Archive for May, 2012


Memorial Day weekend at the Octaranch

We had a relaxful Memorial Day weekend with my family in College Station at my parent’s Octaranch!

the Octaranch

There was rides on grandpa’s riding mower

Grandpa taught Asher how to shoot a bow and arrow

Asher could swing for hours!

Learning how to shoot a bb gun!

Collecting rolly pollies (one of my favorite things to do as a child too!)


Going hiking on the land behind the house

grandpa and the kiddos

My parents land goes right up to the Brazos river!

James the mountain man?!?

Asher throwing rocks in the river (I was a little nervous watching this…James is on a slope!)

This is one of my favorite pictures from the weekend…grandpa leading Rilyn and Ella

through the forest

Walking back to the Octaranch (aka the tree house) with my sister and her dog

S’mores at dusk!

Rilyn and grandpa talking while the sun goes down. Questions included “What came first, dinosaurs, or Adam and Eve?” Rilyn could of talked to grandpa all night…


The kids had no trouble falling asleep Sunday night!

dreaming of their great day!

what to give someone who has everything

My mom’s 60th birthday was this past week.  She will tell you that she has everything she ever wanted, and that she doesn’t want anything from me (well, except to keep sending her pictures of the grandkids!).  Every year, it’s very hard to find something meaningful to get her!  Since it was her 60th, I wanted to do something extra special for her!

mom with her grandbabies!

One present from me and my sister was this:

I saw this on Pinterest first, and there is a website to go and print it from home (for $9)! These numbers represent my parents’ birthdays, their anniversary (in white), and then their kids’ birthdays. I saw one like this also that said on the top “What a difference a day makes” 🙂

my mom hugging on the girls
my mom hugging on Asher

I bought my mom some sparkler candles that were really fun to watch!  I also made her a word cloud from here.  To make it, I asked many of her friends/family to e-mail me 3 adjectives that describe my mom!

Word cloud on the left

The final gift was “60 memories of Norine”. Two months prior, I mailed out/facebooked/e-mailed as many of her friends/family as possible to send one memory of my mom-the more nostalgic the better! I bought her a trunk, and put all the cards in it that I had received! Rilyn and Ella made a scavenger hunt around her house, and she loved finding the trunk and reading all of the memories!

what’s inside?

Many memories made her cry!

I love you mom!


end of the school year!

Quick update on our end of school festivities!

This is the last day of preschool for Asher.  We celebrated at school with a teddy bear lunch!  He had a great year, and is a super smart boy!  He did have a remark on his report card that said “easily distracted by friends” and we definitely know this to be true!  😉  Next year, he will go to preschool everyday half-day!!

At Ella’s kindergarten awards, she received the “writing award”! She had an awesome year, with an awesome teacher! We are very proud of her!!

Rilyn had a wonderful year too in 2nd grade. Here she is at her awards ceremony!

Ella had a field trip to a bounce house to celebrate the end of school!

jumping in the foam pit!

Rilyn got 4th place out of 120 2nd grade students in the spelling bee! We were so proud of her! She got out on the word “fought”. She spelled it “faught”.


first camping trip!

James took the kids on Mother’s Day/my birthday weekend for their first camping trip!  He met his family at Lake Mineral Wells State Park in Mineral Wells, Texas.  It was a rainy weekend, so I was nervous, but because James’ mom is a professional camper, they had no problem with a little water!  🙂

Oma in her element!
The kids’ first time to set up a tent!
Asher doesn’t mind the rain!
Isn’t camping for getting dirty?!?
some creepy crawlies around their campsite!
watch Uncle Ben fish
learning how to roast the perfect marshmellow!  Asher is a little nervous…
chillin’ on the cool camping “rocking” chair
rilyn and daddy
trying to look tough?!?
can you see Asher’s head between the two big rocks (right in the middle of the picture)
at the top!
Ella using her muscles!
so proud that she climbed it!  (with Allen)
James and his momma!  What a special memory!

their 4th recital!

The girls had their 4th recital yesterday!  I can’t believe 6 year old Ella has had 4 recitals already!  The recital theme was Keep Austin Dancing!  Rilyn danced to ROCK the USA!  Ella danced to Pretty Woman for tap and Sunrise for ballet.

Rilyn in the middle of the pic, fist pumping
half of Rilyn’s face seen in the middle of the pic
Rilyn in the middle-curtain call!
Ella in the middle
Ella in the middle-curtain call!

After the recital, Asher presented Ella with roses and cousin Caden gave Rilyn roses!

proud of these two girls!!
family pic!
Thanks grandma and grandpa for coming!
Thanks aunt Becca, Caden, and Uncle Jeff for coming!


May is the busiest month of the year for our family by far!  With my birthday, mother’s day, both our moms’ birthdays, end of school activities, dance recitals, etc. we have our heads spinning!  Here is a quick update of our May (so far) in pictures:

Asher and I went out on our first date together to Chick-fil-A’s Mother Son Date Knight.  The restaurant went all out in the medieval theme, and they even had questions at every table for things to talk about with your son.  One question I asked him was, “How can you protect me Asher?”  Asher told me he will protect me from cars.  😉

first date
Asher being knighted by a 6’5″ cow
there were bounce houses in the parking lot!

For my birthday and Mother’s Day, James let me have a relaxful weekend, and took the kids for the weekend to Fort Worth/Dallas.  They spent time with family, and the kids went on their first camping trip! More pictures to come later, but for now:

James, the kids, wtih their aunt, future uncle, and Oma

On Mother’s Day, we met back up in Temple at my parents house, and the kids went swimming and had a barbeque. The water was still a little cold I guess!

Rilyn jumping in for the first time!  (I think I put the sunscreen on too heavy on her face!)
Asher was NOT HAPPY with the water temp.!

After they got used to it, they started smiling again!

Ella has a rule:  having no goggles means she uses floaties!
jumping for joy
She found some goggles!
my almost 8 year old!

tutus and choo choos

Our girls’ dance recital is this Saturday-perfect excuse for a photo shoot!!  So my daughters’ and two of their friends headed out to the train tracks to strut their stuff! Check out my photography website for some more of my favorites!

Rilyn in her hip hop duds

My photography business!

May 2012
« Apr   Jun »