Thursday, December 17, 2009

Dear New England,

I miss you. I miss our family of friends. I miss you a lot. I miss you every season. You were good to us. Will you please adopt me and bring me home? Maybe I could bring along my family?

Don't get me wrong, the South is being pretty good to us. The people are nice and the weather is too...to a fault. The fact that the Wal-Mart has sold out of butter flavored Crisco is a little frightening, but I'm sure there's a lot of love being fried up for Christmas.

I could use some snow. Maybe even a Nor'easter. I remember how much I loved those BIG storms. But, by about February, the cabin fever got so awful we would begin to look for ANY sign of melting. This usually comes in the form of mud. Mud was much like a groundhog; beckoning a new season. I have mud, on my grass, from a pipe leak. But, it's just not the same.

Just let it be known...I want to be yours and I think I always will be.

m

Saturday, December 5, 2009

All in a days work.

It seems like Reily and I have to run an errand...somewhere...every day.

Yesterday, she said to me, "Today, we're gonna kiss. We're gonna hug. And, we're gonna go shopping."

Check. Check. Check.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

This is 7!

This is 7.


I'm sad to see 6 go.
It's just one year closer to...BIG!
We wanted to bottle her up at 3.
Now, here she is 7?! How did that happen.

For Macy, 7 is:
  • a pink guitar
  • a Krispy Kreme cake
  • getting her ears pierced

video

A great day for a great girl!!

Love you, Macy!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Magic Begins...


Macy is in a hurry to get some Christmas going. She already has her Christmas tree up and running. Love her.

So, it should come as NO surprise that she has already written the big guy.

So, I was sitting here...not doing anything important...and I heard a thumpy sound outside. It was quick and then there was a swooosh behind the couch. I found this....

Isn't it amazing?!

A message in a bottle from the North Pole!!

It HAS to be her response from Santa.

I can't wait for her to open it in the morning!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

FYI

I still hate the Yankees.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Yes Indeedy Halloweeny

(Link, Beauty Queen, Rock Star, Fortune Teller)


Oh, Halloween

You are an awful day. A long walk, sore feet, and a L-O-A-D of chocolatey, high fructose corn syrupy love. You... (insert: fist wave)

Love
Hate
Love
Hate


and then, Mrs. Incredible shows up?!
What's that? Who's she? Where's she putting her candy bars? You know what Mrs. Incredible? You can take your red tights, and your sassy boots and your perfectly obedient family that doesn't short cut across every lawn, and you can...whatever.

I will cover up with a cloak. mysterious. concealing. Where do I put my chocolate bars?

Nobody will know. Until November 1, 2, 3...and every day after that.
I (we) have enjoyed a good fraction of the loot our lot got.



Seriously excessive.


We had to dump our pumpkins periodically. They were too heavy.


This is the wagon with part of the cargo.


This is our living room with ALL of the goods. Seriously excessive.



This is Reily trying to choose JUST ONE. Poor little girl. I know. It's just too hard.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Great Un-Doer

How to change bedding with a 4-year old:



Lower expectations
Shmoosh out lumps
Put sheets on
Jump
Jump
Put sheets back on
Take mysterious lump to the laundry room
Throw mysterious lump on to the bed



Lower expectations - again
Put sheets on - again
Jump - again
Jump - again
Put sheets back on - again
Take mysterious lump to the laundry room - again
Throw mysterious lump on to the bed - again



distract the lump
finish the bed

Monday, October 26, 2009

Boys vs. Girls

Payton and Taylor used to sing the song "Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better". The tune still describes them to a T!!

Let's build boats!

Boy boat:

Girl boat:
Aren't these pictures worth a thousand words? Do you REALLY need more from me?!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

How Fabulous is 4?

Well,
4 can be frowny:


4 is a little fiery.

(I love the expression. It's one we see quite often.)


4 is definitely fashionable.
(Thank you Grandma for the new dress!)

4 is fortissimo!
(Thank you Aunty Erin for rockin' out with us!)

4 is full of fructose.

4 is a fiesta with friends...and frog boots.

I think 4 will be fantastic!
Happy Birthday Reilykins!

Did you count the dresses?
4 also fluctuates between fads atleast 40 times a day.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Too many Hannahs

Thanks Disney Channel. This is what you've turned my house into.
This was all a part of Reily's big 4th birthday celebration.

video

You may need to turn down the volume on this. That tinker toy mic is pretty powerful.
It is a little nauseating...you know, the camera work and stuff...yep, that's it...the camera work.

Saturday Scramble


This is Saturday.

Time to shovel and shovel and shovel.

Payton usually maintains a plush carpet of legos atop our not-so plush berber. After a morning of threats, tooth and hair pulling...I brought out the big dog...the vacuum.

I must admit, I love the sound of the clickety-clackety as it sucks tiny toys into their eternally dusty doom.

This is Payton, scrambling in front of the vacuum trying to rescue any last singleton lego from this doom.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Southern Suitors in Hot Pursuit


So, we're there...
that point
that precipice
that frightening ledge that was always to remain distant.
Boys are beginning their encroachment on the Griffen house; and these Southern boys ARE NOT SHY.

There is a certain young man, P*, that has bluntly declared his like for my daughter, T*. This morning he walked right next to her, not a hairs width away, during walking club. He could've held her hand...if she wanted to. He boldly declared to her, "It will happen Taylor. First, you'll stumble. Then, you'll dream about me...and then, you'll get looooost in my eyes." (He stole the line from Sonny with a Chance on Disney Channel.) Taylor just stifles her grin and turns away, in denial. I love to watch it. I tell her it's flattering. But, she can just leave it at that.

M* has already had young men calling the house. One, asked for her dad; and then proceded to ask if he could have a lemonade stand with her next summer. Now that's a 1st rate 1st grade Southern gentleman! The other, was calling multiple times, every day. The moms kinda trumped that one. But, he still writes her love notes and waves eagerly every time he sees her. She waves to his bus every morning, trying to catch a glimpse of him in the dark windows.

Seriously? Not ready for this.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Why a girl needs a mom...


A girl needs a mom so she doesn't end up here...
on the stairs...
hiding the fact that
she tried to glue a headband
to her pants
to hold them up.
Let's here it for ingenuity!!
***Clarification: If this girl had a mom that was behind the sewing machine altering her pants instead of in the garage painting furniture or on the computer, she wouldn't have to be so ingenious at such a young age. It's good for her...right?***

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Photo Adventure Continued...and concluded

A few more snapshots of our summer adventures.
When asked what she did this summer, Taylor replied, "Nothin".
Seriously?


Bear World
Rexburg, ID


Slurpees
ONE of our favorite Utah treats.

Grand Canyon, AZ


Petrified Forest & Painted Desert



Cloud watching along Route 66 in New Mexico.
The sky was SO blue and the clouds really were amazing!


Signing the wall at Graceland.



Eating grilled PB & banana sandwich at the Heartbreak Hotel at Graceland.




Sleepy Space cadet
Space Camp
Huntsville, AL

This ride is for the legitimately young.
Being young at heart will not pull you through!! You may cry...or vomit.

Almost home!!!
A little bit of crazy somewhere near Atlanta.



Reily's cry for personal space.

We made it home.
We figured we logged 100 hours in the car and 20 states.
In the end, we had remnants of sanity still in tact, all 4 children alive and well, and a lot of good memories.
Fun, fun summer!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Griffen - Summer Tour - 2009

20 states...30 days...we are total rock stars!! Take a deep breath. Here we go.

Day 1:
Irmo, Sc - St. Louis, Mo

11:40- 742 mi.

Gateway Arch


Day 2:
St. Louis - Nauvoo, Il
3:21 - 195mi.

Nauvoo Temple

Nauvoo, Il - Des Moines, IA
3:10 - 191 mi.



Day 3

Des Moines, IA - Mitchell, SD

5:13 - 352 mi

Corn Palace

No, seriously, "The Corn Palace"!


Mitchell, SD - Rapid City, SD

3:55, 277 mi


The Badlands



Mt. Rushmore

Day 4

Rapid City, SD - Alliance, NE

2:27 -156 mi

Carhenge

Alliance, NE - GRANDMA'S!!!

Take the hours, take the mileage, multiply it with 4 kids. It all adds up to a long trip!! And, that's just the way TO Grandma's!! We still have the return trip to share!!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

What smart girls do on Friday night...

I found this under the couch. (amongst SO MANY other things. Kids are amazing and I thank them for tempting the cockroaches beyond their insectile self-control....but that's another story.


Written by Taylor, 5th grader, to her brother.

"
July 8 2009

There are many reasons I think you should let go of my arm and leave me alone. Through out this essay I shall explain my many reasons in many paragraphs and a variety of sentence structures and three different punctuation marks. I am quite unpleased to say that I am writing this group of pages during movie night. Now I shall use this sentence to bring my summary to a conclusion and I am now pleased to announce that I will begin my second paragraph.
This is my opening sentence to my second paragraph. In this paragraph I will explain my first reason. My reason is that while Payton is holding my arm (as I am sure you have noticed from the many spelling errors I have made so far in this essay) it is very had for me to concentrate on important matters.
My third reason "

It ends there. I'm sure she started screaming at that point. That's how interactions between the Bigs usually end.

But, she's a smart one. Watch out Oxford! She's got her eye on you!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Vomit Van (the sequel) & Tender Mercies

Day 2 of our return trip...leaving Flagstaff, AZ.

Macy's hot chocolate became "unsettled"...all over. Reily, apparently, had a sympathetic reaction and lost her breakfast too...in a van...FULL of a weeks worth of living; and a months worth of souvenirs. Poor girls. But, we were blessed in our mess.

- We were only 5 minutes away from our hotel. They were long minutes.
- Blaine usually leaves the key on the desk. This time he had it in his pocket. Hallelujah!
- I had laundry detergent on hand. Just in case.
- Macy had really good aim.

Tender mercies. One of my favorite conference talks.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Bye-Bye Birdie


Conversation from the road…

Setting: Likely Nebraska or Iowa. We were all looking for a new distraction. We’d just his one of (unfortunately) many creatures…a bird

Mom: We hit a bird.
Macy: (concerned and disgusted) And it’s feathers are on the window!!
Taylor: (sympathetically) Oh sad.
Reily: (matter of factly). Don’t worry. It’s washing off.
Payton: (with certainty) It will learn to fly with it’s legs.

Flushed with Gratitude


Sweet Ms. Macy. I love this girls outlook on everything!

In one of the MANY potty stops en route to Grandma’s house, we were lucky enough to come across automatically-flushing toilets. As I waited in line for the 3 girls to finish their potty break, I heard a swish; and Macy said, with her trademark enthusiasm, “Well, thank you toilet!!” The lady next to me started cracking up. I asked her and I ask you:

Have you been grateful for the flush of a toilet today? (or ever?)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Berry Cute

Reily has managed to keep herself busy this summer. She manages to keep us ALL on our toes...no matter what season it is!!

Reily begged to go outside. When she got outside there was a brief cloud burst. Perfect. This little duck loves the rain.



Goggle, jammies and the after-swim crash!


Berry Pickin'