Thursday, April 30, 2009

field day

So, I got this flier sent home with Elizabeth telling us about field day and realized that is a memory that I had forgotten up until that point. I remember back in the day, looking forward to field day at school each year where an entire day was dedicated to fun, games and good times.

I couldn't wait for Elizabeth to have her field day this year. The boys and I packed up our stuff and strolled on over to the school to be a spectator. Mike then met us there a little later to take on the spectator duty while I took the boys to gymnastics. I was able to make it back with the boys that afternoon for the closing ceremonies but wouldn't you know it - the memory card was full by then. Anyway, Elizabeth had a wonderful day and came home with a ribbon that she is very proud of and has displayed with all of her other ribbons she has achieved over her now short 6 years of life.

Below is a little video snippet of some of the days activities. Oh, the memories!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

my dearest Elizabeth

Oh, my dearest Elizabeth. How I love you in ways I can't even describe. I want to remember you desire to live life to the fullest and dream the biggest dreams. You are thoughtful and caring. You are an emotional little girl in so many ways. You can compassion for those that are in pain, sad or hurt.

You are growing up to be such a beautiful little girl, inside and out. Kindergarten has taught you so much and you exceed all of our expectations. You love to read to us during bedtime and you are writing beautifully these days! Your artwork in unbridled these days and you want to share it with everyone.

I dream that your passion for life and learning will only continue to grow. I know you will be a successful woman and I can't wait to see how you change the world!

I love you dearly and wish you the most wonderful birthday!

little aliens

A little goof off time for Gamma. I think they look like a couple of aliens, what do you think?

Friday, April 24, 2009

Gamma Is Here!!!

Being far away from family makes those rare visits so much more precious! We were so lucky to get my mom, a.k.a. Gamma, for an entire week.

With squeals of delight and lots of Gamma, Gamma, Gamma's - the kids were overjoyed to see her.

We spent the week snuggling, playing games, opening birthday gifts, having parties and of course running all over Niceville for all of the errands and activities we are involved in.

I am so happy that you got to experience my chaotic life mom! I love you so much!

a day of emotions

Yesterday afternoon was quite the day for the emotional roller coaster. We were all saddened when we heard the news that one of Elizabeth's karate teacher's died of a heart attack earlier that morning. It is still hard to comprehend that such a young and fit person could loose their life so suddenly.

Karate was still held and to our surprise the little kids were tested to move up to the next rank. The video of the testing is below.

Elizabeth along with another 5 year old in the class earned their yellow belt last night. It was such a great way to honor their Sensai.

I was so incredibly proud of her last night and am still in awe that she was able to complete what she did.

Sensai Scott with the kids right after their testing.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Official One

Here is what I have decided is AJ's four year old portrait!

Sorry for the lack of blogging lately. My Mom is in town and I vowed I would stay away from the computer during her visit. We have been going places and doing things...

Stay tuned for out-takes from the above photo shoot and posts about our visit.

Saturday, April 18, 2009


So, yeah - I am supposed to be out running three miles right now but instead I am sitting here at the computer doing all I can to put it off.

I stumbled upon a site called Photofunia and that has certainly helped me put off the running for a while. Thought I would share the creations...
This is the image that I started with.

I think it is between this one and the eye that are my favorites.

Yeah, yeah - I'll go run now. :)

Friday, April 17, 2009

let me count the ways...

...that your beautiful soul has changed my life over the past four years!

1.) Your bright blue eyes light up a room and bring a sense of peace when you are around.

2.) Your snuggles are a joy to look forward too. The way you hug has so much meaning and sincerity to it!

3.) Your straight forward responses can be challenging at times but at least I know what is on your mind. You are not going to let anyone make you do something you don't want to.

4.) You have a sense of compassion that neither your sister nor brother can come close to.

5.) Your imagination is wonderfully creative and often times humorous to listen to.

6.) You have an unbridled love for Spiderman right now.

7.) You look up to your peers and want to emulate them in every way.

8.) You manage to get dirty in a way that no one can match. The ring you leave in the tub is quite impressive these days.

9.) You want to be just like your Daddy and do all that he does - build, mow, and even today you told me you wanted to pick up dog poop like Daddy.

10.) Most of all you have filled my life with love that I could have never imagined in my younger years. Each year that goes by, my love for you grows by leaps and bounds. Your little face makes me smile. Thank you for being you!

The list could go on and on but AJ I want you to know how truly special you are and that you mean the world to me and your Daddy. Every day you show me a side of yourself that is blossoming and growing into a little boy that is full of wonderment and curiosity about the world around him and you are developing the skills and traits that I hope for you to have long into adulthood. You fill my heart with so much love and pride. I wish for you a wonderful birthday little man!

Four year old photos coming soon!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

fluffy bottoms

In my attempt to get Jacob to think about potty training, we have made the switch back to cloth. When AJ was about 2 1/2, he decided that potty training was a good idea of about two weeks in cloth so I am hoping for similar results this time around. I ordered some custom made "trainers" from Small Sprout and let Jacob help pick out the fabric. He is modeling his favorites in the picture. These are by far my favorite cloth diapers/trainers that I have ever used! I just love fluffy bottoms! Keep your fingers crossed for some dry days ahead of us!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter Day...

... was filled with lots of sugar, household projects and building, getting stuck in trees, setting dinner on fire and good friends and neighbors to the rescue!

Saturday we started the project of replacing our front storm door. When we moved in the glass on the door did not stay in place and came crashing down. The door was fine except you couldn't close the glass. Anyway, the owners of our house were nice enough to go let us pick out a new storm door. Mike repainted the doorway as well as hanging the door. I must say it is so pretty! The boys couldn't help but want to get in on the action with all of the tools and screws laying around.

Once the door project was complete it was off to the next big project. Shhh - it's a playground for the kids for their birthdays. Mike and I started it on our own but quickly realized that with the kids around and very complicated directions, this was going to be a long and tedious project.

So, we called in reinforcements to help out. Not only did they come willingly - they provided us with entertainment at the same time.
After being shooed away from the project site enough times, the boys must have thought that they needed to do some manly work of their own. Demolition was on their minds. The quickly got to work bringing down the little play set that has been long out grown!

Once demo was complete, I decided it was time that I get going on dinner. So with the men deep in thought I headed into the kitchen to get our kabob's ready to put on the grill.

Just a word of advice - make sure there are no plastic toys in your grill when you are cooking or you will end up having plastic coated BBQ. (Sorry - no pictures here - was a little busy trying to not to breathe in the smoke.)

I quickly realized that I had ruined dinner and wasn't quite sure what I was going to do when our dear friend and neighbor ran home and brought their dinner over. I shoved some chicken nuggets in the oven for the kids and we were back in business. Thank goodness for good friends.

Now if only the play set was kid ready! It started to rain so construction came to a halt. It has been raining her all day and is supposed to be into the night so I am thinking it will be a slow and long project at this point. Hopefully the anticipation of getting to play on it will just make the kiddos that much more excited in the end!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

more and more eggs

One of the Mom's on our street is courageous enough to take it upon herself to organize some of the fun things we do around holidays and today was a special Easter egg hunt for all of the kids on our street.
Our common area was loaded with eggs earlier in the morning. I so wish I had taken a picture because it was just so funny - our Florida room opens up into the common area so all three kiddos were lined up watching the eggs being hidden trying their best to remember where they all were.

Anyway, they all lined up and then it was off to the races by age groups.
The kids had a lot of fun and it was nice to get out and see some of the neighbors we don't often see as well as those we see all of the time. I just don't know how many more jelly beans and chocolate we need around here! :)

Friday, April 10, 2009

a day of eggs

Today was one of those busy days for us. Monday, Wednesday and Friday's, Jacob and I get some one on one time together while the other two are at school. Usually it is quite laid back and quite on those days. Well, today we were treated to not one but two school events. First we headed off to AJ's preschool for and Easter egg hunt followed by a family style picnic.

I explained over and over to Jacob that this was AJ's egg hunt and he had to help me cheer him on. What a good little trooper he was as he cheered, "Go, AJ, go!" These boys my heart flutter with joy when AJ showed Jacob his loot and Jacob sat patiently waiting for AJ to find the right egg to "share" with Jacob. I love when I get glimpses of sharing in a peaceful manner.

Unfortunately, I was unable to get any pictures of the lunch as I was too busy eating myself, yum! When the boys and I were finished, we listened to the Easter story and then I snatched AJ up to take him home a little early.

We were not home 15 minutes when it was time to head off to the next event. Elizabeth along with all of the other kindergartners made top hats and bonnets for Easter that they paraded around the whole school. We arrived for the parade just in time and were greeted by some very proud kiddos.

Elizabeth sure does have her princess parade wave down pat! Wrist-wrist-hand-hand. :)

After the parade, the kids headed into their classrooms to change out of there bonnets and top hats and then it was off to the field for an Easter egg hunt. Let me tell you, her teacher sure does have those kiddos trained. All of them were chanting, "no more than 12 eggs" while waiting in their line up.




She made it back with her 12 eggs in tow. The kids headed back to their classroom for some end of day duties and I took the boys back home. All in all I would say it was a good day with LOTS of good treats!

feedback please?

This is my entry for the constructive feedback Friday. I love this picture but the lighting on brother is just off. I used a 50mm /f 1.8 ISO 200...not sure of the rest... Anyway, any suggestions to make this photo better would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!!!

And for those family members out there that are seeking pictures of their grand kids (he he he) Check back this weekend. I have a lot of updating to do and I promise I will get to it!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

My ABC's

I thought instead of a TOT I would try something a little different that I saw on someone else's blog - a little way to get to know who the heck writes all this stuff on this blog.

So, here we go with "My ABC's"...

A - Age: I would like to think of myself as perpetually 29 but in actuality I am 31. Not too far off I guess but certainly not in my twenties any more.
B - Bed Size: Queen. I long for a King-size bed but hubby is against it. I guess we will just have to wait and see who gets the final say when and if we get a new mattress sometime in the future. C - Chore You Hate: Dishes! I despise cleaning up the kitchen after meals and hubby used to be the kitchen cleaning master but these days it has slipped a bit. Hopefully he can get in touch with that desire to clean the kitchen sometime soon because I despise dishes!!!
D - Dad's Name: Steve
E - Essential Start Your Day Item: COFFEE! Did I mention that I need coffee upon waking? I mean really - one shouldn't need coffee to go on a run but let me tell you, I can't even do that if I haven't had my coffee.
F - Favorite TV Show: Grey's Anatomy. So, when is the next new episode?
G - Gold or Silver: I am a silver kind of girl. I'm sure that gold probably looks better with my complexion but to be honest it just seems outdated to me. I like the flat (not shiny) kind of silver. H - Height: 5'6" - as average as they come.
I - Instruments You Play(ed): I played the violin in elementary school for only a little while and then I played the flute and trumpet after that. I didn't make it into high school playing instruments so I probably couldn't play either one of them now if I tried. And I certainly cannot read music any more. That is one thing that I wish I would have stuck with.
J - Job Title: Mommy, Mamma, Mom, etc. first and foremost. I am a SAHM to my three beautifully crazy children and that is more than enough to fill a full day but because I am an over-achiever, I have my own photography business and also dabble in the field of bow making with an Etsy store.
K - Kid(s): I have three little bambinos; sometimes four if you include hubby. My oldest, Elizabeth, is about to turn 6. My two boys are AJ (almost 4) and Jacob (2). They keep me hopping but to be honest, I have no idea what I would do with my days without their antics.
L - Living Arrangement: Right now we live in a single family home that we rent. Really, do you think we would buy in a market like this? Actually if we didn't still have our house in Ohio, we probably would buy a house here but oh well, right!?
M - Mom's Name: DeeAnne
N - Nicknames: My family affectionately calls me Kiwi. That is what my younger siblings called me when they were little - couldn't get out the r's. My fellow Bond Girls named me Drama. As much as I hate the name, it fits. Life at the Marlin's wouldn't be life without drama.
O - Overnight Hospital Stays Other Than Birth: Amazingly enough I have never had any except the birth of my kiddos. I did stay over night with AJ when he was a newborn and was hospitalized for jaundice when he was 10 days old. Not sure if that counts.
P - Pet Peeve: Hmmm, there are so many. ;)
Q - Quotes You Like: Right now I am saying "You get what you get and you don't fuss a bit, " a lot! Elizabeth's teacher says this in her classroom and it works for me so there you go.
R - Right or Left-Handed: Right.
S - Siblings: Two of them. I have a younger sister and brother.
T - Time You Wake Up: That should say the time your kids wake you up. My boys are early risers so they often come to my side of the bed around 6:30AM with big bright cheesy smiles on their faces. I guess there are worse ways to be woken up. I must say though, if I had my choice I would sleep in until about 8:00 every day. I like my sleep!
U - Ultimate Dessert: Choc-o-late!!! I have a huge sweet tooth and you throw in some chocolate and I am in heaven!
V - Vegetable You Dislike: I can't think of any right now. I guess if I had to say one, it would be okra. I haven't had it since I lived at home so it has been a while but otherwise, I am not a picky person at all.
W - Ways You Run Late: I end up making myself late when I spend too much time on this thing in front of me right now and don't get done what I really need to. It is like a drug..... But, really I am not late very often. I can't stand being late or people being late to something we had planned. I guess you could say that is my pet peeve.
X - X-rays You've Had: Now that is just a funny question. Let's see what I remember.... nose, wrist, ankles (both), knee, neck, and so on. I'm sure if you include all of my life, it would be my whole body. I am slightly accident prone.
Y - Yummy Food You Make: Well that is hit or miss. I'm not sure why it happens but sometimes I can make something that turns out great and the next time I make it, it is horrible. I don't think I am that good of a cook but my kids and husband are still alive so it must be alright. I do like to bake a lot though. I guess that goes back to my sweet tooth!
Z - Zoo Animal: Hippo's - love them! (Mom you know what I am getting at!) :) I love how clumsy and big and round they are.

So, do I have anything in common with you?

Monday, April 6, 2009

I ♥ Faces - Week 13

Week 13 - My Friend & I (Kids)

When I learned the subject for this week's I ♥ Faces contest, I knew exactly what picture I was going to use. These sisters were just too cute playing in the water together. How beautiful and innocent young curiosity is! To see a couple more shots from this shoot, go here.

Week 13 - My Friend & I (Adults)

And these two, ahh, sigh! I just can't say enough. Good friends of ours - we miss you dearly! Anyway, as I wipe away the tears that come from the distance we are separated by, I must just say these two have got to be a match made in heaven. You just get a vibe. Not only are they best of friends, they are truly and madly in love with one another. You are an inspiration to all of us!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


Yep! It's true! Our whole family (and I mean all 5 of us) are quarantined for Spring Break! We have strep throat. Nothing like spending some good quality time together with lots of antibiotics and the same stinkin' walls every day. Ewww!