Monthly Archives: May 2012

The Penny


So if you’ve been following me on Facebook (which that’s where all of my blog views come from, so I’m guessing you have been :p), you know that we thought Briggs swallowed a penny Friday morning, and it has kept things entertaining. We found the un-swallowed penny (thank goodness!) tonight, and I was inspired to write a story to go along with the actual penny. So here it is…

The Penny

The Penny

There once was a penny; quite mischievous was he.

He was born in 2008, and we all know how 2008 babies can be!

He decided a life of lying on the floor

Was a life too boring, and he yearned for more.

He thought, “How dull to sit here and watch things happen.

I’m dying to be a part of the action!”

He saw his chance when the baby called Briggsy-Bear

Was put down to play, and he crawls everywhere;

Getting into any and every thing he should not

His parents try to tame him, and he just laughs at them… a lot.

Quickly, The Penny shined and he shimmered

With his entire penny might, he gleamed and he glimmered!

“I did it! I caught the eye of the babe!”

But as Daddy came close, Briggsy-Bear took a defensive measure

And shoved The Penny into his mouth to hide his shiny treasure.

While being changed on the table, Daddy got a see

Of something not quite right in the mouth of his baby.

When Daddy reached in, The Penny knew this wouldn’t be good,

So he shot out as fast as he could!

Flying through the air, he landed softly in a basket.

And this is when The Penny caused most of the racket!

The Daddy never saw The Penny come out, you see,

So he called Mommy quite frantically.

The doctor said, “Don’t worry, just wait,

The Penny should pass in 24 to 48.”

Mommy and Daddy waited ever so anxiously

For each poopie diaper they had to dig through carefully.

After three days, no sign of The Penny was to be seen,

And their sweet little Briggsy-Bear was looking a little green.

He started to run a fever so high

That not even medicine could get it to subside.

Mommy rushed him to the doctor crying of The Penny

That was causing so much trouble in her poor baby’s tummy!

With a temperature over one hundred and four

The doctor said, “Rush that baby out the door

And to the ER to get a good look

As to where The Penny might be caught in a nook.”

An X-ray was had to determine the danger

Only to discover The Penny that was, was no longer.

The doctor said it was simply a virus that caused the whole blunder

“But what has happened to The Penny,” Daddy said in a wonder.

Meanwhile, The Penny, lied there in the hamper

Wondering if he was doomed to sit in dirty clothes forever.

It was the next day when Mommy was doing the laundry,

And Alas! She came across The Penny that caused this great quandary!

While The Penny did feel a little remorse, he made his confession

And shared how he hoped the Clarks learned a great lesson.

Pennies weren’t minted to be spent on the floor.

Pennies were minted to be spent at the store!


Rubber Ducky, You’re the One!


As I mentioned at the end of my last post, I wouldn’t be posting until after Briggs’s first birthday party, so here we are! I didn’t think I would be posting the evening his party was over, but I’ve been so busy every night getting things ready, that I just don’t know what to do with myself, so I figured I would blog 🙂 (Side note – I started the blog last night, but didn’t finish it until tonight).

Briggs’s first birthday party was rubber-ducky themed…here is his invitation:

I made several things for the party through out the week (birthday banners, monthly pics banners, tag/name cards for different items), but Friday night there were several things I would need to do/make, so my parents took Ava for the evening. I got a night to finish birthday preparations with only one child, and Ava got to go cheer on the Lady Hornet softball team in the 3rd round of playoffs versus Montgomery (My sis-in-law, Calli’s dad, is their head coach). Sadly, the Lady Hornets lost :(, but Ava had lots of fun at the game, and Aunt Calli has started “training” Ava for her future in softball. Here are some pictures of Ava getting her first “lesson” from Aunt Calli.

Batting lesson

Running the bases!

Calli has her work cut out for her  🙂

Now back to what I was originally posting about – I spent Friday night making pretzel ducks, Oreo pops and duck-shaped rice krispie treats (no link – those were my creation), and Briggsy’s birthday hat.

Pretzel ducks

Oreo pops pre-dipping and first batch of rice krispie ducks

Post-dipped Pops
I dyed the white candy coating a light blue to look like bubbles then sprinkled crystal sugars on top

Birthday Hat! I used blue cardstock to shape the hat, I found a bubble font on, and used a clip art rubber duck. I then found curly ribbon in just the right colors (I had to pull out the pink ribbon) to attach to the top. I actually tried to line the bottom of the hat with ribbon, but I realized that was going to be way too difficult (I’m all about easy). I was at a loss with what to do, and was gazing through my arts and crafts stash I use for Ava crafts, when I came across these yellow poms we used during our “Y” week….Genius! It came out really cute!

Saturday we spent the morning putting everything together. I was able to download this free rubber ducky template I used to make his monthly pics and birthday banner! Shawn helped teach me how to use photo shop so I could make it just the way I wanted it.

His monthly pictures…can’t believe how much he has grown!

The Birthday Boy’s throne! I used a portion of a shower curtain for the mat and the tray skirt.

The Oreo Pops and Rice Krispie ducks I made. It’s supposed to look like the ducks are taking a bubble bath, but I didn’t get the right kind of styrofoam (because I didn’t feel like going all the way to Hobby Lobby). Being that this was the very FIRST time I did anything like this, I impressed myself – I would do it better, though, next time 🙂

The AWESOME cake made by the super talented, Lisa Paholek! She never lets me down!

Close up of the cake before we put it on the table

The “Duck Feed”
Colored goldfish in one bucket, and pretzels (topped with my pretzel ducks in the other). I used fancy scissors to cut the tops off of white paper bags and attached a “Duck Feed” label to put the snacks in.

The smash cake!

“Thanks for coming! I had buckets of fun!”
The favor table…mini buckets with bubbles (I didn’t know they were mini until they came in the mail – Oh well!) At the end of the party, Ava deemed herself the “Favor” police, and made SURE that everyone took one. I pitied the fool that told her, ‘No, thank you.” She didn’t let you pick your color, either. Her motto was, “You get what you get, and you don’t throw a fit!” A teacher in the making 🙂

Unfortunately, I forgot to get pictures of our outside decorations. I used a rubber ducky shower curtain, cut it into strips, and hung it on a tension rod outside our door for our guests to walk through. In the back yard, we had 3 tents set up with a baby pool and a splash pool for the kids. I also had all the drinks outside in blue galvanized buckets along with tags using the above template to label each bucket with what kind of drink was inside.

Everything was now set up and ready to go!

Briggs waiting on his friends!

When my parents arrived with Ava, we snuck in a quick family photo before everyone got wet, messy, and things got too hectic! The last thing I wanted was to end the party with an, “Ahhh – we never got a family picture!”

As soon as people started arriving, we all booked it outside to enjoy the weather and the pools!

Mason enamored with the super cool rope :)! Mason is 3 months (to the day) older than Briggs. His mom, Melinda, and I teach 4th grade together….and can’t wait for summer 🙂

Cousins came! Here’s pretty Kate letting us know that she doesn’t just give pictures away for free 🙂

Cousins only 4 months apart! Briggs and Haden playing in the splash pool together!

Haden the stud!

The birthday boy!

Miss Audrey splashing away! Audrey’s daddy, Ryan, was college roommates with Shawn.

An action shot of Jack going down the slide! Jack’s parents, Luke and Julie are good friends of ours we met through my cousin, Joey.

Ava’s turn! Funny story with Ava…
After we took our family picture, she couldn’t wait to get in the pool, so she started to strip naked outside. I quickly put a halt to that, rushed her inside, and got her in her bathing suit. Later in the party, when it was time to get out of the pool, she decided she was cold and was going to fix that problem right then and there…so IN THE MIDDLE OF THE PARTY, she stripped completely naked! Her daddy swooped in with a towel , and she ran with the towel covering all but her naked little bottom up to the house, and left the rest of us laughing hysterically (for now – hopefully she doesn’t make that a habit :p).

Alex getting his feet wet! Alex and his parents, Rose and Tomasz, are our next door neighbors.

The kids had a blast playing outside in the water, even though it was pretty chilly for mid-May (highs in the low 80s). I NEVER imagined I would have to worry about a splash party being to cool this time of year in Texas! Crazy! But you won’t hear me complaining!! Once everyone came inside, it was time for birthday cake! I couldn’t wait to see what Briggs would do with his smash cake. Ava cried and wouldn’t touch hers at her 1st birthday party. At the time, I thought it was because of all the people watching her, but we later learned it was because she doesn’t like cake (WhAt?!). Briggs, on the other hand, has not kept his sweet tooth a secret.

Checking it out

This stuff’s pretty good! (Excuse the goldfish – I had to keep him occupied while we were preparing everything, and he will only happily sit in his high chair if there is food in front of him).


At this point I realized I never put on the birthday hat I spent hours making (Grrrr!) So I threw it on him for a quick photo op!

Love this boy!

Briggs paused for some deep thoughts

Once I finished photographing Briggs, we passed out the big cake for everyone else. Along with the cake, we served ice cream. I found this super cool idea to scoop ice cream into cupcake liners before the party, and then freeze them so you don’t have to scoop ice cream the day of. Brilliant! I went one step further and stuck cup cake toppers in them (which -bonus- made them super easy to pick up that way). They were a hit!

Excuse the lumpy ice scream – my ice scream scoop decided it was time to retire while I was doing all the scoops…of course 🙂

Now it was present time! At this time, Ava decided it was her duty as big sister to take over the presents (imagine that). Lucky for her, Briggs still hasn’t figured out the whole “presents” thing, so he happily obliged. I think he’s in the background at least in the pictures :p She’s going to be REAL disappointed next year!

The audience

Ava pushing the big gift all by herself

She means business when it comes to presents

After present time, Ava convinced Aunt Calli to open up the fire truck ball pit she and Ryan got…

We had to give Ava a gentle reminder that this was meant for Briggs, but that he would share 🙂 Briggs is all ready for bed and driving the fire truck, just like Uncle Ryan was doing that night! We missed him at the party!

Briggs’s first birthday party was so much fun, and we are so thankful for all our friends and family that made it so special! Our children are SO blessed to have so many people who love and care for them!

Now I will end this post, with Happy Mother’s day! Mother’s Day unfortunately took a back seat to all the birthday festivities this year, but it was still a special day. We got to spend Saturday with both of our mothers, and gave them each a phone call today. Wish we could have done more, but Shawn had to usher at church, and then because he was busy with birthday party duties all day Saturday, he had quite a few work things that needed to be done today. We are also still trying to get the house back in order (I wonder how long the wall decor will stay up…hmmm). We had the lovely ladies over at Domestic Services, BCS clean our house Friday, but Shawn and I decided that the next party we have at our house, we’re going to schedule a cleaning afterwards!

What was I doing?


That’s how I feel lately, like I’m always asking, “And what was I doing?” All I have to say is, I can’t wait for summer! 20 more school days (not that I’m counting). I know I haven’t blogged in a couple of weeks, because, well, I’ve been tired.  I think I last left off right before the STAAR test….whew! Glad that’s over!! (Although I had a student today ask me when the “real” test was….*deep breath* *deeeeeep breath*).

I am sad to say that what I predicted came true :/ I have not kept up the pace with our letter of the week activities. We have still been doing them, but I have not been doing them every night (I knew that was a bit ambitious), and I have not been taking as many pictures…we’re just lucky if we get the damn thing done. Oops….did I say that? Bad Mommy.

After the letter O, Ava picked the letter G for guitar! Shawn went through an “electric guitar phase” when he was younger, so we have had an old electric guitar in our house that Ava loves to play with. On Wednesday night (our first night of letter activities), we had gymnastics, and then she came home and serenaded us with the guitar. She sang quite a few songs (written by Ava), and put on quite the concert 🙂

Ava’s concert

Again, I wish I could say I planned that activity rather than doing a color page, buuuuut, I didn’t. This is how it happened. Pick up kids from school, get home, feed Briggs, give Ava a snack, get her dressed for gymnastics  (If you want to go to gymnastic you have to wear your leotard – no, you can’t wear the ballerina tutu because that one’s dirty – you can wear the pink leotard or the black leotard – I want the ballerina tutu – sorry, that one’s not available – wa wa – she eventually got the pink leotard on), go to gymnastics, come home, eat dinner, do baths, where’s Ava – I can hear her singing, Oh, she’s in the office singing with the guitar – perfect, that’s our letter this week. Done. 

Thursday night we did a “real” activity 🙂 I found a template with a big G and a little g, and she went outside and collected grass to glue on the big G, and then glued green glitter on the little g. It involved glitter – so she loved it, of course!

G is for Green, Grass, Glitter, & Glue!

The next thing we did (notice I’m not going by days anymore – this is when we stopped doing a “daily” activity – we always at least talk about the letter and its sounds) was make a guitar. Again, I would love to say that I came up with this on my own, but it all started with Ava, again. It must have been Sunday because she’s wearing a dress in the pictures. She got a paper plate out of the pantry, and asked to paint on it. I got out her paints, and she wanted green. We then talked about what letter “green” starts with, etc. While she was painting her plate, she told me it was her guitar (another G word), so I was like, “Oh, Yeah! We can make this a G activity!” I went rummaging through Shawn’s office to find something that could make the handle, and I found a box that I cut a flap off of. Ava then painted it, and I stapled it to the paper plate.

Painting the neck of the guitar

Then I had some green yarn (I know – I’m super prepared), that we used to make the strings and the strap. And no craft is complete, of course, without…….glitter! So we had to add green glitter to the guitar. Ava (and Briggs – to Ava’s dismay) have been using her guitar ever since – I think we have a star in the making  : )

Ava playing her guitar

After I took a picture of her playing the guitar, she wanted to take a picture of me playing. This picture is courtesy of Ava 🙂

For our “G” food for the week, we had Grilled steak with Garlic bread, and a salad (that didn’t start with G :p)…I don’t remember what night we did that, though. Probably Sunday.

Monday night we did read, “Goodnight Moon.” This was Ava’s favorite book when she was around 18 months, and so I was a little nostalgic reading it to her….she’s growing up so fast!

Before we knew it, it was time for another letter….V for volcano! I had high hopes to actually make a volcano this week, but that never happened – maybe during “review” week. I really failed during “V” week. We didn’t do much with it. We just flat-out skipped Wednesday night…Thursday night, she was supposed to dot letter “v’s” with her paint dotter. This website has awesome pages with a “word search” like page for each letter. Ava really liked doing that, except she wasn’t content with just dotting the v’s…she wanted to dot all the letter (hence the r and the y), so I let her get the yellow dotter, and I would tell her what letter to dot (I focused on the letters we have previously worked on). She also practiced writing the letter “v” at the bottom.

On Sunday, we ate vegetables, vermicelli with chicken and cheese , and I tried to get her to eat Vanilla ice cream for dessert, but if you know Ava, you know she is not big into sweets, so she wanted nothing of the ice cream, but she did want some Pringles.

For our V craft, we were going to make  a V is for Vase craft with flowers, etc, but we never got passed coloring the coffee filters for the vase. Ava doesn’t really like to color with crayons, so we didn’t get very far, and I was too tired to push. Terrible, I know. 

Monday night we read “Dora’s Valentine Adventure.” Ava did her usual, “I’m going to pretend I don’t know what the letter v looks like and drive Mommy crazy,” but we did manage to get through the book (Ava had to “read” the story to me, of course) with her pointing out the V’s. 

And now it’s Wednesday night, and we have not chosen a new letter yet. Again…oops. *Sigh* At this point, I’m just happy to be getting the kids to bed on time. Have I mentioned I’m ready for summer? 20 days…

And Ava’s not the only one keeping us entertained….Briggs has been doing his fair share lately…

Briggs just started standing by himself – AHHHHHHH!!!!! That only means his first steps are sooo close! And what did he stand for? Pizza. Yes, that would be what he stands for – he will do anything for food. If you eat anything in front of him, you better plan on sharing! I am still trying to come to terms with the fact that he turns 1 in just 2 short weeks. I love my Briggsy-Bear!

I have also been busy planning his first birthday party! And when I say busy planning, I mean I’ve been busy thinking about what I’ve been planning in my head. I still have so much to do for that. So, don’t hold your breath for my next blog post. It will probably come after his birthday party (which is May 12), and then comes his actual birthday on the 16th….so as usual, life will be crazy. I wouldn’t have it any other way!