Thursday, July 28, 2011


It started out as a simple day of school supply shopping. Well, as simple as a day of school supply shopping can be (thank the good Lord for "Aint" Dawnie who was there to help) when you're doing so for three children with the 4th one in tow who doesn't understand why he isn't getting 4 boxes of crayons, 3 bottles of glue, and 52 glue sticks (ok I was exaggerating a bit on the glue sticks). And a 10-pack of dry erase markers? Sorry, my teachers got 4. That's a bit excessive if you ask me. Thank the good Lord for "Aint" Dawnie who was there to help. Did I say that already?

Back to the matter at hand.

We ate lunch and decided we would go visit some puppies. There's something so therapeutic about getting some puppy love. And what were my famous last words as we were headed to see those puppies???

Well of course they were, "NO WAY, never, at least not today - we're just going to look and play."

And with that...
Meet Lucy Belle Norton.

Or as Bethany says, "Lucy Bāāāl," drawn out in her southern best. :)

Apparently I'm even crazier than I thought. Yes. I caved, got caught up in the moment. 110%.

You know how they say sometimes the dog picks you? Well she so did. She's a cutie patootie (a havanese who so far does not shed - at all - which is HUGE). We can't have just any dog because of the boys' allergies, and they are not allergic to her.

She's a sweetheart who loves Sissy very much.
Who leaves sweet little paw prints on the sidewalk after walking in the wet grass.
Who is very affectionate and loves to give kisses and be held.
Who has a bit of spunk only she's so little it doesn't last long. It wears her out although I'm sure that will change.
Her coat is very soft and silky, unlike most dogs' "fur." She is very fluffy and kind of resembles a muppet when she walks. ;) When I said that the boys asked, "What's a muppet?" Sad. Clearly I need to introduce them. What's a childhood without the muppets?
She's been great with the boys and they've been equally as great with her, especially the older two. She's a very social dog which also means she needs a lot of attention. She wants to be with and around someone at all times.
Which is probably why Reid could take her or leave her. HA! That's Turbo for you.

She has gotten used to her collar but so far is not a fan of her leash. She's doing okay with the potty thing but it's a slow process which takes patience and consistency. The consistency thing I can handle.

The patience thing?

Do you know me?

Am I semi-regretting this huge decision? I'll let Mac's body language in this next picture answer that one for you.
That's exactly what I was doing in the wee hours of the morning this morning in the midst of her shrieking whining, asking myself WTH have I gotten myself into. In other words, a lil' bit. BUT I love Lucy, and she's part of our family now. She's a challenge for sure, especially when I have to wake up in the middle of the night to take her out and then realize it should've been a bit sooner. She is a lot of work, work which I really had not intended on taking on right now, but there's no turning back now. I've always wanted my children to grow up with a family pet. I think we finally found her.

Or she found us. Whatever the case may be. :)

Friday, July 22, 2011


I can't quite say Liza Jane is my friend yet, but we're making progress, people. We are making progress. She visited again a couple of nights ago. She came a little closer and stayed a little longer. She's learning my scent I guess. Which won't be hard to learn being that I've worn Pearberry for oh, only the last 20 or so years. It's my scent and unless they quit making it, I probably won't be changing. I've tried to change a few times as there are other lotions I like (I can't wear perfume so it's always just been lotion and body spray), but Chris says they're just not me. He likes my scent. Have I mentioned we're both creatures of habit? Because we are in every sense of the word. Ya think?


Anyway, I was able to get a few more pictures of LJ and have learned she loves blueberries and pears (ding ding ding... that's why she's gonna be my friend... get it? pears... PEARberry). She's gonna love me. I just know it. 
Walking toward me a bit timid
Not quite as timid
I think I'll help myself to some of your peas, thanks!
No, she doesn't just love me for my peas. She's gonna love me for those blueberries and pears we're going to get on our next trip to the grocery store. HA!

Had I not been the one to actually give birth to him I would have a hard time believing Reid actually came from my loin. Not only can he wear tennis shoes with his socks upside down and inside out (which drives my OCD self bonkers just looking at it) but he also will eat any bite of steak Chris gives him, "chewies" and all. Gag. And now this:

Me:  Reid, what would you like for breakfast?

Turbo: Ummmmm, iiiiiii. thiiiiiinnnnk. iiiiiii. wannnnnt... APPLES!! (enthusiastically)

Me:  As in you want me to cut up an apple and that's what you're going to eat?

Turbo: YESSSS ma'am! APPLES!

Of course I had no problem with that. Who would?!? I loves apples too - for a snack - but definitely not for breakfast. Breakfast is my favorite meal but I don't think it's ever included apples. When I was younger I would eat 3 donuts and drink a vanilla carnation instant breakfast with it. And were it not for age and the fact that I just can't eat that kind of stuff anymore, I would probably still be eating it. If anyone offered me apples for breakfast I probably would laugh.
He sat right there at the table looking out at the rain eating his apples.

And then he tried to eat a seed so an apple would grow in his tummy.


This is my declaration that I am officially over summer "vacation." It's been fun but I won't be too sad to see it end (although I'm sure I'll miss it when it's gone, especially in winter). I love and am blessed that I can stay home with my kids and that we can fully enjoy our summers. But we thrive on routine, and it's so very hard for me to keep a routine during the summer. Our new backpacks have come in. We have our school supply lists. We have designated a couple of days next week as "Mommy and Grant day" and "Mommy and Mac day" so they can each have their own special time for school supply shopping. We are anxiously awaiting a call to find out who our teachers will be. So bring it on - school, homework, the schedules, the routine - all of it. We are ready. The countdown has begun... 24 days.

Happy Friday!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Today I was planning on trying to find the time to work on a post about a family get together we had in Selma this past weekend. And I still plan on doing that at some point. 

Just not today.

The boys are still sleeping (yes, it's 8:30 and the Norton boys are still asleep - that's one for the books) so I was checking a couple of blogs I enjoy reading. One of them discussed Pinterest. I've heard of it but don't know much about it other than it's a site you can use to "pin" ideas you find while searching the internet. She did warn that it was a time zapper. I don't Facebook or Twitter and can hardly find time to update this blog so I knew it wouldn't be of interest to me. But I am guilty of having my head in my phone too much - something I woke up feeling guilty about and something I felt led to pray about in the middle of the night (I'm suffering from a little bout of insomnia these days). I scanned to the comment section of that blog and this is the first comment I saw:
I don't think it was a coincidence. Now I'm not doing away with my blog as it is a fun outlet for me as well as a way to document all that we do. And for the most part I don't feel it takes time away from my family. So I will one day post about our fun family reunion. 

Just not today. Today I'm going to enjoy time with these precious gifts: 

Monday, July 18, 2011


Exciting post title, huh? It was that or this:


Now that sounds a bit more exciting.
  • BUELLER FRACTURES HIS FOOT. Mac takes the prize for having the first broken bone of the Norton boys. I hope it's the last although I doubt it will be. It's a small fracture on his left foot (a fracture of the 5th metatarsal to be exact) that he walked around on for a few days. We think he did it when he had a bike wreck while we were camping but there's no way to know for sure. There definitely wasn't any one incident we could pinpoint when he would've done it so we're guessing it had to be the bike wreck. It wasn't even a bad crash, just one of many. A little Neosporin and a band-aid on the knees, some lovin' and he was good to go. Regardless he began complaining of pain on the top of his foot, mainly at night. He played like normal during the day so at first I thought maybe he just bruised it. He's a tough cookie, though, and not one to complain so when he continued saying it hurt I had a feeling he had broken it, especially when I noticed it was swelling. Never underestimate your own intuition. I made an appointment with our pediatrician. He was a little nervous but having Sissy there helped. He kept telling me it wasn't broken. "No way, momma, it's NOT broken." :)
After seeing Dr. Trumbull he sent us for an x-ray.
They confirmed it was a small fracture so we ultimately decided to see an orthopedist. We were able to get an appointment very quickly. We were hoping for the best but preparing for a cast:
He had a whole lot of help in deciding that orange would be his color if a cast was needed.

After meeting with Dr. Curtis I was very thankful we had two options:  He could cast it or we could get fitted for a boot. Is there really any question? The boot for sure! He said to wear it all day for two weeks but he can take it off to swim and sleep. Que the hallelujah chorus. I know there are a lot worse things than having to wear a cast for two weeks but a cast in the summer for a boy who is ALL boy (as well as one who spends a lot of his summer in the water) would just plain suck.
No pity party here. He thinks that thing is the coolest, and his brothers are already fussing over who gets to play "I broke my leg" first when Mac is done with it. It hasn't really even slowed him down that much.
We go back in a couple of weeks to make sure it has done its job. In the meantime he's rocking the boot like a champ, yellow sock and all.
  •  A SNAKE IN THE SKIMMER. The boys were swimming the other day when Grant said, "Momma, WHAT is this?" I walked to the skimmer and saw this:
Well, son, that would be a snake. I'm not a fan of snakes but I don't have a phobia of them either. Plus Chris was working so I had to put my big girl panties on and deal with it. I looked up what kind it was and found out it was a ringneck snake.
A baby one at that. They are harmless so we decided to return him to nature. (Because I'm not ashamed to say that if that sucker had been poisonous he would be dead). It was stuck in the skimmer so I had initially planned on grabbing it by its tail to get it out of the skimmer. I was mentally preparing myself for it and called my dad to make sure he thought that would be ok. SURE he says, just pull it out, put it in the grass and let it go. Easy for YOU to say, Jack. But I had my three little guys watching so I was gonna go for it. You know, had to keep the coolness factor going. I had a stick in my hand to try to get him off the side because I couldn't get to his tail, so when I tried to get him off the side he swam out into the pool. YESSSSSS! Saved! I scooped him up in the net, we took a few pictures, got a good look at him then let him go. And that's about the only size snake I'm ok with finding around here any time soon.
That's Liza Jane. She apparently lost her mother right after she was born and was raised by some people who live close to us until she was able to survive on her own. She stays close and comes to visit now and then. The other day as Chris was leaving he called to tell me a deer was in the yard and to let the boys know so we could see it. He knew it had to be LJ because as he drove past her she didn't move. The boys and I were standing in the front yard watching as she walked toward the house along the edge of the woods. As she got close I called her name. She stopped dead in her tracks and looked at us then immediately started walking toward us. It was the neatest thing. I told the boys to stay back and let her come to us. Only one certain little boy got a bit overly excited the closer she came and tried to go to her. She didn't like that one bit. She ran to the backyard but stopped there. We tried to lure her with some peas from the garden. She came close enough to smell but didn't care for them. She hung around briefly then went on her merry way. I'm determined to be her friend. :)
She hasn't let me pet her yet but will come to me briefly and on her second visit decided she would lay down and take a little rest right beside me. Stay tuned for a "Liza Jane is my friend" post because it's coming. I'm sure of it. ;)
  • MASKED. The other day the boys were bored and decided they wanted to make some masks. I have no idea what prompted it, but I took to the google in search of some templates. There were plenty to choose from. Dawnie was here so we all chose a mask to color, cut out and ultimately don.
I don't know what was so funny about seeing each other with them on, but it was so incredibly hysterical. We all laughed so hard then got to laughing at each other laughing. Laughter like that is good for the soul - not so much for the bladder - but good for the soul for sure!
  • A TRIP TO THE PEACH PARK. Martha (a/k/a Rachel) called me the other day to let me know she and Claire (a/k/a Mags) were meeting mom and dad in Clanton at Peach Park and asked if we wanted to join them. Mary Lou (a/k/a Grace) was at the beach with a friend for the week so she needed to keep Claire busy. And what better way to take up part of a day than a visit to Peach Park for some good food and yummy treats. Dawnie spent the night with us the night before so we all loaded up and headed north - first to get B then to meet everyone at PP. 

Thanks for the pics, Snuggs (although I couldn't post the best one) haha!

It was HOT but fun and relaxing, and as always there were lots of laughs. We missed Mary Lou so I think we need one more PP trip before summer's end.
  • A COUPLE OF NIGHTS WITH NO CHILDREN WHICH LED TO MISSING SAID CHILDREN WHICH LED TO BABY FEVER WHICH TRANSLATED INTO PUPPY FEVER. That really says it all. A couple of weeks ago thanks to my mom, dad and Dawnie, Chris and I had a weekend alone. I'm very thankful for a mom who realizes when I'm in need of a break. Chris and I don't get much alone time. I think because we don't, though, that we make the most of the times we do. We didn't do anything particularly exciting. We ran errands, shopped for a coffee table, did some grocery shopping and had dinner for two. But that's exactly how we like it. I mean, sure, an all-inclusive vacation to some tropical island where the only thing on the agenda is soaking up the sun while sipping fruity drinks sounds like a slice of heaven, but it's not reality. So instead we enjoyed one night at home with the house to ourselves then the next night at the camper... Where we did sip on some fruity drinks. We rode the jet ski and just enjoyed each other's company. We love doing things as a family but every now and then I just want some time with my man. It was perfect.
Perfect at least until we had done everything we talked about doing and had some down time. Down time? What is that? We don't do well with down time. Down time makes us miss the kids. Down time without my children for some reason gives me baby fever. Why?

I don't know. It just does. We all know that isn't a possibility (thankfully) so it automatically turns to puppy fever. I need a puppy about like I need another baby. Or a hole in my head. Or whatever. I DON'T! And while I can sit here now and talk about how silly it would be and sound like a rational person, it's like all voice of reason flees my body when I'm not around the kids.

I have been wanting a Yorkie for a while now. I don't know why I want that particular breed I just do. I've done my research. When we get a dog I want it to be my baby. I want one just to be our pet, just for us to love and care for and spoil. We found a reputable breeder out of Georgia and gave her a call. She had a female in the type and size we want. (It has to be a girl. Umby and I are way outnumbered with wee-wees as it is). She answered every question I asked her, and I felt very comfortable with the breeder. We had worked out logistics and I was literally a PayPal click away from this sweet baby girl:
Isn't she precious! I had the go-ahead from the hubs and everything. He said, "If you want her, get her... But you're getting up in the middle of the night to take her out."


Ok. Maybe she's not so precious after all. Or maybe it's that my sleep is more precious. Maybe all voice of reason hasn't escaped me.

I decided I would sleep on it and am glad I did. Ultimately I made the decision that we're not quite ready to add to our family just yet - because it definitely will be like bringing home a baby. Maybe when the boys are a little older. Mimi brought the boys home after church Sunday and it took them being home about two seconds before I knew I made the right decision. My plate is pretty full these days as it is. I told mom she brought them home just in the nick of time. :)


One day, though. One day.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Where does the time go? Summer is slipping away, and fast. We have about 4 weeks until school starts, and that fact is blowing my mind. Didn't we just finish end-of-the-year parties? e

Last week - or was it the week before last? or maybe the week before that? Ok now that's sad. Anyway, who knows exactly when but sometime here recently a couple of friends of mine along with their kiddos joined us at Wind Creek for a day at the lake. Shea and Paula were two of my very best friends in high school. We don't get to see each other as often as we would like, but when we do it's like we pick up right where we left off. There's a lot to be said for friends like that. I love and cherish them very much. It's always so fun (and funny) catching up, reminiscing, and watching our kids together. At one point they were ALL inside playing in the bunk room so we 3 girls relaxed outside - talking, laughing, and eating the s'mores we didn't want to go to waste. HA! :)

Owen and Cade

Baby Cade - couldn't you just kiss his face off! 
And yes, his sunglasses are on upside down. Reid used to do the same thing so I had to get a picture.
Shea got a group picture too and she commented how Owen wasn't looking. I have about 5 or 6 of these pictures and in NONE of them is he looking. We told them everyone had to eat their lunch first, then we would make s'mores. Owen wasn't worried about some picture. This little sweets-aholic was concerned about one thing and one thing only: Finishing lunch to get to dessert! I totally get it. :)

Thanks, girls, for making the trip. As always it was a ton of fun. I love you both and can't wait to do it again.

Actually, the fun didn't end there. They were enjoying each other so much that when it was time for Shea to leave in time for Davis' t-ball game, Mackenzie declared she wasn't leaving. I insisted she stay, so we had the pleasure of Kenziemack's company for a couple of days. Poor girl, these Norton boys fought over her non-stop. But she can definitely hold her own and hung right in there with them. I told Shea I was not responsible if she came home using words like poop, burp, and fart. HA! :)

We thoroughly enjoyed having her, and the boys are asking when she can come back. 
We had one more night at the camper before we headed home so this is how they slept. Notice Mac is not in the picture. Mack and Mac were fast friends... and Shea was a bit nervous. In her own words, "I don't trust a Norton boy." I kept my word and was sure to separate them at bedtime. Oh, Mac. That boy.

We headed home first thing the next morning, and the kids had a couple of things on their minds:  
Swimming and snow cones!! The weather didn't quite cooperate, so when we couldn't be outside swimming we kept busy with things like play dough.
We had some blue homemade play dough we made a while back with blue raspberry Kool Aid, but it had gotten a bit sticky. That certain recipe doesn't keep very long. The only flavor I had to make more was grape which of course would result in purple play dough. Under any other circumstance the boys would have said NO THANKS! Having Kenziemack there meant purple play dough was totally acceptable. ;)

Being that it had rained off and on and the wind was blowing, the last time they swam they came out of the water with chill bumps and chattering teeth. They thought it would be fun to hop in the tub with their bathing suits on like a hot tub. I think they stayed in there longer than the pool.
The next day was Bethany's first day of cheer camp, but her home pom competition wasn't until that night. Shea was so sweet to invite us to hang out at her house for the day until it was time for the competition. We met for lunch then headed to the Ford casa. Dawnie came with us too so she, Shea and I sat in the living room while the kids terrorized Davis' room played.
If you know Shea at all you know that picture represents what almost caused her to go into cardiac arrest. heehee
But that's ok because these sweet boys were the "tornado" that came through, and it didn't take long to clean up when we all pitched in. Shea's house is beautifully decorated yet still feels so warm and cozy. Everything has a place. She has inspired me to become more organized. Maybe it'll happen. Maybe. One day.

As if having three extra children in her house for the majority of the day weren't enough, Shea let Mackenzie have some friends (twins no less) spend the night. She thought the girls would enjoy watching all the cheerleaders, so they joined us in cheering on Decatur. 
Shea... Many thanks for the hospitality and for coming to watch my baby girl. It was a great day. Well, at least until I got a ticket for running a stop sign after I left the competition but let's not talk about that.

Or let's. I flat didn't see the stop sign, and there just so happened to be a cop sitting right there. Yay me! He informed me - as he's giving me the ticket - that he had no choice but to write a citation since I didn't even slow down. That if I had done more of a "california roll," (hardy har har) he might could've helped me out. Really? Douche bag? HILARIOUS. 

It also wasn't so hilarious that Reid and I came down with a bout of strep throat. Chris knew that I wanted and needed some rest so he took Grant and Mac to the camper for the afternoon and night. Reid and I snuggled our sick little selves in bed. And while I hated we were sick, it made for some sweet love from Turbo.  
After a round of antibiotics, Reid and I were both feeling better. It was a good thing because that Friday we drove back to Auburn to pick Umby up and make sure we stop at every stop sign on campus. Then it was on to the lake to start celebrating the 4th. 
Martha, Mary Lou and Claire visited us for a couple of days at Wind Creek. Somehow I only ended up with a couple of pictures. 
I'm going to have to get better about that. I mean, who doesn't love having their picture taken while eating a hot dog. 

Saturday morning Chris set off in search of a blender and some mixes so we could make some fruity adult beverages. In total Chris fashion, he came back with this:
And any and every mix known to man as well as half the ABC store. ;) Martha being the "Martha" that she is spent the afternoon in and out of the camper trying out various cocktails and concoctions, all of which were too yummy. We even talked Mimi into one (or two). And none of which I can replicate. I've tried.

They headed out Sunday, and Monday B and the boys couldn't wait for "Aint" Dawnie to get there to spend the 4th with us. 
We were lazy during the day, and that night decided to drive closer to Kowaliga to see the fireworks on Lake Martin. Every year the past few years we've watched them from the water on our boat. Not this year... damn tree. So at the last minute we decided we still wanted to see them even if it was from the road. We didn't know if we would get a place to park where we could actually see them well, but we lucked up. We could sit in the back of the car and see them perfectly!
There's something magical about watching the sky light up with fireworks. I love them.
It was really cool too crossing back over the bridge and seeing all the boats. Like B said, all the boats with their lights made it look like a little city on the lake.

Although next year I want to be a part of that little "city." Ok, honey. [hint, hint].

I'm so thankful we were able to celebrate Independence Day the way we did and can't imagine it any other way.

Except maybe with a boat. :)