Friday, March 30, 2007

Off To Frolic In The Bluebonnets

My in-laws are coming home from Vegas for Spring Break and we're off to hang with them this weekend. Their property at Lake Buchanan is usually completely covered with bluebonnets at this time of year, so we're hoping to get some good pics, if the weather cooperates, and we'll share them with you when we get back. I hope you all have a chance to enjoy Spring this weekend as well.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Comida Muito Bom

Austin just opened it's first Brazilian Churrascaria, so we decided to give it a try tonight in honor of/preparation for Jeff's Portuguese class at UT, which starts next week. It was awesome! The best one we've ever been to, in my opinion...and we've been to one in Dallas and many in Brazil. (O.k. so all the ones in Brazil win for location, but the food at this one was really excellent). Jeff has already declared that we will definitely be going there again on his birthday (and possibly his half-birthday). No surprise, he's a big fan of all-you-can-eat high-quality meat!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

That Time Of Year Again

For those of you who keep up with our goings-on through this blog, you know that things don't stay the same for very long inside the Watts house. I like to change things around...a lot! So, maybe two or three (or four or five) times a year, I re-arrange most of the furniture in one room or another, or sometimes several rooms. I never really plan for this to happen. I'll just be sitting in a room one day and think, "I wonder what it would be like if I just moved a few things around..." And the next thing you know everything is moved around. And usually while Jeff is at work, so that he comes home and isn't quite sure he's home.

Well, it happened again today--and also one day last week. And the two rooms targeted were our breakfast room and our living room. The idea was to create more space, or the illusion of more space, and I think we've succeeded. We're still testing it all out, trying to decide for sure if we're going to keep the new look. But, I think I like it. We'd love for you all to come visit us and tell us what you think. We welcome your opinion. Jeff's one suggestion for what could make the living room even better was a 92" TV screen and projector, so really there's no idea too crazy to share.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Lessons From Ruth And Mephibosheth

It's kind of been a week around here, what with being sick and some other little stressers. And by the end of today, I just felt kind of beat. And then, we knelt to pray with the kids before bed, and Ruth's prayer was simple: "Thank you, Lord, for providing everything we needed for today." And I was reminded of our Bible time this morning (which, honestly, I hadn't given another thought to after we said "amen" with the last prayer). We read a story about King David and his quest to find someone in the line of Saul that he might show favor to*. And if you know the story of Saul and David, you know they didn't have the closest of relationships. By all rights, David should have wanted to kill everyone in the line of Saul, but instead he just wanted to find even one that he could show kindness to. And he finally found Saul's grandson, Miphibosheth. This young man was lame in his feet and had been since he was a child. He had no way of making a living and was carried from place to place only when it was convenient for someone else to carry him. He had nothing. But, King David took him in to his own home and made him like one of his own children. And David made him a promise: "...You will always eat at my table." Ruth kept interrupting the story this morning and saying, "but when does Miphibosheth get healed," for she knows that that often does happen. And the answer was, "he doesn't get healed, but everything he could ever need has been provided for meal at a time." And this is just how the Lord is with us when we accept the sacrifice of His Son. We deserve death, and He gives us life. We have nothing, and He gives us everything. And the fact of the matter is, sometimes our lives aren't perfect. Sometimes everything isn't "healed" just because we take up residence in the King's house. But we no longer have to live in fear. We no longer have to worry about what the future holds. His grace is sufficient for this moment.

Thank you, Lord, for providing everything we needed for today!

*The story of David and Mephibosheth can be found in 2 Samuel 9

Monday, March 26, 2007

Back Among The Living

We all survived our bouts with the tummy bug, but that's not to say we didn't wake up in what looked like a war-zone. I have no idea how being in flux between flat on my back and locked in a bathroom for just less than 24-hours could have inspired such a grandiose mess, but let me tell you, it did. The living room was literally an unnavigable maze of toys, books, blankets, shoes, just-in-case trash cans, magazines, piles of dried Play-Doh, pillows, Pepto bottles, remote controls, half-eaten bowls of soup and not-quite-finished glasses of Gingerale. And that was just the living room! So, Ruth and I dove in this afternoon--with a little help from Weston, who has discovered how fun it can be to pick something up off the floor and put it in the bucket. (Of course, he still thinks it's pretty fun to take something out of the bucket and put it on the the floor)! We got the house back into a livable condition and now I truly feel like I'm back among the living. The next time I decide to take a day off, I think I'll try somewhere other than Couchtown or Sickville, or at least try to bring along a maid!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Well, That Just Makes Me Sick

Truly wish I knew what "that" was. Friday morning we awoke at 6:30 to the sound of Ruth being sick in the bathroom. At 9:00, I heard Weston making some noise in the monitor, and went upstairs to get him. I could smell him way before I could see him, and I knew we had a problem. The kids went on to have a very happy, healthy day and haven't had any more trouble since. Seemed to be some kind of food poisoning. Then after we went to bed last night, I slept for about an hour and then spent most of the rest of the night and pretty much all of today in the bathroom. And this afternoon, Jeff decided he'd like to get in on the fun, too. The adult thing doesn't really seem to be related to the kid thing, but it does appear to be some other form of food poisoning. I just can't tell you how much fun we've been having today! And the poor kids have kind of been on their own. And believe me, the house looks it. But we're hopeful that we will all be over this by tomorrow and things will get back to normal around here.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Fun At The Fair

Weston enjoys the petting zoo

Face-to-face with Bambi
Stylin' Cowgirls
"I don't want to leave until I get roped."
Hangin' with Borden's golen girl, Elsie

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Oh Baby

Every so often Ruth brings up the topic of babies--how they are made and how they are born--usually when she's hitting me up for a little sister. (This is how she usually brings up the conversation: Weston is a really nice little brother, but don't you think it would be fun if we had a little sister)?! She knows the basics (on a four-year-old level--"It just takes a little seed from the dad and a little seed from the mom, and {pause for effect} you get a baby." This said with spectacular hand motions and wonderful inflections.) and she always presents these facts to me in a way that says, "This isn't such a difficult thing. Why don't you get right on it?" I can't seem to get her to understand, that while I may be able to make the decision to have a baby, I don't have any control whatsoever over whether we get a boy or a girl. The funniest part of our conversation this morning was her question about how the baby gets out--"Mom, could you explain to me how the baby gets out. I don't think it would be strong enough to push out of the mom's belly, and anyway, that would just break the mom's belly and that wouldn't be good." I attempted to explain the birth canal and my mistake was comparing it to a tunnel. Her eyes lit up and she asked, "Is that a tunnel the baby can play in while it is in the mommy's tummy?" (I'm sure she was picturing some of our favorite playgrounds).

Anyway, we had this conversation during breakfast, and after we were done, she and Weston went off to play. In a few minutes Ruth came back into the kitchen, with Weston on her heels and her never-ending stream of make-believe dialog going on, and she announced to me that Weston was her baby. Then she just got completely cracked up, as she realized a discrepancy in her pretending, and said, "Well, he can't be my baby because I'm only 13...But someone gave him to me so I have to take care of him." At least I have her thinking that she shouldn't have a baby when she's 13!

I laughed myself to tears!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Did You Miss Me?

Well, three out of four Watts are back home, safe and sound. The kids and I had a great time visiting my parents. We shopped, ate out, played with the kitty, wrestled, read books, played dress-up and generally, had a ball. I'm expecting Jeff just any time, and then we will be complete here in our happy little home. And then we will rest. We are all tired after our adventures...and a bit disoriented. I keep thinking today is Saturday or Sunday.

Monday, March 19, 2007

He Left, But He Stocked The Fridge First

Jeff was bit by the cooking bug this weekend and he went crazy. He cooked all day on Saturday and all day on Sunday. He stocked our freezer and our refrigerator with yummy, yummy stuff. He even made his own ravioli--and I'm talking he made the pasta! It was awesome! And what's even better is that it means I don't have to cook for quite a while! Yippee!

So, he cooked up a storm and then he took off for North Carolina this morning on a business trip. He'll be back Wednesday night, and in the meantime the kids and I will be visiting my parents for the next couple of days. So, I'll catch up with all of you later this week.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

And You Thought He Was Only Interested In Sleeping

Napping isn't the only thing that gets Weston excited. He also really likes to eat. And lately when he's hungry, he'll go over to the fridge, get up on his tiptoes and pull with all his might trying to get the door open, and trying to clue me in to the fact that he would like a bite to eat. It's a really cute ritual. As of yet, he hasn't actually succeeded in getting it open, but once he does, look out grocery bill!

Friday, March 16, 2007

You Do Funny Things When You're Sleepy

We went over to have dinner with my parents tonight, keeping us up long past both kids bedtimes. So, on the way home, Ruth was shooting us questions in rapid-fire succession trying to stay awake. Then, suddenly, she crashed. When we got home, she woke up just enough to get her shoes on, or so I thought. When I leaned in the door to see what was taking so long, I found her diligently trying to put a book on her foot. Very funny stuff!

And speaking of sleepy, Rip Van Weston entertained all of us tonight when my aunt put a blanket down on the floor and he beat a path over to it, trying to snuggle in for bed. I caught him as he was trying to get his position just right.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Dropping The Morning Nap

Well, it seems like Weston is trying to drop his morning nap, and frankly, I have mixed emotions about this. I really enjoy that time during the morning because I am able to get a lot done around the house. But, on the other hand, it will be nice to have a bigger window during the day to get errands done, and to get out of the house. I'm guessing that for now, he'll probably take the morning nap sometimes and not take it other times. He's still a sleepy little guy, though, and he loves to be all snuggled up. He got his hands on my jacket earlier and wrapped himself up in it and then started making his way to the stairs. So cute!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

I Tried, Really I Did

I had planned to post some adorable pictures of Weston attempting to feed himself with a spoon tonight, but I have been fighting with Blogger about it for over an hour, and it looks like I will not be the victor tonight. We just aren't seeing eye-to-eye, and I haven't got the strength to fight any more. Maybe next time I will come out on top.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Life's Little Mysteries

A mystery by it's very nature and definition is mysterious. But some mysteries you kind of expect and accept: How many stars are there, really? What are the Marfa Lights? And what exactly is in a hot dog? No one really knows the answers to these things, though therories may abound. And that's o.k. We just accept that we don't know and move on. But some mysteries just kind of buzz around your head like a little gnat that you can't see, but you know it is there and it won't go away. Just such a mystery occured at the Watts house today. The kids and I left the house after lunch to run a couple of errands. We were probably gone an hour and a half. When we disembarked in the driveway upon our return, I noticed dirt spread all over the sidwalk. My immediate thought was that our resident rogue armadillo had really gotten out of control, uncharacteristicly in the middle of the day. But upon further inspection I noticed that there was definitely a method to the madness. A section of our front yard had been edged and mowed. I fired our last two lawn guys and haven't replaced them for this season yet, so I called Jeff to see if he had hired someone without telling me. He didn't know anything about it. Only a very small portion of the yard had been touched, and there wasn't a note or any indication of who had done the work. Mystery deluxe, is it not?!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Before The Rain

This weekend Jeff won a "Daddy Award" by putting up the monkey bars and the glider swing on the playscape out in the backyard. Ruth was thrilled; and while Jeff didn't necessarily enjoy the project, he did enjoy the smiles it inspired. He's such a good Daddy! And just as we got the last of the tools put away this afternoon, the rain began. So, with the windows up and the rain coming down, we were able to enjoy some high quality naps this afternoon. It's been a good weekend.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

You Know You've Had Enough When...

When I was in college I often took advantage of Double Dave's "Two For Tuesday" deal. (O.k. so, I took advantage of it pretty much every single Tuesday). And then one Tuesday, I realized that I might be stopping in a little too frequently, when I walked in to pick up my order and the girl behind the counter said, "Mandi, right?" Well, tonight I had a bit of a deja vu experience. I ordered a pizza from Mangia for our hero babysitters, the Oberprillers, and then later decided to order one for us, and the lady said--before I even said a word--"Did you already order a pizza from us today?!" So what if I did?!! So. What. If. I. Did?!

Friday, March 09, 2007

Joining The Race

The human race, that is. That's right, the Watts have finally come away from Planet Antenna and joined the rest of the world in being able to view more than just 5 channels on our TV. We had Dish Network installed at our house today and the channel surfing has begun in earnest. (Now, granted, we signed up for the smallest possible package, but 40 is still more than five, so it's a thrill for us). Talk about a hot Friday night.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Dinner and Makeover

Tonight my friend, Angela, and I participated in a Mary Kay dinner and makeover party. Makeup really isn't my thing so much, but it was fun to go out and do something for me. I felt like I was a little girl playing dress up. And now I'm ready to wash it off and go back to being normal.

15-Month Check-Up

Well, we finally got everything worked out with the new insurance and were able to get Weston in to the new pediatrician today for his 15-month check-up. We like the new doctor just fine, but are still a bit sad to leave our other doctor. Dr. Little says Weston looks great and is doing all the things he's supposed to do at this age. She was most impressed with the way he wasn't bothered in the least by strangers. She admired his independence and liked the way he wanted to explore his surroundings. She also got a kick out of his toddler shiner, which he got when he fell while trying to walk over a pile of shoes and sleeping bags at the sleepover. Weston got two shots, and while he wasn't quite as tough as last time, the crying only lasted a moment. Weston is now 32 in. tall and weighs 25 lbs, which is a pretty good arm workout for Mom, I'll tell you. We are so proud of our big guy and the way he's growing and developing.

How Do You Like The New Look?

Inspiration struck last night while I was looking at Katie's blog, and I decided to play around with my blog and see what happened. This is it. I think it's a good change, but what do you think?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


Ruth has dozens of friends, some of which she has had since she was 6 months old. And some of which are spending the night here tonight, as she has her first official sleepover. Weston, however, is just starting to get into the friend game, as it's difficult to make friends when you're napping. It's fun to see him starting to interact with people his size and with his same skill set. We met a little boy his age at the library today, and they really enjoyed each other. Then, this afternoon, we had a playdate with a new neighbor who has a little girl just a little younger than Weston, and they played really well together, too. Friends are fun, and we are so thankful for all our friends, both old and new!

Monday, March 05, 2007

Spring Has Sprung

I officially declared it Spring at the Watts house today, and to celebrate I brought all my exiled plants back out into the sunlight. Some of them were quite content in the garage and are already blooming. This makes me happy, happy, happy! No "blowing snow advisories" here, thank you very much! It's Spring and it's beautiful and I'm happy!

Sunday, March 04, 2007


I had my first opportuntiy to visit the IKEA store today. Wow. I don't think I've ever been in a larger store with cooler stuff at such reasonable prices! And when I say large, belive me when I say you could easily, easily get lost in there. In fact, if the store weren't so well marked, we never would have made it out. But we did make it out, and with some treasures. I got a really cool shelf for the utility room, a plastic bag storage unit and a couple of suction cup scrubbing brushes for the kitchen. And I have plans to go back soon for a few other things. If you haven't been there before, one of the neat things they have are rooms set up completely as if someone was living in them (without the clothes on the floor or the dishes in the sink), and Ruth went absolutely nuts over this. She went in every single room and prentended to live there ever so briefly. She opened every drawer of every dresser and cooked a meal in every kitchen. It was like a life-size doll house for her, and she just loved it. The next time we go back, though, it will definitely be in the middle of the day, in the middle of the week when, hopefully, it won't be so crowded.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Inflatable Wonderland

We had our first visit to Inflatable Wonderland today for a birthday party, and we had a great time. I think Weston thought the cushy trampolines were giant beds, and therefore he couldn't have been happier. I got a couple of great pictures of him, but Ruth wasn't still long enough for me to capture her. I'm guessing this will be a place we visit again.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Why Not?!

So, tonight Ruth was talking about taking care of different farm animals. She was saying that if we had such animals, I could milk the cow and she could water the horse. This led to a hilarious what-if game in which you just substitute the beverage (or liquid) and farm animal of your choice. For instance: How about punch a pig? Or brew the ewe? Or cream the chicken? Hilarious, see?! Why don't you try it for yourselves and see just how funny it is.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Getting COZI

I discovered a wonderful little tool today that, I think, is going to revolutionize our whole household. It's called COZI Central and it's a calendar/shopping list/photo collage program. And best of all, it's free. If you want to get COZI too, visit their website: