Monday, August 27, 2007

Three Days And Counting!

We will leave on Thursday to go to Georgia to visit Anne and Bryan! We won't actually see them until Friday, but we are getting excited anyway. This morning I put this summer's pictures of Anne and Bryan up in Jack's room, right above his bed, so that he can see their faces every day. As I was getting them ready Jack was saying their names over and over again (Neeh-neeh and Bubba) and putting his face right up into their faces on the pictures and giving them "kissies". It was so sweet and sad all at the same time. We sure do miss our Sissy and Bubba. But we will see you soon!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Sweet Baby Sinders

Today we celebrated the coming of a new baby into our family--Jeff's sister, Jill and her husband Gary are expecting their first baby on September 20. Sharon, Ashly and I gave Jill a baby shower today and it was so much fun! This baby truly is a miracle from God and we are SO thankful that both Jill and the baby girl are doing fine, and that there is not much longer to wait! Jill was diagnosed with a very agressive, stage four endomitriosis last year, and went through two major surgeries, but praise God--she was able to get pregnant in a very short amount of time after her surgeries and completely naturally (no fertility treatments)! We are so excited to see this special baby girl. I'm sure there will be a flurry of pictures when she finally arrives!

A Very, Very Belated Birthday Blog

On August 17, Jeff turned 33! We celebrated by going out to eat while Jack stayed home with Memaw (don't worry, Jack got to spend LOTS of time with daddy the next day as you will see in the slides). Surprisingly, we happened to run into Gaylene, Scott, Melisa, Matt, Kari, and Lee while we were there! Ok, so it wasn't a surprise for me, but Jeff was very surprised. We had a great time together and then went to see a very unfortunate movie that we cannot recommend to anyone, especially since most of it was viewed with our head in our hands. Anywhooooo.....

The next day Jeff took the ENTIRE day off. Now, if you look it up, the next day was Saturday, and you may be asking yourself, "why would it be such a big deal for him to take a day off on Saturday"? Well, the last time he did that was when the kids were here and that was weeks ago. We were very excited to all be home together, especially Jack, who loves waking up his daddy. We had a wonderful breakfast together, and then we spent the whole day outside. It was a gorgeous day! We had several projects that we worked on, and Jack stayed outside with us for everything except his nap :-)

First, Dad and Jack got on the tractor and graded the lane. Then Mommy and Jack cleaned out Mommy's car and made it pretty again. Then Daddy and Jack changed the oil in Mommy's car, then in Daddy's truck. Then Mommy and Jack watched Daddy cut down the monstrous, overgrown tree in the front yard that was completely blocking our view out the picture window. Then Daddy and Jack hauled away the tree and all the branches. Then all three of us got on the tractor and hauled a HUGE rock from the woods up to the front of the house and placed it over the stump from the fallen tree (Mommy has landscaping plans for the future). After all that hard work we came inside and ate some watermelon. Jack and Daddy LOVE watermelon. They shared a piece, and Jack got so excited that he stuck his entire head IN the watermelon! It was without a doubt the very best day that we have had together for a long time. Today daddy was working away from home all day, and it helped to look at these pictures and remember our perfect day together. We love you, daddy!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

A New Haircut and a Busted Lip

Jack's smiling face is NOT representative of his demeanor while receiving his first official haircut! For months now I've been snipping away at his hair with scissors while he was in the bathtub, trying to keep his long locks at bay. Every time I try to even comb his hair he gets all freaky, and turning on clippers that close to his head just practically sends him into convulsions. But today I decided I'd had enough, and this boy was gonna get his hair cut. I didn't mind it long - I've no crazy notions that he has to be this clean-cut looking little boy - but it was so incredibly uneven! Of course, my snipping here and there was doing nothing to help. So, I put him in his high chair and gave him several Cherry Cordial Kisses (which he LOVES), still wrapped (so he had something to do with his hands), and amidst screeching and wailing and alot of chocolate eating, he got his first haircut with the clippers.

I think he looks pretty good! When I was all done and put the clippers away he said, "bye bye -- yay!" Then he gave me a very dirty look. Look at the beautiful white-blonde hair I collected! No, I didn't save it - I just took a picture to remember it by.

And, oh yes, he fell out of his rocking chair last night (while standing up backwards in it) and busted his lip - again.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Beginning of Something Good

This morning my dear mother-in-law came over and helped me can tomatoes. Well, I guess she did most of it and I watched while managing Jack and answering the phone. I think I could probably do it all on my own now, but I have to tell you, there is just something so special about having the mother of the love of your life come over and help you store up some of his favorite goodies. Last year I had this measly little tomato plant that I paid $20 for (it was a patio tomato), and it only produced 5-6 tomatoes. Every time I fed one to Jeff he would teasingly say, "how much is this one worth, honey, five dollars"? I am happy that this year my tomatoes have produced much more than 5-6 and that I now have my first batch of 5 full quarts! What's even better is that there are so many more green ones still yet to turn, and I've already eaten about 10, all sliced up and fried to a dark golden brown in olive oil! Yum. Now that we've finally figured out what we're doing, we're planning a much larger, more complicated garden for next year.

For now, I am really enjoying the time spent at Grandma Poo's elbow, learning not just about how to can tomatoes, but things about my husband and his family that only come out when you are working together. For instance, Sharon told me that Jeff learned multiplication by her rows and rows of canned goods. He would ask, "how many are there" and she would answer that he could count each one or he could multiply one row by another and come up with the same answer. Folks, little things like this is why my husband is the genius that he is. He had a mother who used ordinary things to teach him life-time skills. At any rate, we had a great time and the tomatoes look sooooo pretty!

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Concert

Last evening we took the entire Dutton family and went to the Indiana State Fair, most importantly, the Casting Crowns/Jeremy Camp concert. We were very excited about this for several reasons.....
1. Jeff and I haven't been to a concert together since the Toby Mac/Third Day concert almost 3 years ago, and, well, it was just time to go to another one.
2. The Duttons had never been to a Christian concert. Mark had been to plenty as a kid--Aerosmith and Black Sabbath to name a couple. So it was going to be interesting seeing their reaction.
3. Mark Hall and Jeremy Camp rock.
4. Jack was at home with Memaw.
5. Indiana State Fair = Deep-fried Oreos.

That was just the anticipation of the event. It was awesome! It was the farthest away we had ever sat from the stage (almost the nosebleed section), and it was incredibly hot, but the sound system was great and God sent along some awesome clouds and a very nice breeze to keep us from sweltering in the heat. When CC was singing "Praise You In The Storm" I thought it would be awesome if God sent a clap of thunder right in the middle of it.

So what was our favorite part? I think that Jeff and I would both agree that our favorite part was watching the Duttons. They came to this concert with completely open hearts, going through an incredible "refining" process right now, and were completely blown off their feet, not just by the music and the praise to God, but by the ministering of the Word that both Mark Hall and Jeremy Camp so clearly presented. Mark said later that he felt that Jeremy was speaking directly to him. Now, isn't that funny? Most of the times when Mark preaches, I feel as though he is doing the same for me. Strange to hear your pastor say that about himself and someone else. At one point I observed Mark sitting down with his head in his hands, and I asked Laurie, "Is he alright?" and she replied, "He's praying". It was very cool. The kids LOVED it. I've got a kind of grainy video that we took with our digital camera and the best part about it is watching Matthew's face while he sings! It was a great night, and a precious memory with our dear friends that we will always treasure. Jeff and I were extremely excited when they announced that Toby Mac and Jeremy Camp would be back in Indy on February 28! We're already planning to go. Any other Jesus Freaks interested?

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Very Little News

No great pictures, no videos, no captivating story to tell. Let's face it, people, my blog rots. Jack does a million camera-worthy things a day, but do I have my camera out, taking the shots? No. It seems that most days there is not enough hours in the day, and no matter how many times a day I straighten up the house, it is always dirty. But, I have to say, that I am very happy. Jack is very happy, too. He is learning something new every day, and this is a great age for him. It makes me turn my thoughts toward having another one........

Anyway, I've been busy with worship team, choir and church, and Jeff has been busy with work, side jobs, and volunteering for various projects at church. Jack has been eating me out of house and home and growing at least a half inch a day. His vocabulary is expanding, and he has even started some simple sentences that are really only intelligible to me since I listen to his chatter every day. He's wearing 24 month old pajamas!

More excitement is coming, though, in the form of a night out with Casting Crowns and Jeremy Camp. I'm sure we'll have pictures of that. AND we are planning our first vacation with Jack! He will take his first plane ride to see Anne and Bryan for their birthdays at the end of August. We are so excited!!!

So, although there is nothing shocking to report, we are content right now with our busy lives, and immensely grateful to our Savior, who has seen fit to give us these peaceful (if not somewhat warm) days. Thank you, Jesus, for loving us.

More to come.....

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Bye, Bye Bampy

Yesterday my mom left to take my grandfather home to Kentucky. We are already missing him. Jack just had such a wonderful time with him, and I know that Bampy really enjoyed him as well. They seemed to have this little unspoken understanding with each other. Jack never disobeyed anything that he said, and even though he loved to steal Bampy's walking cane, he was pretty good about bringing it back when he asked for it. We love you so very much, Bampy! Hurry back!