Saturday, September 27, 2008

First practice

Devin started tee-ball today. He has been so excited since registration and uniform sizing. Because of Ike, his first practice with The Twins (his team) was pushed back one week. You know, who really wants to go outside to play when you have to deal with picking up after a hurricane?

Anyway, Garrett and Jacob were not registered this year because I missed the deadline. I didn't want to ask my parents for the money even though they offered. My Mom chewed me out for missing the date and not taking their money. Maybe I'm weird, but I feel awful having to accept money from my parents.

When we arrived at practice I asked if people could sign up late. The coordinator said yes (with a $10 late fee). Devin's coach even let the boys get in a practice even though we haven't paid yet. All 3 boys had a blast! The coach was really good with 11 four year old boys. They were all over the field and by the end of the hour everyone was ready to go.

Of coarse I had my camera. Here are the boys in action. Enjoy!

Garrett with a swing and a miss!

Devin makes contact!

Jacob needs alittle help from Coach Mike.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Oatmeal cookies

Before I begin I just want to warn you that graphic pictures will be shown. Proceed with caution.

So, the infamous oatmeal cookies were made for our neighbors as a thank you. I went this morning to their front door, rang the bell, and received no answer. The cookies returned to the kitchen table while I took Garrett to school. 2 hours go by and I see our neighbor mowing the lawn. I run to the kitchen and pick up the cookies. As I'm walking to the door, I notice ants. ANTS FREAKING ATE THE COOKIES! Millions of ants swarmed the plate. (Since the storm and having to open all the windows and doors we have bugs.)

I threw the cookies in a trash bag and cried. Yes, it was one of those days. The day went on with the trash bag sitting in our bedroom. I was in the midst of throwing out trash from the bathroom, emptying the vacuum bag, and left the bag in our room on the floor. Jacob and I went to pick Garrett up from school.

I opened the door to find this.....

And after some investigation I found this....

And this was the consequence....

#1 - At least she pooped on the tile floor. #2 - At least she pooped far enough from the door that I didn't smear it all over the place when I opened the door. #3 - I love this dog even though she ate all the oatmeal cookies and pooped on the floor.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Days 9 - 13 Combined

We finally got power back on day 13 (Thursday afternoon) almost a full 2 weeks without power. I did not ride it through the entire two weeks at home though. By Monday I was driving to my parent's, who had lights and A/C. It's amazing that when you are accustomed to no A/C how cold everything seems to be. I froze my butt off!

Once we made it to my parent's house things didn't seem as horrible anymore. That's why I combined the remainder of the days. People in Houston still do not have power (including Chase's parents). Centerpointe seems to be moving fast in reconnecting service, but not fast enough.

I made homemade cookies for the neighbors before I left. They were delicious. Hopefully, the neighbors think so too. They really helped out through this time and I can't say thank you enough. People hardly get to know their neighbors because of privacy issues or fear, but I'm grateful that we got to know what wonderful people they are.

Now is the task of cleaning up the house. We had mold grow on things that I thought couldn't grow mold. The house itself stinks. I feel like scrubbing everything down with bleach. I was happy to run the dishwasher this morning and to start the laundry. Can you believe I missed cleaning? Things are on there way back to normalcy. I can't wait!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Update on the party with pictures

My Grandmother did not tell us to get the hell out. Instead she chose to ignore us. I don't know which is worse. Ultimately, I regret going (even if it was a free meal). The only person who chose to talk to us was my uncle Jimmy. My 2 aunts spoke briefly to us and that seemed forced. They were constantly looking for a way out of the conversation.

Even though things were uncomfortable, I had a good time with what I consider my family. See the pictures below.

My neice Lorelai and Garrett

Chase and Me

My cousin, Amie, and her daughter Brianna.

My brother, Robert, and his wife, Stacy.

The 3 men in my life that I adore. (I wish Devin was with us)

My beautiful cousins, Amie and Jessica. They obviously got the good genes.

Day 7 - Saturday

It's been one full week since Ike has hit and nothing has changed other than the weather. The cold front is drifting off which is making us all more miserable.

We are getting ready to celebrate my Grandmother's 70th birthday. It is a surprise party and it will certainly be a surprise for her and us. We haven't seen my Mom's side of the family in over 7 years. Would you call it bad blood between us? I'm not sure. I've had anxiety about seeing everyone today; it's even affecting my dreams. My grandmother walks into the room, notices us, and tells us to get the hell out.

I'll admit that I'm bitter. She has 3 great grandchildren who she refuses to meet. With both children I received a phone call while I was in the hospital. She asked for my address and phone number so she could send a card. That card never came. Whatever she has against us, shouldn't be used against my children. My brother and his daughter are in the same boat (other than the fact she didn't even know he had a daughter until a couple of months ago). Tonight will be the first time that she meets my boys and my neice.

I'm hoping that we come back to a house full of lights. My fingers, toes, and eyes are all crossed.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Day 6 - Friday

Today I am kid-free and loving it. Sometimes I feel horrible for being happy when the kids are away, but in reality I need the break. Just one day to myself to re energize my emotions. I love my kiddos and when they actually leave I miss them. I guess it's a catch 22.

The laundry is piling up in the house. I tried before the storm to get all of the laundry done because I knew the power would be out. There was one load in the washing machine before I could dry them. Stupid me, didn't get them out of the wash so they were alittle stinky.

I went to my cousin's house for the day and brought my 4 huge laundry baskets. I'm jealous of their washer and dryer! They have the huge machines with a million options. It took all day to get all the laundry done, but I got to spend time with my cousin.

Other than that, it was a pretty uneventful day. We still have no power as you can tell. Just waiting it out!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Day 6 - Thursday

Devin went to work with Chase today for 2 reasons. #1 - to give me some sort of break. #2 - because Devin's Mom had the option to pick him up. Of coarse, she found out that I kept her son by myself yesterday and threw a temper tantrum. So, in return she punished Devin by not picking him up.

Garrett and Jacob got to spend some much needed time alone with me. We had a fun day. Lunch at Friday's and a trip to Toys R Us. What kid wouldn't like that? It's amazing how much the kids are growing up. Garrett wanted a puzzle instead of an actual toy. Jacob followed in his footsteps and wanted one also.

Jimmy came to pick them up this afternoon. He got power yesterday and didn't want to pick the boys up. I explained that they were tired of being in a house without power and it would be better if they went with him early. Reluctantly, he picked them up a day early. It's hard being a part time father!

4 more days until we have power! WEEEE!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Day 5 - Wednesday

My nerves are shot! It was the first day that I actually cried because of the stress of the situation. Chase went back to work and I was home with all 3 kiddos. They are sick of being in the house as much as I am. I don't blame them for being wild. The day started off with them not being able to share their toys and ended with a fight over corn. I had had enough!

I've been saying that the worst thing about not having electricity is that you are literally in the dark as to when you will get power restored. It's disappointing to leave the house and hope that you come back to A/C and lights, but instead it's the same. My hopes are shot that we will get power anytime soon!

Tonight we watched the news for any updates for our area. By next Tuesday Center Point will have restored 50-70% of power to it's customers. My thoughts?? That's it?!? 50% isn't a huge number when we are talking about millions of people will still be in the dark. They began reading zip codes off like lotto numbers as to when people would get electricity. Our zip code fell on Monday. 5 more days and things should be back to normal.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Day 4 - Tuesday

Surprise! Surprise! Still no electricity in our neighborhood! It seems as through people around us (some friends and family) are getting their power back so I have hope that it will be soon. The cold front is still in effect; the highest temperature is around 83. At least we aren't battling typical Houston weather in September.

Our neighbor has been an angel. He was in contact with his corporate office in Dallas. They were nice enough to send 500 pounds of ice, some bread, and a 5000 watt generator. He is allowing us to plug in our extension cord in order to run some appliances. There isn't enough thanks I can give him for his generosity. We were able to hook up a lamp for light, a fan for a breeze, a deep freezer, and a small refrigerator. The best part....we are now able to watch tv!

The first thing we did was turn on Fox News. For the first time we were able to see the damage to Galveston first hand. Sure we had a radio to listen to, but nothing could ever prepare you for what you would see. The pictures made Ike seem real for the first time in days. It didn't feel like a dream anymore. I feel I'm being ungrateful for everything we have. I should feel blessed that we are all healthy, have a home to come to, and food to eat. Instead I'm bitching and moaning that we have no AC.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Day 3 - Monday

The cold front came in today which makes having no electricity alittle bit more bearable. We have the windows and the back door open so the breeze is coming through. At least it's not 100 degrees anymore!

Chase went to work today even though there was no power at the office. He was there for maybe 30 minutes. He then had to turn around and come back home. It's frustrating when gas is non-existent. If you do find gas then the line is at least 5 miles long. Thankfully, he does not have to return back to work until the electricity is turned back on.

While on his way home, Chase went to find a FEMA POD (point of destination for food, water, and meal). A driver was nice enough to let Chase in front of her when he missed the end of the line. He sat in line for 2 hours until a police officer pulled up beside his truck. He said that Chase had cut in line and that he would have to leave. Chase tried his hardest to explain, but the police officer didn't want to hear any excuses. He immediately got on his radio and called for a trucker to tow Chase's truck. Unwillingly, Chase left the line with no food or water.

After our trip to HEB yesterday, I'm nervous that we will run out of food, water, and ice. Ice isn't going to keep all our food frozen.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Day 2 - Pictures from the neighborhood

A street light on theground of a major intersection
A common sight....billboards blown away to nothing.
Trees pulled from the earth, grass included.
A huge tree blocking a street. It was days before it was removed.
An old gas station now being used as a car port.
The wind was so fierce that this metal sign was twisted into a DNA strand.

Day Two - Sunday

Today is supposed to be HOT and we have still have no electricity. The kids were sweating up a storm. We've been letting them run around in only their underwear which is way outside of my character. Devin didn't really like the idea of being in his undies (he was alittle shy) but Garrett and Jacob had no problem taking it off.

Our company left early (very very early) this morning. Danny couldn't sleep because he was worried about his own house. We heard from him later in the morning and they had some damage. The entire fence was blown away and the chimney was knocked down. Of coarse, there were trees knocked down but nothing that had hit his house.

Eating from an ice chest is depressing. I'm running a fever. My body aches from head to toe. Sleep deprivation is setting in. And to top things off I'm throwing up everything I eat.

The radio mentioned that our HEB would be open and running today. We needed ice desperately so we decided to brave the crowd. Surprisingly, it was worse than expected! There was a line outside that wrapped around the entire building. The store was only letting in 10 people at a time. People who were carrying purses or bags were turned away because people had already started to steal. We left without ice.

We saw the electricity trucks out in our neighborhood today. It was the greatest sight I've seen! An hour passed by and they left without restoring the power. WTF?!? My fingers are crossed that we get power tomorrow.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Aftermath - Day One

We walked outside this morning and found minimal damage to our property. Some tree branches fell in the front yard which wasn't surprising. A part of the fence in the backyard fell. It isn't anything major and I count my blessings!

We have no electricity and the house is hot and humid. It's been raining on and off but the humidity is so high that it feels about 100 degrees. There is a slight breeze coming through but not enough to keep us from sweating our asses off.

The kiddos are doing fairly well. Of coarse, they don't quite understand why we can't turn the tv or the lights on. They are playing with toys and running through the house. Back to the basics. I can't remember the last time the kids have gone one day without watching tv for at least 30 minutes. That's kinda sad!

We decided to head over to Chase's Mom's house. The drive over was awful! Damage everywhere you look and it's then that I realize how lucky we truly were. Massive trees blocked the street. Entire fences blown away revealing wind blown lawn equipment. Trees that have fallen into houses and destroying the roof. Tears came freely as we passed.

Thankfully, our entire family is safe and sound. Nobody has electricity and only minimal damage has been reported.

The Hurricane Arrives

Hurricane Ike is on its way. I've never been through a major storm and I have no idea what to expect. Rain and wind are a given, but what else?

Some friends, Mirium, Danny, and their daughter Brandy, came to stay with us. They live in Webster which is in the danger zone of Ike. It's been nice to spend time with them and catch up no matter what the circumstances are.

The lights went out alittle before midnight and thankfully we have candles, a flashlight, and a battery powered radio. Ike is supposed to hit Galveston @ 12 so we are just waiting. The kiddos are sound asleep and have no clue what's going on. I guess that is a good thing.

Danndy and Chase are being protective of all of us (which in turn is making me extremely nervous). It's one o'clock in the morning and the wind and rain has started to pick up. We are all still wide awake, too anxious to sleep. We seem to all be taking turns standing at the sliding glass door and looking into the backyard. I've been texting my brother and my Mom to make sure they are all ok. My brother's family is sitting in the bathroom.

Chase and I decided to sleep for a couple of hours before the storm gets too bad. As soon as I fell asleep, Chase jumps and puts his hand on my back. He swears he hears a tornado forming (the wind was swirling pretty badly at this point). Sleep wasn't goign to happen and we found out that Danny and Mirium were still up for the same reason.

Right now, a tree in our neighbor's yard is a major concern. It's maybe 20 feet hight and swinging with such force that it could snap at any moment. If it falls, it will go stright through our bedroom. The living room is now our "look out point". We all decide that the kid's bathroom will be the best spot for all of us in case we need to move away from the windows.

It's 3 o'clock and we are now considered in the eye. The eye is measuring 40 miles wide. We all try to catch some much needed sleep because I know the kids will be ready to rock and roll by 8 o'clock (only 5 more hours geeez).

Friday, September 12, 2008

The calm before the storm

So, here is what we are going through right now.

The clouds are coming in. Picture taken at noon.

Chase put tape on all of the windows so they wouldn't shatter.
Just SOME of the water we have.

Our can goods and munchies.

A tree branch that has already fell. Granted it's dried up, but it still fell because of the wind.
My last shower before the electricity goes out.

Getting ready for Ike

We are in the destined path of Ike and quite frankly I'm scared. We are as prepared as we think possible. Enough food, water, batteries, flashlights, etc. But how much is really enough when you have no clue what this storm will do? How long will the power actually be out? How strong will the winds be? Are we going to have damage?

It's eerily silent outside as the clouds roll in. The tv has been tuned to the news all morning and we've watched Galveston already start flooding. Right now they are predicting the storm will reach us about 12 midnight so I doubt we will be getting much sleep.

I'm alittle scattered brained right now (as you can tell by my writings). Please keep us, our family, and our friends in your prayers. I will update when possible.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Clothes shopping with a skinny chick

Today I went shopping with my cousin. My cousin is the total opposite of me; skinny (size 0), blond hair, blue eyed, beautiful, cheerleader, and popular with both men and women. It doesn't matter where we go together, she turns heads! We went to a clothing store that carried nothing over the size of extra small. Seriously, my one leg could fit in a pair of pants (and I doubt even that).

There were probably 10 people working in this store and one person actually made eye contact with me, asked if I needed help, and even offered a dressing room when I was carrying my cousin's clothes. And surprisingly it was a male salesperson who would normally look the other way! The other salespeople would side step me and go directly to my cousin to ask if she needed anything. If I tried to make eye contact they would pretend to fold clothes or if I asked for anything they pretended not to hear me.

It amazes me that people act like this to other human beings and all because I'm a fat chick who couldn't even think about wearing their name brand clothes. It's sad. It made me sad because I felt like I wasn't even worth anything.

Friday, September 5, 2008

A lesson unknown

Nessa has been chewing on herself; which is really annoying at 3 o'clock in the morning when all you hear is a lick, lick, lick and a gnaw, gnaw, gnaw. This afternoon we went to Petco and bought Bitter Yuck. You spray it on your pet in the problem areas and it is supposed to stop them from licking or biting that spot because of the bitter taste.

On a side note, Jacob has been putting his fingers in his mouth lately. He has never been a thumb or finger sucker so it's quite weird that he has picked up this habit. I'm curious if he is cutting his back teeth.

Back to the story, we are waiting in the car to pick up Garrett. The bag is in reach of Jacob, who decides it's ok to rummage through it. He kept saying that the ball was wet and it didn't click. It didn't click until he started screaming bloody murder while we pulled into the driveway. The Bitter Yuck opened in the bag and Jacob put his fingers in his mouth after touching it. Thankfully, it's not harmful just a disgusting taste.

He promised not to ever put his fingers in his mouth again. Hopefully, it works for the dog too!

1st homework project

I've never heard of homework in Kindergarten, but Garrett came home with an assignment that was due today. The teacher provided a hand drawn person and Garrett was supposed to decorate it to make it look like him. It looks amazing and he did the majority of the work. He even cut out his little outfit (using straight lines). Oh he made this crafty mom proud! I think he will follow in my footsteps and be an artsy fartsy genius.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

What do you think?

Who wants to throw popcorn in their mouths? 100 points if you make it straight in. 50 if you hit the nose to go in. You will be disqualified if you wake them up!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Meet Nessa

We have a new member of the family, our new puppy Nessa. She is a year old and is very well trained. We couldn't have asked for a better dog. She visited the vet office over the weekend and she received a clean bill of health. This 43 pound dog of love just wants to be your lap dog. Let me tell you, it does not feel good at 3 o'clock in the morning when she is standing on your chest wanting to be rubbed on.