that they've moved the flamingos from the entrance of the park and have replaced them with parrots or macaws or whatever you want to call them. I mean, yes macaws are impressive, however, I think they lack the wow factor that the flamingos have. But that's just my opinion. And, if I recall, I don't think anyone from the zoo ever asked me what I thought about it.

The success of this trip has emboldened us to venture out as a family more often, and that excites me!

(This trip to the zoo happened a month before our trip to Chattanooga, but I am just now posting the pictures from it!).

Brave we've become.

Sunday, May 16, 2010


For Easter, I wanted to try something new that I saw on a bakery blog that I thought looked neat and easy. Her recipe called for using cake mix and icing ( bake the cake and then mix the whole can of icing in). I, however, took the advice of my co-worker Brittany and made them with an Oreo truffle center! Great idea btw! It was delish!

You start out with just a standard pack of Oreos. I think next time I may try double-stuf but I can't vouch for how those might turn out because I've never tried it.

You put them in a food processor (or a blender might work as well) but I don't think you could crush them up fine enough by hand and I'll show you why.

It needs to be about this consistency to make the creamy texture necessary for the next steps. Andy no, I did not remove the cream. It will be black like all you used was the cookie, but I promise the cream is in there.

This is what is will look like and it is moist to the touch.

Next, you take one 8 oz. block of cream cheese (I'm sure the whipped kind would've worked fine) and mix it up completely. For this step I used my mixer. Well, actually my mom's mixer because I made these at her house. What, you though I owned a food processor? Wrong.

Then you take the truffly mixture and roll them into balls about the size of a ping-pong ball, not quite as big as a golf ball(you could make them however big you like as long as you don't plan on putting them on a stick.) If they are any bigger than the size you see here, you'll have a hard time keeping them from falling off the stick once you start dipping. Once you've made the truffle balls, refrigerate them over-night, or if you're in a hurry, stick them in the freezer for an hour!

Then I bought these miniature cookie cutters because the original directions from the website I linked earlier called for a small flower shaped cookie cutter to make the bottoms of the

cupcake-look-a-likes (you'll see what I'm referring to in a minute). However, the flower I bought was too big. It was the smallest one they had at Hobby Lobby so I don't know where you could get one any smaller. I substituted this small bottle cap from an unopened bottle of paint and it worked perfectly.

I bought these colored candy wafers that worked perfectly for dipping once they were melted. They also came from Hobby Lobby. Be sure you follow the melting directions precisely like when it tells you to use the defrost setting on your microwave, DO IT, trisha.

I used pastel Easter M&Ms, sucker sticks, and an assortment of sprinkles for decorating.

They were just so festive! I love sprinkles!

This was our final product! An Easter tree, if you will. They were delicious. It would've been much easier just to take the original balls and dip them in just one color of chocolate, but that would've been nothing like decorating Easter eggs, however, that's probably what we'll do next time for time's sake. Maybe with just a few sprinkles though.

We used the bottle cap I mentioned earlier to narrow the bottoms of some of the balls, which we then dipped in brown chocolate and let dry. Once that had dried, we dipped the top in colored chocolate and added the decorations that made it look like a mini-cupcake! So cute!

Here we have an Easter egg pop! Cutes boots!

The flower pop! We used syringes to do the detailed decorating!

The butterfly, Ava Claire's favorite.

Anyway, even if you don't get into the decorating aspect of this delectable dessert, it was incredibly simple to make the oreo truffles and it would've been quick and easy if we'd just dipped the balls into the chocolate and skipped the intricacies of the decorating. I would totally recommend it. Not to mention that everyone raved over the deliciousness that is the Oreo truffle! Enjoy!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Hippity Hoppity, Easter's come and gone!

I love Easter! I love it so much that I called in to work so that I could spend Charlie's first Easter with him(and the rest of our family). I just could not justify missing his first Christmas and his first Easter, and his big brothers are at the prime age for Easter egg hunting and you don't get these days sue me!

Anyway, we were all dressed up, and as much as I was hoping for some prime photographs, it was just so busy that the chance didn't really present itself. I do love this picture of my sweet little family. It finally seems complete, now that the third baby we always knew we wanted is here!

They are three of a kind.

It seems surreal sometimes to think that I have three sons. I mean I'm still the cool party girl that snagged the hottest guy around, who just turned twenty-one and only works three days a week, spending all the other days doing whatever I want to do, right?

What? What's that you say? That's not me anymore?

Because in my head it still is.


Anyway, Arch the Barch and Ava Tolbs were in prime condition in their matching bows(his bowtie, her hairbow) that Trisha made! He was just starting to toddle around these days.

We tried so hard to get him to walk that day that he went on a one week walking strike, simply proving what I already knew to be true.

You don't mess with the Arch.

Taiden Elizabeth made her appearance and she was a precious angel! So stinkin' cute! Mikey seems to think she looks like me, and I can't disagree because Ava and Teagan don't even begin to look like me at all, so I take that as a compliment! Can't wait to get to babysit them sometime soon! I need some femininity around here, and so does Ava Claire!

Mikey needs a daughter. I still feel like there's one out there for us. He is a great dad to sons, obviously, but he'd be incredible for a daughter. I still want that for both of us! But want is all I can do!

Mom made all the kids ( even Charlie and Taiden) matching chocolate bunny shirts with their names monogrammed on them. They were so cute!

Huett looking so handsome in his Easter frocks

Sam looking chill in his.

He is just such a cool kid. He keeps us laughing.

There's just something about him, and I can't put my finger on it!

Love him!

Charlie was mistaken for a girl numerous times in this outfit. In my defense, his outfit had little alligators on it(not feminine at all)! Whatever. I love it!

Looking a little more masculine here!

Archer is chillaxin' in the lounger out in the beautiful weather!

The beauty that is Ava Claire.

And yes, I took this photo!(as I toot my own horn)

Happy (late) Easter everyone! We should celebrate the resurrection all year long, so I'll use this as my excuse for postponing my Easter blog post for so long.

Hope everyone enjoyed it as much as we did, and thank God for giving us the reason!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Kidsmarket Spring 2010

I can't believe I haven't even mentioned all of my "steals" from the Spring consignment season of 2010. Geez, that last sentence makes me seem like such a fanatic. I can't rightly say that it would be an incorrect assumption!

This is all of the stuff I bought at Kidsmarket
and at the sale at Mount Vernon United Methodist Church in Gardendale!

I bought this $160 highchair for $60 and I swear it looks like it's never been used! It matches our kitchen table and chairs almost perfectly.

Our table is counter-height (that's just a fancy name for those tables that are taller than normal ones) and this reaches right up to it, and the wood stains are almost identical!

I got one of these outfits at each sale! These are Zack and Ali brand hand-knitted outfits! Charlie's "coming home from the hospital" was that brand and we (well, my mom) bought it from Jack and Jill in downtown Homewood. It was $70+ dollars for his newborn outfit. That's how I know these outfits had to be around $50 originally! I got one for $10 and one for $15!! They are so cute on him, and I have gotten tons of compliments already!

This is a smorgasbord of my fave buys for Charlie!

This Old Navy bathing suit is brand new and it was $10 for shorts and shorts!

I got an array of Polo outfits and they were all less that $10. In case you haven't priced children's Polo clothes lately, they are really expensive, but they hold up wonderfully. So, that's quite a bargain!

I love the colors in this shirt! And then they had the Polo shorts to match it!

Same thing in this picture. And the pink shirt still had the tags on it!

Now on to some of the big boys buys (they are in the same size clothes, so they share a closet, and everything that goes into that closet!

This cute GAP bathing suit and matching T-shirt were like $8!! It can be worn as a regular outfit as well!

This outfit is so cute on them! The shorts are really long and they look cool in their flip flops!

Matching cut off sweats and muscle shirts!

Love it!

2 color coordinated Gap T-shirts $10.00

Ralph Lauren swimsuit: $8.00

2 pairs of Ralph Lauren pants(blue and white)
1 pair of plaid GAP pants
all around $10.00 a piece

Brand new shiny basketball outfits (as Sam likes to call them)

Basketball outfit with tags on it for Huett
Regular $39.99

2 big boy Polo shirts $8.00 each

Clothes in action!

It feels so good knowing all the money I've saved!

Clothes in real action!
All in all, I spent around $600.00 for all of their summer clothes (that's about $200 a piece)
If I had bought all of these clothes brand new it would have been atleast $2000, so I saved atleast %70 if not more!
Go me! Go me! Also, thanks again to my wonderful husband for spending the night in the parking lot to reserve my place in the front of the line!!