Friday, October 29, 2010


My boys are tough. I mean they're ALL boy. Rough and tough. The dirtier the better.

Playing in the dirt? Of course!

Riding four wheelers? Oh yeah!

Running over baby snakes with a bicycle then bringing it to momma in their hand? YES, even that.

But putting both bare feet in a truck to drive with water in the floorboard? HECK NO! That's where Turbo draws the line!




Thursday, October 28, 2010


Grant's best friend in his class this year is Seth. Seth is also the principal's son. If this were Mac or Reid we were talking about I'd be certain there were ulterior motives behind befriending the principal's son. But it's not. It's Grant, and he and Seth have become big buddies. Obviously since they're friends they do share some similar interests. If they had everything in common, though, it would be boring. One thing about Seth is that he's very outgoing and is a hugger. Every time I go in their classroom Seth can't 's get out of his chair fast enough to run to me saying, "Hey, Mrs. Norton!!" and gives me a great big hug. On the flip side, Grant is shy, reserved, and is NOT much of a hugger. He's just not very affectionate. Not with us and surely not with friends. And that's ok because that's his personality.

See what I mean?? Check out their body language in this picture. It's very telling. :)

That's ok, Professor. Hugger or not you're still one of the kindest, most thoughtful people on the planet!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


We're not liked very much by Millbrook. And we probably won't be allowed to come back. You see, Wetumpka doesn't have a Fall Ball league. So you may remember my saying that what usually happens is someone will get a team together from Wetumpka and go to Millbrook to play. It's the norm. Chris teamed up with a guy who knew a guy who knew a couple of guys who were interested in fall baseball for their sons too, so we managed to pull together a Wetumpka team. Our intentions when we put the team together were strictly to play baseball. Obviously winning is fun and being that our team won very few in the Spring, we hoped to walk away with some wins. But we surely didn't have a "Let's go over to Millbrook and kick butt" disposition. In fact, we had very few practices. This is my first experience with fall ball; however, from what I have learned fall ball is supposed to be a lot more laid-back than the Spring - it's for those who love baseball, and it allows the boys time to gain some good experience/practice. 

Go back a sentence or two and re-read "But we surely didn't have a 'Let's go over to Millbrook and kick butt' disposition." The key word in that sentence is DIDN'T. As in, in the beginning - past tense. That was before a team from Millbrook decided they would try to pull a fast one on us (i.e., THEY CHEATED) when they were tired of us BEATING THE SNOT OUT OF THEM. 

There's a reason this league is nicknamed "daddy ball." 

In this age-group Millbrook plays with a rubber ball. Wetumpka does not. Millbrook also sets the pitching machine to a slower pitch for this age. Our boys are accustomed to and we practice with a faster pitch. Those were two major adjustments that had to be made on our boys' part the very first game. And while it took us an inning, we adjusted. 

There are only four teams in this age-group, so the schedule is such that we play each team three times. Fast forward to mid-way into the season.  The coaches didn't feel the need to continue arriving an hour before the game for practice, so we arrived in Millbrook at our field a few minutes before the game. We were up to bat first. As our coach is walking up to the pitching machine, the other team tells us that in their league, halfway through the season the pitching machine is sped up. The guy who is in charge of the league's son is on that team so we thought it was legit. We also thought is was underhanded that they had been practicing on a faster pitch and didn't tell us before the night of so that we could polish up on a faster pitch (which is actually Wetumpka's original speed), but we went with it. They almost won. But we came from behind in the last inning with two outs and won the game. It wasn't until our next game when we realized the whole "we speed up the machine halfway through the season" was a total lie. A L-I-E. 

Daddy ball.

We took the high road and let it go. Cheaters never prosper. We won. Who cares. 

Naturally the second time we played this team, they were out for blood. Blood I tell you. They wanted to put a hurting on us. They almost did. They are a very good team who gave us a run for our money. Of course, I'm sure it helped them a bit when the coach who stands behind the batter said "swing" under his breath to each batter WITH EVERY SINGLE PITCH. 

We let that go as well. We're there to have fun, remember!?!

And it was fun. Especially when we came from behind in the last inning with two outs to win it in that game too. 

Last night was the third and final time to play that team. Chris is the third base coach. Most games when we were ahead, he would be very gracious to the other teams in that he would hold our runners on third when he really could've sent them on to score another run. I say most games because last night was not one of those nights. It was on. Wetumpka came to play.

Games are supposed to be an hour and fifteen minutes. In the past if we had played a couple of innings and it had already been over an hour, the game would be called. So last night when, after two innings and an hour and five minutes, we thought the game was over. We were ahead 7-2. 

But no. That wasn't good enough for the other team. They HAD to play one more inning. I have to admit we were all a bit nervous. They were hitting good. Better than we were in fact, up until that point. It's just we were doing an awesome job fielding the ball. 

In the words of my Uncle Kenneth, not to worry. We turned up the heat. Our guys hit the best they had the entire night. Grant did a great job as usual! Mac struck out his first and second time at bat but redeemed himself his final time with his first home run!!! He weighs 37 lbs. and is knee-high to a grasshopper so it was an inside-the-park HR, but a HOME RUN nonetheless. YAY MACKEY!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

The final score was 17-2.

Victory. Sweet, sweet victory. Oh the excitement of little league baseball! 

We have one game left and fall baseball will officially come to a close. It's been a ton of fun. We've had some great times and made some good friends. I look forward to many, many more baseball games in our future.

Team Wetumpka:

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Chris has discovered we have some wild hogs on our hunting land. They scare the deer away. They're a nuisance. Apparently they multiply rather quickly, and the problem can easily get out of hand. Not only that but they're big, fast (yes fast, lightning fast), mean and very aggressive. They're dangerous. So Chris has been on a mission to get rid of as many as he possibly can. He and a friend set up a trap which means he's been making frequent trips to the hunting land to check it. And since bow season is in, while he's there he'll get in the stand and sit until dark. It's over an hour drive there which seems to be a deterrent for the boys wanting to go with him. The other day all 3 boys opted to stay with me as opposed to going with Chris. Boy did they regret that decision when Chris texted me a picture of a hog he had caught in the trap. He said he started to call and tell me to load the boys up and head his way so they could see it, but after it charged him from inside the trap three times bending the cage, he decided he better go ahead and take care of the problem. He took a video of it in the trap and I wish I could post it. Except Chris throws out quite a few choice words when it charges the cage. He was alone so he was either talking to himself or the hog. Both of which make it quite hilarious because it takes a lot to ruffle Chris' feathers. But that wild boar managed to do just that.

Sunday after church Grant went home with a friend for the afternoon but you better believe there were two other little boys who were on board with daddy when he asked if they wanted to go check the trap again. And the trip did not disappoint. The hog wasn't in the trap but came in the field as they were getting out of the stand. SCORE!

If you're grossed out by this type of thing, sorry. You may want to pass on the picture below. We are hunters so we enjoy stuff like this. If you don't hunt, you wouldn't understand.

All was fine and good until they made their way to the hog and they realized just how bad a wild boar smells. Chris said it's disgusting. I'll take his word for it. I can handle blood and gore all day but you add a putrid odor to the mix and I'm done. I believe there are two little boys who take after me in that department. Chris sent me this picture and I could not stop laughing.
Mac clearly is about to vomit (he naturally has a weak stomach anyway).

When they got home they both ran in yelling, "WE KILLED A HOG. WE KILLED A HOG."

Mac said, "Yeah, and it smelled SO bad."

Well Mac, what did it smell like?

"It smelled like a fat lady's purse."

Wha? Huh? Where did you...? What exactly does...?


Monday, October 25, 2010


Grant brought home his first report card of 1st Grade last week, and he was all smiles wearing his 
A Honor Roll ribbon. 

It is amazing how much he has learned already and continues to learn on a daily basis. We're blessed with an exceptional school and great teachers. We're so proud of you, Grant! Keep it up! 

I usually am not a fan of school pictures, but I love this one. It shows his natural, sweet smile. And of course I think he's absolutely handsome!

Bethany also had a great report card - the first of high school. She is taking IB classes this year. And while they're challenging, she always meets a challenge head on. She is an extraordinary student, always has been. She works hard and takes her grades seriously. She's a great role model for her siblings. We're all so proud of you, sweet girl!

The countdown has begun (actually the countdown began at 365 and counting last November 20), but B can officially say that in LESS THAN A MONTH she will be 15. And driving. Oh my.
I kid but the reality is the statistics on distracted driver related accidents and fatalities (specifically texting while driving) are staggering. I've been preaching and preaching to Bethany about the dangers of it, yet I continued to be guilty of doing it myself. Then I really started to take note of other people on the road who were busy on their phones while behind the wheel. Have you ever been in morning traffic and seen some idiot with a Suburban full of kids swerve in your lane? Then you pass her and realize she has a phone in plain view in one hand while she's holding on to the steering wheel with the other, and her head is back and forth between the phone and the road. Or how about driving up the interstate, seeing a car continually swerving back and forth between lanes swearing they must be drunk only to get beside them and see that they're really texting. Not only that but when I would think "Oh, I'll just send a quick text. No big deal," I started to be aware of the "what-ifs." "What if that had happened just then" or "WOW, if that car had stopped suddenly I would have been all in the back of it." And surely I can't forget the e-mails I have been forwarded of children who have been either seriously injured or killed because of someone driving while "intexticated." 

It's just dangerous all the way around. Period. So Bethany and I made a pledge to each other that from here on out we will not text while driving. If you are one of those who do it, I urge you to take the pledge with us. What text could possibly be so important that it couldn't wait until you can pull over and stop? that you would endanger your own life and/or the lives of others?

I'm off my soapbox now.


The other night while saying prayers, the boys were saying what they were thankful to Jesus for. Grant said, "I'm thankful for momma and daddy."

Aww, so sweet, Grant! And we're so thankful for you too!

Mac said, "Jesus and God, RaRa, Mary Carter, Sissy and Madeline."

Very nice, Mackey! I'll forgive you this time for not mentioning your momma.

Then we make our way to Turbo who says, "Ummm, I'm thankful for my blankie."

Yes, Reid. I'm sure you are. And when it's all that will appease you, I'm ever so thankful for it too!

Saturday, October 23, 2010


Maybe this is a sign I should take a break from blogging for a while. Because I was ticked the first time it deleted a post. But this one, well I have been working on this one for a few days, trying to get it all done so I would have the memories of all that had happened over the span of about five days last week. I broke it down into each day and had finished all but basically proofing it to post. I knew I would probably have a smidgen of time this morning to finish and post it. And I did. A teensy weensy bit of time which would have sufficed. Only nothing I've worked on is saved. Nothing. And I can't tell you how many times I click "save now" while working on a post just so that doesn't happen. I just don't have it in me to start from scratch. The window of opportunity I had to finish what I needed has closed. Reid is demanding my attention. Mac is hungry. So I'm going to post pictures from each day, put a few captions but for the most part allow the pictures to speak for themselves. 
We had a wonderful, wonderful, wonderful trip to Decatur. The weather was beautiful. There was a playdate at the park with Tara and the girls followed by yummy strawberry cupcakes (thanks, Smitty!). We rounded out the day with seeing Sissy in Decatur High's homecoming parade. (Tara has some cute pictures in her post as well). We've been wanting to get the kids together for quite some time, and I think you can tell by these pictures they thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

I love this one. Cate isn't hearing of not being in on the action - front and center:

In this one I can't quite tell if both boys are keeping watch over Wownsy or if Grant's blocking Mac:

BUT... What Mac wants. Mac goes after. And usually gets. 


Anxiously awaiting Sissy's debut in the parade: 

YAY SISSY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

B with a few of her girls:

Bailey, to Bethany's right, said she thinks B looks like me. We haven't heard that much until now. But B's eyes have changed a bit, and we're hearing it more and more. And I like it. :) 

I've already posted a couple of pictures from B's first experience with Auburn Football, but I had a couple more I wanted to add. Thanks a ton, RaRa! She had a blast, and I do think you've changed her forever. heehee

While they were whooping it up on The Plains, we had the pleasure of spending the day with Claire (or Mags as everyone else calls her). She told me more than once, "AA, you're CRAZY." Yes sweetie, AA is. But that's why you love me so much. She hung right in there with the boys all day and even snuck the camera away for a few snapshots of her own:

GaGa, we missed you sweet girl. But I know you had a great day with Mimi, Granddaddy and "Aint" Dawnie!
Although Mackey's birthday was on the 10th, we still had not celebrated it with RaRa and the girls and Mimi and Granddaddy. (Unfortunately Granddaddy couldn't be there - we missed you, Dad!) Mac's choice for such celebration?  Chuck E. Cheese. Because duh, a kid can be a kid. Rachel and B were a bit zombie-like after their full day at AU, but we always enjoy each other's company.

See? Zombie. But notice the shirt! :)

It was short, sweet, to the point, and we were all home by lunch. Perfection.

When we got home, Chris had a new game waiting on us. It's EyePet for PlayStation Move. (PS Move is basically Wii for the PlayStation - same concept/different types of games). It's a great game, and they have all enjoyed caring for their virtual pets, especially B:

It was a gorgeous day so we couldn't spend it all indoors. We took things outside so the boys could enjoy riding their new bikes. Reid can't quite get the hang of pedaling his bike. He keeps wanting to go backwards. Hello brakes. So for now this is how Reid "rides" his bike:

I surely don't recall having to teach the other 3 how to ride WITH training wheels. How does one do that anyway? After I exhausted all efforts Mac stepped in to offer his assistance:

No such luck. But it did make for a cute picture. 

I thought for sure Reid's I-say-I'm-riding-my-bike-while-I'm-really-pushing-it technique would be safe. HA! This is Turbo we're talking about. He somehow still managed to flip over the handlebars. 

I have no idea.

That wasn't the only injury of the day. B decided she would take Grant's trick bike for a spin. 

This is the part of the story where I'd like to say she was attempting some sort of trick or something. But she wasn't. She was just riding it. And rode it into the rocks. Where she fell. On the rocks. And those rocks basically chewed up the bottom part of the palm of her hand. 
She was tough though because it was nasty. Nasty. I took a picture of it without the bandage because I'm weird like that, but I'll spare you. At least she has a good story to tell. And some extra TLC to boot.

Yet and still that wasn't the only injury. While I was inside doctoring Umby's hand I sat my camera on the chair I had been sitting in. I was sitting on a towel so I sat the camera on the towel. The dog likes to chew towels. Said dog didn't care my camera was sitting on the towel he wanted to chew so when he pulled the towel off the chair, my camera hit the ground. It still takes pictures but the flash isn't working. I'm hoping that's all it is and can be easily fixed. And Chuy better be glad he walked away without injury. 

Monday morning I let B sleep in while I took Grant to school then Mac and Reid to their school. Not long after I returned my baby girl arose from her beauty sleep. We spent the morning enjoying a quiet house and catching up on our DVR'd shows. We make each other laugh. A lot. And it's things only we would find funny. Like a facial expression or comment Giuliana Rancic will make on an episode of one of our favorite reality shows, Giuliana and Bill, which we will rewind no less than 10 times just to continue laughing. It was a wonderful morning with my sweet love which went by way too fast. Soon it was time to pick up the boys. Monday evening was time for one of Grant and Mac's baseball games. They both did great, and they were super-excited to have Sissy there cheering them on. 

Tuesday was Grant's class field trip to the Alabama Shakespeare Festival for a production of Winnie the Pooh: The House at Pooh Corner. Grant's been counting down the days. He's been so excited about this field trip. Imagine his excitement when he realized Sissy could come along with us. That's the best of both worlds, right!?! And while I had hopes of some pictures of the two of them outside on the beautiful grounds at ASF, those hopes were squashed when B was bitten by 3 ants on one foot in a total of about 2 minutes. If you know B, you know she was done. :) So Whataburger decor had to do:

Whew. Done. Publish Post. Happy Weekend. War Eagle. All that good stuff.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


The other day I ventured to the grocery store with the boys. Brave, I know! On our way in we passed a man who stopped to take a look at me and the 3 boys. He said, "Raise those boys right - take good care of them, and one day they'll take care of you."

Chris always likes to mess with me to get a reaction from the boys. And a reaction he definitely gets because they don't like it when he messes with their momma. They don't even like it when he kisses me so when he acts like he's really messing with me, they'll try to open up a can of... well, you know. At least as much as a 3, 5 and 6-year-old can open up a can of that. :)

Chris likes to have his toes popped. Eww. I hate this. And I hate having my toes popped. So of course one of the ways he jokes is that he's going to do it to me. I was sitting on the couch with Mac and Reid the other day and Chris walked over, grabbed my foot and acted like he was going to pop my toes. Naturally I start trying to get away (although I know he really isn't going to do it), and Mac comes to my rescue. Mac says, "Daddy, I'm gonna beat you up if you do that to mommy again."

I said, "That's right, Mackey. You always protect your mommy!"

Chris said, "Mac, are you momma's protector?"

Mac looked at Chris and said, "I'll protect her to the end."

Mush. That's what my heart turned to.

So much to blog about. So little time. I've been enjoying some extra time with my baby girl so blogging has been the last thing on my mind. I'm hoping to make time before the week  is out, though! Don't want to start forgetting little details, and that's sure to happen if I wait too long. Happy Hump Day!

Saturday, October 16, 2010


That's where these two headed out bright and early this morning.

It's Bethany's first experience and boy is she in for a treat with her RaRa!!! And doesn't she look fabulous!
Let's just hope they can pull out a win. War Eagle!

I've been getting regular updates from those two and had to post a few pictures they've sent. I do think they are thoroughly enjoying themselves. In Bethany's words she, "LOVES Auburn and never wants to leave." :)