Sunday, June 28, 2009

260 Checking in

We are spending the weekend at my in-laws so there will be no pictures in this post. OH ... I know, a complete blasphemy! We came down for my Great-Niece's first birthday and it has been great to see the family. And even better that I know I will be seeing the rest of MY family in just a few days. I just wanted to stop in since I did not post my SOOC Saturday/Sunday picture. I will be posting tomorrow and I will be overloading your computer with adorable pictures very soon. I hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend! I know I am!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

259 Love Unexpected

Part of Love Thursday is the lesson that love is EVERYWHERE, and so this week I would like to share two pics of love found in unexpected places. (I missed last week, so you get a twofer)

The Memphis Zoo has bamboo planted at every turn. People have taken the time to scratch their love into the stalks. MANY MANY initials and hearts. I wonder if that will give our panda's indigestion and heart burn .... I can't help it!! I had to say it! I was trying to pick up my poor sad DIRTY living room when I found this speck of Play-Doh on the floor. Just a random piece that Connor had discarded in his attempt to destroy the world.
So remember to look for love ALL around you. And remember to tell people you love them, and SHOW them you love them, too! Life is short as we learned today especially. Farrah Fawcett lost her battle with cancer at the age of 62. Michael Jackson went into cardiac arrest and died at the age of 50. LIFE IS SO SHORT! Embrace it, live it, and don't be afraid to LOVE!
Love Thursday is hosted by Karen Walrond at Chookooloonks. Please stop in and share your Love Thursday moment, or just check out hers and the other links in the comments.

Monday, June 22, 2009

258 The Pink Palace Museum

I grew up in Atlanta, so when I posted on Facebook that I was going to the "Pink Palace" I was not surprised to have Atlanta buddies questioning me. In Atlanta they have the Pink Pony, which is a "shake" joint ... so many people wondered why I would take my kids to the Pink Palace. I am a large child, and I giggle everytime I say Pink Palace because they are so very similar. Okay, so it is mainly in my head, but I do see the connection. Of course, that is all beside the point ...

Last week I took Katie, Connor and Mia to the Pink Palace Museum. We have a free pass, and it would be a shame not to use it. At least this time they actually had power! I hate to even think of the meltdown that would have occurred if Katie was thwarted again. She had wanted to go on Tuesday, but then she went to play and did not mention it again until 2pm, and I refused to take her when the museum closes at 5pm.

So, last Wednesday we headed out at about 10 o'clock to check out the Pink Palace. Fittingly, both girls chose to wear pink (and I actually JUST made that connection). Oh, and the same shoes. These are their "special" sandals because they have DIAMONDS! Kids can be so cute ... sometimes!
The Pink Palace is a mansion ... ohh, duh. It is faced with pink Georgia marble ... oh, you probably guessed that, too. Do you know how it became a museum? Sad story really. Clarence Saunders, the founder of the Piggly Wiggly grocery store chain, began building the house in 1922 .. then lost his fortune in 1923 in an "epic battle with the New York Stock Exchange", before the house was even completed. It was then donated to the City of Memphis to be used as a museum, and eventually construction was finished and it opened as a museum in 1930. That is the short version of course, if you want to know the rest of the story then click on this link.

On the first level there is a large exhibit of skulls, skeletons, birds, bugs, and dinosaurs... among a few other things.

Right now there is an exhibit called "Dinosaurs and Sea Monsters" which involves animatronic dinosaurs and some actual fossils. Very cool, and just a tiny bit scary for the girls. You can probably tell, my favorite thing is the Clyde W. Parke Miniature Circus And then, and INCREDIBLY freaky section on medical history!! This one depicts a trip to the dentist. Which is thankfully less gory than the Civil War Field Doctor's Tent where they are cutting off a man's gangrened leg. Oh yeah ... you don't want to look too close at that. Some spooky set-ups to show us how Memphis houses might have looked back in the day. Had to take a picture in front of Andrew Jackson. Chip has been told that there is a possibility we are related to him.
(We are also kin to those Tupelo Presley's ... just not close enough to count) This is one of Elvis's Army uniforms.
AND ... the best part of any visit to a museum ... THE GIFT SHOP! I think we spent almost as long in there trying to pick out the perfect things.

I am sure we will be going back, but I may have to figure out a way to make it back on my own sometime. The things that I found interesting were the exact exhibits that Katie and Mia wanted to run right past.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

257 Why do I even bother?

I stayed up late. I wasn't even on the computer. I wasn't Twittering or cruising Facebook. I wasn't editing pictures (although I should have been). I wasn't searching for cute pictures of cats typing or other nonsense. I was CLEANING! *GASP* I know, a dirty dirty word!!! I couldn't help myself, the house was just to that point where I could not take it for a moment longer. I cleaned. And when I came down the stairs this morning this is what my living room looked like ... It is not spotless by a long shot! But this is pretty darn spiffy for the Jaxon house. I also straightened up the kitchen throughout the morning, but you will have to take my word for it. I picked up a few times. Just little stuff that had been dropped and left behind, but we were doing pretty good on keeping clean. Connor did manage to spill his juice pouch on the floor and throw his toaster strudel at the couch, but that is normal messiness. And then ... they had to come in from the pool. Katie said the sunscreen was stinging her eyes (even though it had been on for an hour at that point) and they trooped into the house. I was trying to occupy them, so I popped up some popcorn and got them settled in ...

at least Katie started to pick it up ... and I do mean started because she sure as heck never finished. I did get the worst of the popcorn off the floor. I got Connor fed and bathed and tucked into bed. And then the girls had to do crafts (did I mention we had an impromptu sleepover?). Paper bag puppets. I dove into my poor neglected craft room to retrieve a few supplies (the most action that room has seen in a LONG time). And I set them up and went into the kitchen to smash up some guacamole (YUM) And then it was time to get tucked in. When I came back down from reading two Scooby Doo stories this is what I found ...

This is also my SOOC Saturday post. Sure, what could I have done in editing to make these pictures any better? Not much. They are pictures of a sad room, and no amount of editing would improve them. I am sure that Melody and the others participating in SOOC Saturday have much more inspirational pics to show you, so hop on over to Slurping Life!!
(look on my left sidebar ... computer is not wanting to paste the link in- GRRR)
I am a bit of a negative Nelly today , and I am sure you can understand why.

Friday, June 19, 2009

256 Honeysuckle

Say "Hello" to the nice people, Honeysuckle!And in case you think this is just Spot, re-named ... Spot has a big brother, and his name is Honeysuckle. Sure, don't you think of slimy, bumpy boy frogs when you hear that name!? Apparently Katie does. Honeysuckle joined (was forced into)our family on Tuesday night. He had the misfortune of being outside the backdoor when I was checking on the re-filling of our pool. Katie was very insistent that I catch him to join "his brother". He and Spot have adjusted to each other very quickly. Not like they have much of a choice. My only problem ... I don't know who is eating the flies!! I put plenty in there during the day, and I just have to hope that they are sharing.
Nothing we say will convince Katie that this is not actually Spot's older brother. Obviously they are brothers! They both have spots. Yeah, apparently that is just THIS family of frogs. Little known fact ... only Jaxon Frogs have spots. Now ya know!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

255 A few hours with Connor

First, he discovered Katie's doll stroller. He is a mite big for it, but he spent the whole day waiting for us to put him in and push him around. When he tried to climb in on his own he always fell over ... and then he cried, and we had to put him in and push him around. It was just easier to cut out the fall.
We checked out Spot. In 3D!! no less :) LOL
He helped me feed the neighbors cat. Poor Punkin needed some love!He helped me unpack the box from Intex with our new filter hoses and pool cover. He did much more, but this is all that was documented on camera. He also took a can of black olives from me and started popping them in his mouth. He even figured out how to stick them on his fingers all by himself. He is an Olive Monster prodigy! I actually do have pics of the olive eating, just not uploaded, and since my computer likes to make me restart before I can upload then you will just have to imagine the cuteness that is my Olive Monster.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

254 The Frog Prince

Daddy found this little guy outside the backdoor. He is about the size of a quarter, and I am hoping he is big enough to eat the flies I put in his tank (and for some reason our neighborhood is COATED in flies). Katie has named him Spot ... because we are real original like that. Katie and Connor both love to watch him. He doesn't do much, but he is awful cute!

Two of my online-buddies made a joke about making him a little crown .. and you know I had to do it!! Katie picked out the pink. Who knows, maybe Spot is a Queen and not a King.

Monday, June 15, 2009

253 Power? We don't need no stinkin' power!

On Friday we were slammed with a sudden storm. And I do mean SLAMMED and SUDDEN. The first I heard about the storm was when it was 55 minutes away. The sky looked fine. You could kind of see some clouds in the distance, but it did not look like there was anything to worry about. Here in the South, we are used to some pretty strong storms. The "severe thunderstorm warnings" usually fall on deaf ears. We roll our eyes as our regularly scheduled programming is interrupted by radar reports and boring weathermen droning on and on about clouds and frequency of lightening strikes. And nothing happens. BUT ... when something does come of these warnings, it sure comes in a BIG way!
We were in the backyard, splashing around in the pool (told you we weren't overly concerned). Kaitlyn had gone home in case it got bad, but it was still a ways out so I let the girls jump in the pool. Their thirty minutes of pool time was up, and the clouds were rolling in. In the time it took for me to point out that the sky was getting dark, the clouds had tripled. They were racing across the sky, straight toward us. We got inside, and Mia's mom called to say she was driving down to get her. She pulled in the driveway. I opened the door and FWOOSH! The rain and the wind hit! The power went out. "Uh, you wanna come inside???!!!" So, we all hunkered down at my house. I unloaded the closet under the stairs, which is no small task. The kids waivered between being SCARED and enjoying the new play space in the closet. The girls were gathering "supplies". They put bottles of water in the closet, and were asking for food. The storm rolled through so quickly! In that first blast the neighbors lost one of their trees (and as a result a section of fence) , but luckily for me it was the tree on the other side of their yard. The tree on my side of their yard would have landed in our pool.
The really fun thing ... we did not have power, but two doors down they did. We just happened to be on the wrong grid at the wrong time. My neighbor across the street (and thankfully two doors down) texted me that two telephone poles had snapped like twigs as he was driving by. His wife, my ShutterBuddy, made it to her parents house and into their storm shelter. All of us were texting around checking on everyone. We hung out for a while across the street. We descended on ElCharro's for dinner, and then we headed back home. We spent the night in the living room, by the light of two lanterns. Connor did sleep in his crib, we just left the door open since there was no noise to keep him awake (and no monitor to hear him if he cried). At this point we were told it could be noon on Sunday before we had power.
A few hours before the storm hit, we had made plans to meet some of our dear friends at the Pink Palace. They were going to be up from Oxford so that Daddy Joe could take some huge test, part of becoming a school administrator, and Julie and Molly needed someone to kill time with. Like every one else in the Memphis/North Mississippi area, we had signed up for the free membership to the Pink Palace so it seemed like the obvious choice. As usual, we arrived late. Oh, and did I mention that we had not PRINTED the free pass, and with no power .... you get the idea. Street lights were out, but it was almost as though every other streetlight was out. We pulled into the Pink Palace, and the parking lot was EMPTY! Yeah ... they did not have power. So, we decided to try the Children's Museum or Memphis. Gates were closed, no cars ... I am guessing NO POWER. So, where do you go when you need to kill some time? We headed to the Memphis Zoo. The animals don't need power (although I was a little concerned about electric safety doors). And SURPRISE ... it was a popular place on Saturday.
We had a great time walking around in the sweltering heat. They had a few generators hooked up. There was a food place open at one end and an icee place at the other. There was quite a bit of damage. Especially in the African Animals exhibit. The tree in the Zebra area was down, and there were quite a few down in the ostrich/gazelle exhibit. But, for the most part it was a great visit. Best place in the zoo? The doorway to the sea lion show! There was at least a cool breeze blowing off the water.
The girls were ADORABLE!! They were holding hands and had a really good time with each other. Miss Molly was enjoying Connor, too. When we ate she insisted on feeding Connor some of her food. Connor would just grin and babble at her. She was so cute. She said "I think he LOVES me!" and I am pretty sure he does! Maybe she can start asking Daddy Joe for that baby brother now!!
I will have to come back and finish this post later. Connor is screaming and wants me to give him everything on my desk. Of course, there is not much on my desk for a baby to play with ...

Sunday, June 14, 2009

252 Shorty

So my keyboard is giving me fits! Connor spilled Coke on it and now it is WONKY! The keys will open windows - q opens my home page and a- opens shopping. I am typing this with the onscreen keyboard. It is not fun! So, without further ado - my SOOC shot...

an afternoon at the pool.


SOOC Saturday is at Slurping Life! Drop in and tell Melody "HI"

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

251 Love Thursday

Right now, what am I loving? It happens to be the same things that I am loathing. The weather. The pool. Summer Vacation.

So far the temperature has not been outrageous, but it has been SO HUMID that I think I might melt. But the really annoying thing is that I do NOT melt! If anything the heat and humidity has made me want to eat more. We went to the baseball game of a couple of Katie's little friends and I almost died! I showered before we left, but you never would have known. I was sweating buckets, and so was everyone else!! It is miserable! If it would just RAIN and get it over with then this humidity would roll away.

We finally got the pool up for Katie. It is lopsided. The tubes for the pump are cracked. We had to throw out the chlorine tablets and they have not been replaced yet. Did I mention it is not level? But, it is up and Katie is in HEAVEN! She would stay in that pool from the time she woke up until she prunes up so much she can't move. She also wants to spend that time with her friends. And Connor wants to be in the pool, too. You know where that leaves me? In the pool. Playing lifeguard. The main rule we need is NO HORSEPLAY! Those girls are nuts!! One day they were playing High School Musical which consisted of them yelling "Two Faced Backstabber!" at each other. OHH, the things they are learning on tv!! Connor wanted a float, so we got his float. Now he has discovered that he can stand up and the water is below his chin. So now I spend all my time walking along behind him, waiting for him to tumble into the water. My back is killing me! But, for those few instants of peace and happiness ... I am pretty happy the pool is up.

Summer Vacation - oh, how I loved it when I was a kid. Now I am not so sure. I do love having Katie home with me, but I am getting tired of having to provide constant entertainment. There are art projects, and tv, and swimming, and pouting, and crying, and complaining. It is non-stop!! Yes, my Mom is laughing her rear off right now, thinking about me not wanting Katie to head off for school. Of course now I look forward to those hours of non-Katie time. Guilt free Connor time. I miss it!!
Now I just have to stop being the Summer Scrooge!
Check out the other Love Thursday pics at Chookooloonks -
Quite honestly, I am tuckered from all the sun. I can't type straight so I am headed to bed. Happy Love Thursday everyone!!

Monday, June 8, 2009

250 Macro Monday - Frogger

It is well known that Katie is terrified of frogs. When she was just a wee thing, she was playing barefoot in the yard, and she accidentally ALMOST crushed a frog. She pulled back her foot when she felt it, and the poor thing hopped away. Two nights later she woke up crying. I went into her room to find her, grabbing her neck "THERE'S A FROG (FWOG) ON MY THROAT(FROAT)! THERE'S A FROG(FWOG) ON MY THROAT(FROAT)!!" And ever since then she has been scared of frogs. Well, I should say ... she is scared of frogs in the wild. She loves them when they are in cages so she can look at them. The Herpetarium at the Memphis Zoo is one of her favorite spots (and not just because it is air conditioned - which is my reason) Last year, we had one in a fish tank that I had to catch flies for everyday ... but I digress. Katie does NOT like frogs to be out in the yard. She does NOT like frogs to be near the doors. She will still make me carry her to the car if she thinks there might be a frog outside the door. She will ask if we can go in through the garage when we come home. SHE DOES NOT LIKE FROGS! (do I sound like Dr. Suess yet?) Yesterday, while Daddy was putting up the pool out hopped this little guy. We put some water in the lid of the sandbox and set him down. AND SHE DID NOT FREAK OUT! She even thought about touching him. When he hopped away, she did not run screaming for the house. Maybe this will be the year we no longer fear the tiny toothless frog (this one would have fit on a half-dollar)! We can all hope!

Macro Monday is hosted over at Lisa's Chaos! Please stop in to checkout other Macro Monday shots. Just look for Mr. Linky!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

249 Sunday Series #3 - Easy Bake Oven

As usual, this is going up on "Carrie Time". I tend to get caught up in doing something and all the sudden it is the middle of Sunday and I have not put my Sunday Series up yet. Not that it really matters since I am the only one doing it, but one day ... one day someone else may join in! HEY! It could totally happen.

Katie recently turned 7, and we went down to visit the in-laws to help them get their computer set up. While we were there, we had a second birthday cake and Katie got some more money to add to her stash. Of course that was burning a hole in her pocket, so we hit up Toys'R'Us on Saturday. Originally we had planned on doing Build-A-Bear, too but she spent all her money in Toys'R'Us (and by all I mean ALL ... she went in with $101. She spent $100.40 ... and then she got a sticker from the vending machine for 50 cents ) She did pretty good though. She did not buy any make-up. Most of what she bought was not even junk.

She wanted to buy a sewing machine ... strike that - a TOY sewing machine. I already have two machines, so I finally convinced her that she should get something else. I told her that I would have to help her when she sewed on the toy one just like on the real one, so she should save her money. She is getting older because she ACTUALLY LISTENED to me! She has been looking at the DS storage box for awhile, and she got a few more (unneeded) DS accessories. She bought Barbie in Mariposa, which is the only Barbie movie that we did not own. Hannah Montana Bubble Bath and a Hannah dog tag necklace. And, in place of the sewing machine ... AN EASY BAKE OVEN! She has wanted one forever, so I was glad she chose to spend HER money on it.

Katie wants to form her own "Cooking Club" now. Guess we can break out the sewing machine and make her an apron. That should be stress free :)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

248 SOOC Saturday - with my NEW lens!

My 50mm 1.8 lens came!! OH YES!! I am in LOVE!! Now I really want to run out and get a few more prime lenses. No muss, no fuss. You got this focal length and you gotta work with it. These were taken on Wednesday, moments after I opened the box it was delivered in. I just wish I had this lens when we were shooting the wedding a few weeks ago.

I call this one - I'm Too Sexy!

And this one reminds me of John Goodman as Babe Ruth....

SOOC (straight-out-of-camera) Saturday is hosted by Melody at Slurping Life! Please stop in and check out her SOOC shot, and the others that are linked.