Wednesday, May 30, 2007

A Trip to Borst Mtn

May 19 we packed the minivan, loaded up the kids and headed for Borst Mtn. That's not actually the name of the mountain, just what we call it because the Borsts live there. They have a beautiful log home, and Jim and I have stayed there many, many times. This was our second trip with the kids, but our first overnighter.

Michele spends some time getting used to having a girl in her lap and a jealous boy at her knees. She and Matthew are expecting a daughter in September. Their son Andy watches closely. He wasn't so sure he liked sharing Mommy and Daddy with all those other kids!

Matthew playing with Zachary

Andy shows Zachary how the tray works

A table big enough for everyone!

This trip was a challenge, but it was worth it! We got to see Matthew who had just returned from an assignment in Africa, and celebrate his not getting killed while he was gone! (He's a federal agent) We got to see Michele all nice and pregnant! Michelle and Judah came up for the afternoon too, so we got to all hang out together and watch the kids play. It will be such fun watching all of them grow up together!

All the mommies and daddies! Three families, seven children, and one on the way!

Strangely, I didn't get a picture of John and Sue. They are Matthew's parents and owners of the lovely log home. I'll have to do better next time. We send a big thank you to them for allowing us to descend upon their household!

Belated Ten Month Pictures

Well, better late than never, right? Here are the ten month pictures that Michelle took of the kids in the front yard. They were not too keen on sitting in the grass, so there isn't a lot of smiling, but the pictures are pretty cute anyway!





All together!

Monday, May 28, 2007

I won!

Well, my Panthers won. But my Cherokee side lost. Sorry guys. I really hoped you would win! And I promise the next post will be about the babies. None of you really want to hear about me anyway! We all know that! Ha ha!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Me vs. Me

Just a quick post because this is fun for me. Tonight is the state championship high school baseball game, and who is playing? My school where I work (or did before the babies were born) South-Doyle and my own alma mater Bartlett! So I win no matter who wins! Of course, I have to say I'm pulling a little more for the Cherokees than the Panthers. My very own students are on that team, especially Ryan and Chad, some of the best students I've had. I hope you guys win! Good luck!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Future Harding Grads

Go Bisons!

Too bad for Daddy! There are no UT Volunteers here! We are all Bison this time! Thank you to my alma mater for the adorable shirts. I really do hope that at least one of them goes to Harding some day and carries on the family tradition. That would make four generations of Harding grads in my family, I think. Of course, Harding is a lot farther away from Knoxville than it was from Memphis! Oh well, there's plenty of time for the kids to pick colleges! They aren't even a year old yet! But it's coming! Just one more month!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Our First Molar!

Just a quick post to say Reagan has a molar! I was so surprised to see it yesterday! It's very exciting! I don't know if this is early for molars, but either way, she wins the molar award!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Happy Mother's Day!

I want to wish you all a Happy Mother's Day! This was of course my first Mother's Day, and I truly enjoyed it. We didn't do anything huge because we spent all of Jim's bonus check on the backyard, but we did have a nice day. It began with cards from Jim and the kids. They each got me one and wrote the sweetest things. It was really nice of the kids to let Daddy give me the cards before they got out of bed so they wouldn't be tempted to chew them up or tear them to pieces. Then we went to church where I think people went out of their way to wish me a happy day. It was very sweet! Jim was extra helpful all day with taking care of the kids which made a perfect gift for me. Then last night our former nanny Bradley watched the kids so Jim could take me out to dinner. She stopped in Knoxville on her way to a new nanny position in Florida. We went to Wasabi where we were seated next to a grandmother, her daughter, and her grandson. She told us she was 94 years old! She certainly didn't look 94! It was her 56th Mother's Day! We had a wonderful time talking to her about all the things she has seen and experienced in her 94 years. It was a great day!

I hope all of you moms out there had a great day too! Especially my mom, who has played such an important part in making me who I am today, and all the moms who have been an example and inspiration to me as became a mom myself! Happy Mother's Day!

Friday, May 11, 2007

A Yard Worth Playing In

As some of you know, our house used to have a screened-in back porch. The Spring before the babies were born, Jim and some very helpful friends and family turned that porch into an additional room which is now our playroom, and we don't know how we would live without it! However, with the addition of the room, we lost our porch and no longer had a good place to sit outside or a solid foundation for Jim's grill and our outdoor furniture. We also understand that eventually we're going to need a fence to keep the kids from toddling off into the creek that runs the length of our yard. So Jim's newest project was taking care of these two yard issues. He managed to plan the bulk of the work for the week my parents would be visiting which worked out well as my dad was a huge help!

The porch we used to have

Clay, Jim, Ken, and Bryon working on the new room

This is not a very good picture of the new room, but it's the only one I could find quickly. Sorry!

First we had some men come in and build a retention wall along the bank of the creek. Jim backfilled dirt to extend the usable surface of our yard. Plus, the wall gives us a nice solid straight foundation for putting up a fence later on.

The retention wall

Daddy Bud tamps down the dirt

All filled in except for topsoil

Jonathan watches his daddy drive the tractor

Jim uses the tractor to move dirt into place (much quicker than the day he moved it by shovel!)

Then we had some men come in and pour a patio outside the back door. It's just concrete, but they stamped, colored, and sealed it, so it looks just gorgeous!

Forming up the patio

Stamping in the pattern

The finished product--the straw is covering up the new grass seed

When all the grass grows in, we'll have a nice big yard for the kids to play in as they get bigger, as well as a lovely patio for cook-outs with family and friends, something we've always enjoyed!

Monday, May 7, 2007

The All-Crawl

It started with Jonathan.

Then came Thomas.

Then came Reagan.

And then came Zachary.

And now, everyone is crawling!

And so we have become a gated community...

...because without the gate we look like this!

Ooo, what's in this bag?

Hey! Let's look in Mom and Dad's room!

Cool, a box! With stuff in it!

Has anyone seen Zachary?


Sorry. It's been quite awhile since my last post. We've been sick. All of us. Me, Jim, the babies, trading a cold back and forth. Oh, the snotty noses we have wiped over and over and over. The bottles of cold medicine. The mountains of Kleenex. A couple of fevers. Many tears.

But we're mostly over it now. Thank goodness! There's nothing like being sick and still having to take care of four sick babies at the same time! It started the morning of the April 22. Zachary and Thomas didn't feel good and Thomas was running a slight fever. By the end of the week everyone was on cold medicine. It was very back and forth. One day one child would be miserable, the next day it was someone else.

And our poor company! We had family visiting for some of the worst of it. That was a real shame. I always like visitors to see the kids at their best! They're usually so great! Oh, well. More about our company later!