Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 Year in Review: LONG

Disclaimer: this post took me a LONG time and I must admit at one point I cried because I thought I lost 6 hours (yes, 6 hours of picture finding, editing, typing...etc) of please ignore any typos, I'm too tired to re-read everything. Thanks from you friends at the Flohr Ranch.
Happy New Year's Everyone!!

This is my first ever Year in Review Post....go grab a drink and something to eat, you may be here for awhile :-) Sit back, relax and enjoy the ride through our memory lane.

We start with last year's New Year's Eve '07...

We enjoyed a family dinner at the Longhorn restaurant. With two small kids, it's hard to make plans for a big shin-dig, and honestly, the crazies on the road scare me. I'd rather be in a safe environment, surrounded by my sweet little family. I'm pretty sure we were all in bed by 9 pm; we needed to start 2008 off with lots rest for the crazy year ahead!

January 2008

Our Big wee one turned 3! We celebrated at Chuck E. Cheese and then with cake and ice cream at home. Three turned out to be a very "interesting" year for Big wee one. We would go through mood swings in seconds flat! I also realized this year that Big wee one is EXACTLY like me! WOW! It's crazy to watch her and see that I do the same thing! I get frustrated with things I'm working on that don't go the way I want them to, and she does the same thing! Phew...Paul is in for a ride!Oh goodness...I'm showing everyone a seriously UGLY picture right here. Last year was a crazy year for my health. I am completely healthy, I just have a rare "birth defect". I have what is called an AVM (Arterio-Venous Malformation), which is an abnormal collection of blood vessels. What makes this even crazier is that 1)most AVMs are located in the brain 2)other locations for AVMs occur, but mostly in young children and are treated at a young age 3)my AVM is connected/intertwined with the blood vessels in my tongue. Because of it's location, treatment is tricky. The dr's can't really remove it, doing so would mean removal of the back of my tongue, but we do have to watch it closely, growth could block my airway, which is what was happening before I had surgery. What the dr's did decide to do was to go in through an artery in my leg, and shoot pellets into the AVM in my throat/neck to help stop the growth. The 2 hour operation turned into 7 hours and this is what I looked like when Paul saw me for the first time. Pretty right? One of the side effects from the surgery (like any surgery) is swelling, and since we are dealing with my airway, I had a breathing tube inserted before the surgery was even started (I was out though). The surgery went better then any of my dr's planned and I'm doing great! I went back for my check-up and my AVM hasn't grown or gotten smaller, so we'll just keep watching it and I'll go back again in another year and have more scans and talk about some other options (ie: radiation or just wait). See nothing serious :-)


The love month was a cold one. Things were pretty slow this month, we were gearing up for a busy spring just ahead. This picture of the wee ones was taken on Little wee ones 18 month birthday...a whole year and a half...crazy how fast her little life is flying by!


Geesh, it's been cold outside for so long! Look, the girls are just staring outside, wishing it was warm enough to play. I remember it looking beautiful outside on this day, but it was still cold! The weather tricks us like that sometimes, especially the wee ones. Soon enough it will be warm and we'll be outside ALL.OF.THE.TIME.

Easter fell really early in '08 (as you may know) :-) That didn't stop the girls from hunting Easter eggs! Mimi took us to an Easter egg hunt and Big wee one made me so proud! She is such a good girl; in her age group there were special "silver" eggs that the kids could find. I could see a lot of the parents taking their kids around to pre-find these special eggs before the hunt started, I knelt down beside Big wee one and told her that a lot of kids are going to be chasing after these eggs, and instead of fighting for them, just try to get 3 eggs (because she's 3 we do a lot of things in 3's). She did just that, got her 3 eggs, put them in her basket and then joined me on the side to go watch Little wee one. She told me later that she didn't want those eggs if the other kids were going to be mean to her to get them. No use fighting over something so silly, like a silver choclate egg.

Little wee one did good finding her eggs too. I realized after taking this picture, that maybe she was a little too big for that short, short dress...that's the style now right?


Behind the scenes, Paul has been leading up to this month. Lacrosse in FULL SWING! Lax season is very busy at our house. Paul has practice every night, scrimmages and then games start 2-3 times a week. On top of that, he meets with players on the side, strings sticks at home and meets with the coaches...a LOT! He is amazing with these guys, and they look up to him so much. Trojan lacrosse is like a second family for us, and the people that we have met are amazing! The school and players, have really welcomed Paul with wide open arms...wonder how they'll do their during their 2nd "true" varsity season??Here is a shot from a little baby shower we (we as in the MOms club) gave our friend Michele. Michele is one of my greatest friends, even though she moved to Frederick and I haven't seen her or met her new little man Alex...we all MISS YOU MICHELE! She will always be an amazing friend. Note to self in new year: go visit your friends! May

Lots of pictures to represent May.

Finally, we are outside and playing all the time! May starts summer, which starts dirty and grimey kids, and lots of extra-activities. I loved May.

Work is going great and I'm really enjoying my job. May started a summer event series called "First Fridays" with a kick off called "A Taste of the Arts". Artists lined the streets of downtown Chambersburg, along with other various activities, from clowns to musicians and lots of food and beverage samples. The weather was perfect for my first large scale event and my sweet little family joined me downtown.Every year the MOMs Club that I'm in has a Mother's Day brunch at a cool little restaurant in town called Emily's. We participate in a secret sister gift exchange for a month leading up to the brunch and then the day of we reveal ourselves. This year was especially special to me because of the support these ladies have given me through all my medical nonsense. A day doesn't go by that I don't talk to or email one of the amazing moms from this group! And these aren't even all of them! This brunch was delicious just like every other year, and I ended up with an awesome secret sister who went above and beyond and was extremely funny thoughout our gift exchange.We are still in full swing with lax. The season is really look good. Paul is still not home a lot (thank goodness for the moms above!), but he's doing what he loves and I love watching him do it :)Did I mention that May starts dirty and grimey kids? It also starts ice cream and popsicle season, and lots and lots of time spent with the kids below. Here is Cathy (who just moved :( ) with her youngest...I posted this picture of her, because she didn't like the picture of herself I posted here. LOL...hope you like this one better! Gosh, May is going to suck without you guys around to play with :(Aren't these little boogers cute...they sure did have a lot of fun together this year!During a rare free weekend we decided to take the girls to the DC zoo. This zoo is amazing! Except for the fact that since it is free, it is extremely packed, especially on a day that is as pretty as this day was! I think it took us over and hour and a half to park and finally I pursuaded Paul into parking illegally (daring, I know!)...the girls loved the zoo and seeing all the animals and the wagon ROCKED! I knew we were going to get some good use out of it when Grandma gave it to us 3 years ago :-)I was able to go to Paul's last home game without the girls, which was good because even though we've had some beautiful nights in May, this night was FA-REEZING! If I remember correctly, the Trojans CRUSHED the other team. Go TEAM!The end of May marks the end of Big wee one's first year of "school". This is Kate and Big wee one on the last day...they became great friends this year! See Big wee one's sense of style...she really defined herself this year as being a little girl who won't wear anything but dresses, the fancier the better. I'm glad she decided to end her first year of school as Maripossa (from one of the Barbie movies)...she makes me laugh!

Poor Little wee many others, May brought on a serious dose of allergies for our smallest wee one. Many days she woke up with both eyes swollen and a constant runny nose. This was her first "slap in the face" for allergy season, after the Memorial Day Parade :( We got some benadryl in her system and I learned to love those travel doses that benadryl makes, nice and quick when you need it the most.June

This was Big wee one's second year of dance and her first year to have a real dance recital. She did AWESOME! We were super proud of her. There are moments where she is a HUGE ham and other times where she doesn't like people to look at her...I was hoping & praying that this night was going to go beautifully and as you can see from the picture below that she was in a GREAT mood! All went well :-)Lacrosse is over, and Daddy is back. The team had an awesome season finishing 13-5 in the regular season and 0-1 in the playoffs. We were all thrilled that they made it to the playoffs! Below is the varsity team and our favorite sitter/manager/friend Kira at the lax sports banquet.Paul was named Coach of the Year for the Herald-Mail and Eric DeLong was named the MVP Player...he went on to play at Roanoke College.Finally, we get to hit the beach! We wished we could have gone to see Grandma & Grandad's at the beach more often, but busy schedules, and really high gas prices don't always mesh well with the beach. Big wee one loved the beach. She loved rolling in the sand and getting in the water, but Little wee one...not so much. She was fine just sitting on a blanket eating (sandy) snacks :-)Here goes Daddy on the 110th water run with the bucket :)


I took the girls up to our old stomping grounds (KoP and surrounding areas) to visit some friends that we haven't seen in awhile. Here are the girls having a "birthday party" (confetti being thrown here) with a great friend of mine...Meg. Isn't it cute how they all seemed to color coordinate?! We also got to see Andrea, and my girlfriends Sherry & Mikell and meet Sherry's newest addition Rachel. It was a nice trip and so awesome to see everyone. See previous note: visit friends more often this year.

Meg took us to a great park for kids and I caught this really cute picture of Little wee one coming down the slide. Such a happy girl!

These three had a blast together this summer! This is Sammy, he's our dapper neighbor :-) He loves to wear ties and suit jackets and top hats. Sammy and Big wee one got married over the summer...I wouldn't believe it either, except I was there. This blue car occupied these kids for HOURS! Just wait until later in the post, the car got a makeover.


August was a pretty busy month. Every night we met up with Dapper Sammy and the kids would paint the blue car. We aren't really sure how it started, but this car looked like a crazy 70s pimp mobile by the end of the month. They added to it every night. A little red here, a little purple there, oh and while I'm at it, I'll just paint my arms and I said this car occupied them for a couple of hours every night before and or after dinner.

The big man celebrated his birthday in August and we did it his favorite way with some of his favorite friends, Horn and the Villella's. When you think about Paul and summer you think: CRABS! The fool loves 'em! Not only does he love them, but so does Schellhorn. Those are some crab eating maniacs! Paul had a great birthday, eating crabs and then jamming to some tunes into the wee hours of the morning.In the middle of August we got this wicked hail storm. One minute it was nice and sunny out, then all the sudden the temperature dropped and we started to get pelted with cold little balls. Some of them got to the size of a golf ball. I've never seen weather like that in PA since I've lived here, but it sure did remind me of TX weather.Next in the month was Little wee one's second birthday. We had a nice family party at Mimi & G-pa's house and that little munchkin had a great time! Can you tell :-) She got a new bike, puzzles, clothes and some other toys. We made our new found favorite treat, ice cream cone cakes and enjoyed the heat with our families.We finished off August in Virginia at Paul's Mom's side of the family, family reunion (that was a mouthful). This was the first time that the girls and I had met any of them and it was so much fun! Paul hadn't been in YEARS and I think he was really glad to get back to his roots. The whole family was so warm and welcoming and to top it off, Big wee one was named Queen or Little Queen of the reunion, and got to wear this amazing crown! She was thrilled and didn't take it off for the next 3 days!Here are the wee ones visiting with a new cousin, we'll call her Tiny wee one :-) Little wee one LOVES babies, and was pretty enthralled with her all day. She was (and I'm sure still is) a little cutie :-)September

September brings back that back to school feeling. You know, the crisp new dress and pretty hairbows, the brandnew backpack and lunch box...the smell of a brand new school year is in the air. Little wee one started her first year of school in September at Mother's Day Out. She is in the Young Toddler class and had no problem what so ever adjusting. She walked right in on the first day, ditched me and her backpack and headed for the toys. Big wee one, she loves to go to school, but doesn't really love leaving me to get there. She's fine once I'm gone, but I think it is so interesting how completely different the girls are. Of course, I couldn't get one picture of both of the girls looking at me, but this was taken outside of their school on the first day. Behind them, the white building with the windows is where I work. I love that I can drive into work, walk them to school and then walk across the street to work :-)Uncle Eric came home for vacation in September. To celebrate a much needed break we took the jeeps and stretched their limbs some. The guys love to go wheelin' and I like to get out in the fresh air. This was a long day, and w were exhausted when we got home, but we had a fun time. Eric punctured his tire trying to go through a rocky area and then got stuck almost vertical trying to go up a huge was amusing to say the least.Do you need to stop for a bathroom break? I don't mind, I'll be right here...go ahead....geesh, this is taking you know that I have now been working on this post for about 5 hours total...oiy.


Here we are in October. My 10 year highschool reunion was in the beginning of the month. I was in charge of planning it, and with the help of some classmates, we had a pretty good turnout. That's me kneeling in the front with the purple shirt on. We stayed with my second Mom Shelly, and had a great time with them (and everyone else). This is how good I is now 2009 and I still haven't sent Shell & Joe their thank you gift...I think I'll do that tomorrow. Note to self: in the new year, send out mail in timely fashion.This is Lexie. She is my oldest and best friend. We have been friends for about 20 years! Crap, that is a long time! She lives in Dallas and since I live in PA we don't get to see each other very often. This was the first time we'd seen each other in about 3 years or so.Sometimes we have impromptu playgroups that end up lasting for hours and are so relaxing. We have a group of friends and all of our kids play together so well, we don't even really have to watch them because they are so good together. Instead, the mommies can sip their coffee and jab away. This picture is from one of those moments. I love how I asked the girls to smile and Nikkalicious in the background has the biggest smile. :)Whenever Uncle Eric is around we like to have a little dinner night that we call Taco Tuesday. The Flohr's and Hadley's can pack away some tacos...and Big wee one there, she loves those crunchy, yummy big boys :-) Uncle Eric had to head back out to sea shortly after this Taco Tuesday. Big wee one has a special place in her heart for Uncle Airwick.Of course you can't talk about october and not mention Halloween. Dorothy is heading out to a trunk or treat with Cathy, a pirate and Belle. The pirate isn't really smiling, he wouldn't ever do that for me, really he's saying "ARrrggghh". The kids almost didn't get to go on this little adventure. Cathy came over to tell me she wasn't taking the kids because some of the youngen's were having "listening issues" but I already had Big wee one's costume on, and she felt bad...SUCKA! The kids had a blast and oddly enough, this night marked our first snow fall of the year. It didn't stick but it sure was cold, and don't judge. A jacket just wouldn't look right with any of those outfits.Since you didn't get to see Little wee one above, because she was in bed, I had to post her cute little witch costume...she looks so sweet in this picture. The next day she was a football player, she's a girl that can go way princess or way tomboy. We love her any way!November

Awwww...look at those love birds. Paul and I celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary and 9 years of being together this month. We had a fabulous night out with good food, good drinks (notice winky eyed Tina) and lots of fun dancing. Throw in a parade and some police and you have a class act anniversary :-) Oh, and because we share our anniversary with Halloween, there were lots of interesting costumes this evening. We opted for a more traditional dinner attire and left the dress up for at home. Ok, that is not how it sounds! Haha...seriously, I'm funny sometimes. ;-)November slowed down some. We headed to Grandma & Grandad's for Thanksgiving, but for some reason, the mom who takes pictures practically everyday didn't take any pictures during Thanksgiving, so here is a cute picture of the girls in the tub. This is probably one of their most favorite places to be. Look at that ham...she's a goofball!December

Our trip down memory lane is nearing it's end. What a busy year we've had, and these are only the pictures I felt like posting...this post could have been much MUCH longer. I spared you all, I promise, and heck, even if I didn't all you have to do is "x" out of this joint.

So on to December...baking, baking, baking. Mimi and I (along with Lexie and many other friends through out the years) have made cookies at Christmas time for as long as I can remember. I love that we can now do this same tradition with the girls. Big wee one is so into everything Christmas this year, she's got the holiday bug.Little wee one on the other hand...though she has the holiday spirit is not into taking any holiday pictures. Which is why, if you usually get a Christmas card from me, you did not this year, because well, from everyone being so sick in December (Big wee one had the flu, Little wee one had the flu and I got the flu twice!) it just didn't happen. Sorry, don't take it personally.Big wee one had her school Christmas production. See previous 12 day post...she was tired that day, but worked through it. For some reason, and I'm hoping this is what some experts may call a "stage", she's been waking up before 5 am most mornings and playing. She plays so quietly that I don't hear her, but Paul wakes up early for work and she's usually awake before he is. Maybe 2009 will bring a later wake up call.Christmas of the best days ever with the girls. Oh man was Santa good to them this year! We did have to pull the 'ol Santa card on Big wee one a time or two, but she managed to stay on the nice list this year. No words can express how absolutely delightful they were this Christmas season and how much we love them. I'm just so happy I could know that feeling, nothing else compares to the joy except for tears. Ok, sappy, yes, but true :-)Happy New Year!This New Year's Eve we had a kid friendly party with friends. There were great friends and a TON of food, the best part: the girls got to stay up and rang in the new year with us and we got to enjoy some adult time with friends. Sorry we couldn't get a picture of all 4 of us together, but when dress up clothes are involved, Big wee one won't be around for long.

We hope you have a blessed new year and stick to your resolutions. I hope that next year's review post won't take me 5ish hours to prep...phew...thanks for the hanging in on the ride, the nice comments that many of you have left me and for letting me stalk your blogs. HAPPY 2009!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

This & That

What do you do the day your best friend moves away, and this will be your last time to play together for awhile? You do this:
Put make-up on with markers :-) I found it pretty amusing, but only because I knew it was their last time to play together...otherwise, my almost 4 year old should "know" better.

Well, Cathy, Mr. Matt and the kids have officially moved. It hasn't really hit Big wee one yet, though she says she's sad, she'll really get it when she asks to go play. I didn't cry, and that's only because Big wee one's birthday is in a couple of weeks, so I know they will try and come back for that. If not we'll go visit them :-)

I've been scrapping a lot lately...I'm in the groove. Here are some of the latest pictures from my time spent scrapping. I should update with a Christmas in Review with pictures and all that fun stuff, but I think I'll do that later tonight. Have a great day! We are off to a Countdown to Noon party that a MOMs club Mom is having...should be fun!