Sunday, January 30, 2011

A Little Surprise Trip

I was given a generous gift and am able to currently be in SW Florida! About a week and a half ago I bought a ticket (at a ridiculously cheap rate) to make a surprise trip to see my brother and SIL. Ok, they knew I was coming, but it still was a surprise when I called and said "hey, I think I'd like to see you January 28-30th!"
I'll post more pictures post-trip, but here are a few. The first airport we were in had rocking chairs for people to sit in. I took full advantage of that. TSA wasn't a nightmare (although I was stopped because of the amount of breastmilk I was toting, but after testing it I was fine) and people were incredibly helpful.
About 12:00am we met up with Aunt Danielle and Uncle Nathan. This baby is a GREAT traveler.
She slept in was up bright and early after her late night flight. We enjoyed some morning rays before breakfast.
Someone is enjoying quite a but of attention. And I am trying to enjoy every minute and relax! I'll be home tomorrow morning with a full-daycare. :o)

Thursday, January 27, 2011


I took my new header picture tonight while the kiddos were in the tub. Sloppy Joes were a big hit for everyone...but a big mess for me.

I have a decision to make though. Should I keep it or try for a different one? I just don't know if Snug is too...old. For a tub picture. If he was in the pool I wouldn't even hesitate. But he's not.
Rosebud LOVES taking a bath. And until recently I had to take one with her because she is so slippery and adventurous. She has been trying to crawl around the tub. But now she is staying on her bum in the tub. Ok, taking a bath with two big boys leaves little wiggle room, but still.
And Rosebud really loves to watch Little Monkey Man. Cause...well...he's entertaining.
And if I had time tonight, I would have loved to have edited this picture. Her eyes!
So. As a header. Do I Keep? Ditch?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Mr. Handsome

This picture was taken of Snug when he was....2 1/2. It looks like he was so much older. My husband said it looked like he was about ten. I don't even want to think about him being ten!!!
He's growing up way too fast and he looks just like his daddy. Mr. Handsome.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


I don't feel like I blog about a HUGE part of our lives very much. Some of you may think that I blog about it too much. Today's post is about my job. So if you are the latter, come back tomorrow.

I tell my moms that I sit for that I will do my best to treat their kids like they are my own (ok, within reason. I don't spank their kids and there are some places in our house that are off limits to non-dwellers). And I strive to do that everyday.

I got a new baby today. She is just shy of 3 months old. We had a great day with her (despite some jealousy/confusion on Rosebud's end and lack of napping on her end) and will get to enjoy her 1-2 days a week. I have to remember how young she is as she is within 2 pounds and an inch or so of Rosebud. Note to self: Does not sit up, entertain self with toys, or crawl away from pestering boys. Also. I don't know how moms of twins do it. Cause 2 babies is HARD.

Although Snug and Little M go to a pre-k class twice a week, and although I have no intentions at this time to formally homeschool my kids, I do feel that home is their first school. And I do "homeschool" everyone in this house who are over the age of 3 and willing. I love doing discovery projects with the kids based on questions or observations they have.

Lately we've had a good dose of snow, and have been talking about/reading about/discovering new things about it. Yesterday we put on our science hats (not literally) and got busy.
I sent the big boys outside with the plastic trays we use for grilling out. They are always wanting to eat the snow outside and I'm always telling them not to. This experiment was "why not?". They made the hypothesis ahead of time that they shouldn't eat snow off the ground because it might get dirt in it. But the falling snow they thought was perfectly great.

One stood and collected falling flakes, one scooped from the ground.
I made up a sheet for the kids to put their names on (to feel nice and official) and then I recorded their answers to the questions.

They were very serious about the task.

Both boys thought that the snow from the ground would contain some dirt when it melted, but they weren't sure if the falling snow would be clean or not. They also thought all of the dirt would come from the actual ground itself.

They were surprised about all the little specks of dirt left as the snow melted-both in the snow from the ground and the snow that they caught as it fell. It paved the way to talking about how snowflakes are formed, pollution in our air, and why on earth there were so many bubbles in the snow as it melted.

While we do stories, experiments, field trips, library hour, and playdates, every day is not full of educational activities that inspire them to learn and create. There are days that we barely survive and they watch a full two hour movie instead of their usual 30 minutes. Sometimes I lose my temper. I don't always cook nutritious meals. Sometimes we have mac and cheese. But I do try to make this a home-like environment where they feel loved and cared for while their parents are away. Because that is what I would want for my kids.

Sometimes things just make me laugh. After writing this post I went over and read Amanda's blog and from something she posted discovered this. Enjoy (read to the end to see why I was laughing)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Our Valentine

Pop Heart Valentine's Day 5x7 folded card
Modern greeting cards and party invitations by Shutterfly.
View the entire collection of cards.

Saturday, January 22, 2011


These pictures are some "leftovers" if you will. Pictures that were never posted...but that I really like. They are all from December, but hey...better late than never, right? Have a great weekend, stay warm.
One of the last pictures taken with his hair!
Inspired by CopMama. Hers is better, but this was my try.
A bath in the sink.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Little Plug

I've mentioned before that I volunteer for the summer camp where I grew up. In the summer (and throughout the winter months as well) a friend of mine and I train teenage girls to be counselors. The program is called CILT (Campers In Leadership Training) and the programs is rigorous.

The girls learn how to care for and lead children, as well as how to teach a specialization (canoeing, horsemanship, crafts, swimming, riflery, etc). But there is so much more than that. They are taught how to best show campers the love of Christ, how to lead a camper to Christ if the child shows that desire, and how to minister to kids coming from many difficult situations. They also learn how to do the hard stuff like report if a child has been abused, perform CPR and first aide, and use appropriate discipline if the need arises.

This camp has meant so much to me. Working there with three small children is not easy, and I am blessed to have my kids staying within an hour from the camp with family members during my two week stay. This may be my last summer being the CILT instructor, something that both saddens and relieves me. I know it will be forever closing a huge chapter in my life, but I also know that it is stressful to have mommy gone for 2 weeks plus multiple weekends during the year.

I became a believer at a different camp, but this one definitely has helped me to grow in the Lord and the CILT program (I went through it as a teenager) really shaped who I am today.

I got an e-mail today from a former CILT and she is doing (with camp board permission and all of the copyright things are also taken care of) an album of camp music. I am so excited about this project. At our camp we SING. A lot. Music and worship out in the woods, around a campfire, and following each meal is a big part of who we are as a camp. I wanted to share this link with you, not only because I love camp so much, but also because I am so proud of the kids young men and women featured in it. Almost all of them have been my campers, CILTS, or staff kids (as in they were preschoolers and I watched them while their moms worked!). I am so thankful that they are serving the Lord back at camp as staff members and that SuAnn has taken this project on.

New Look

There's a new boy at our house.
He looks familiar.
Do you know this boy?

Friday, January 14, 2011

9 Months Young

9 months!
Six teeth.
15 lbs, 11 oz.
25 7/8 inches.

Pulls to a stand.
Goes from a sit to her belly and then back to a sit.
Waves "bye bye".
Crawls backwards well, is exploring the idea of crawling forwards without too many faceplants.

Can't believe she's 9 months old.
Can you?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

No Bicycles In Bethlehem.

Way back when Snug was potty training a college friend of mine had a meme called "Friday Funny Pages". Her idea was that on Fridays moms could post the funny things their kids had done/said in the past week. Although she doesn't still do it I'm participating. By myself. On a Thursday (Here are my previous participations)

Little Monkey Man has been doing SOOO good with potty training. I take zero credit as it was HIS idea to start using the potty, and then with a little help from me he was completely trained within a week. I'm talking overnight, naps, everything. I'm not saying he never has an accident. But I am saying the extra pair of underwear/jeans/wetbag that has been in his little backpack that always leaves the house with us hasn't been replaced in over a week. Very happy mama. Anywho. He calls the toilet paper "tape". I can't convince him to call it toilet paper. It is "tape."

Along with re-naming the toilet paper, he cannot cannot get the concept of "cold". Whenever he gets cold, he cries "WAAAARRRRRMMMM". We have literally been working on this word for a couple of months. He cannot get the word "cold" into his vocabulary.

Some of LMM's vocabulary mix ups are because of his speech apraxia. While that isn't exactly a funny thing (ok, it is quite a bit of work to tell you the truth) it does lead to some funny things, like I mentioned above. And some downright puzzling ones. We are weaning him off of getting a Skittle after he uses the toilet. If at all possible we just distract him so he forgets and we keep moving with life. When he does remember and I can distract him he calls it "Canny Cane". But you know what he calls actual candy canes ? "Elmos".

I do preschool with my Draycare kids who are 3 and over. This week we did the letter "S" and I made up a stupid song about how a sneaky snake slithered up my rake or something to that effect to sing in the van with those who had to take the drive to and from preschool pick-ups (for those who attend preschool). On the way home, we were singing it again and Snug announced that he had learned a sneaky song at school. I was a little curious about them singing a sneaky song in preschool. He began to sing "Sneaky first the kingdom of God...and His righteousness..." I almost drove off the road. It was so funny.

The other night I was reading to Little Monkey and he was laying on top of me looking at the pictures as we laid on the couch. All of a sudden he sat up, turned over, patted my chest and announced "MILK!". Then he laid back down so I could resume reading. Oh dear.

And finally, again in the van on the way home from...somewhere this week, Snug was not happy about sitting in "traffic*". I explained that even though we were not going very fast, it was still faster than how it would be if there were no cars. I asked him what people did before cars were invented, and he had no clue. I asked him how we'd get places if we didn't have a car and he ended up coming up with a bike. I was trying to get him to realize that way back when people had to walk or ride horses. I asked him how Mary and Joseph got to Bethlehem thinking he'd come up with an answer along the lines of "a donkey". He got all indignant and said "MOM There were no bicycles in Bethlehem!!!"

Maybe you have to be here. But some things they do just are really funny.

*It always makes me laugh when I think of what we call traffic here. 90% of the time our "traffic" was normal driving where I grew up.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

AAARRRGGGG (No, I am not a pirate)

I would just like to do a huge THANK YOU MR. COMPUTER....aka my brother Nate.



I could not.

Use my e-mails.

(I could read, not reply).



I could not.

Get into Blogger.

I'm seriously thinking about WordPress.

However, Mr. Computer saved the day. Again.

Mr. Computer spent another two hours or so working on my computer.

Know how?

He took control.


He literally got INTO my computer (he lives more than 24 hours away by car).


It was SUPER weird to see my mouse clicking and moving and doing things. Without ever moving.

Super weird.

He could see my screen, my e-mail, my blog, my documents. EVERYTHING.

He got rid of Internet Explorer.

He put in Google Chrome.

And Firefox.

He deleted cookies.

I ate cookies.

He said I also had "cache" problems (pronounced "cash").

I already knew I had cash's why we have a tight budget!

That was a joke.

But he did a whole bunch of very spiffy things.

And now my computer works. Mostly.

He and I are going to work on exporting (?) my blog to another location.

Cause I can't take this.


Thank you Mr. Computer.

And BTW.

I emptied my 356 inbox.

You're Welcome.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

In The Line Of Duty

Officer Hopper was killed in the line of duty January 1, 2011. She was ambushed when responding to a complaint at a trailer park in what seemed to be a routine call. A man was shooting a gun at his neighbors (typical New Year's Day stuff) and they called 911. I'm sure many of you heard about this on the news as it was a national headline.

She did not work for my husband's department, rather one that is even in a different county. However, we knew several people, including officers, who knew/knew of her.

But when a fellow officer is killed, it doesn't matter if you knew them or not. Officers from around the country and even Canada came to pay their respects. My husband was in attendance Friday. He took some pictures on his cell phone.
These are the patrol cars, the furthest coming from LAPD parked and ready to be part of the processional. The funeral started an hour late because so many people were there. The church was packed, and two gymnasiums were filled with people standing shoulder to shoulder viewing video screens. Along with friends and family, thousands of police officers were there. There were 2,000 patrol cars with 2-4 officers per car. I know her family probably barely remembers the events of the day. But her department knows the support shown, and they need it as much as the family.
People lined the streets and the schools let out early so the children could stand along the route and pay their respects. The news coverage showed the incredible respect people had for this officer and her department.
Here is the good news. Yes, there can be good news even in this tragedy. Along with being a wife and mother of two boys, she was herself a child of God. She was a known believer and the gospel was shared openly at her funeral. Thousands of people both in attendance and via the media heard the Good News. Please pray for her family and the department as this is such a hard time for them. But rejoice with me that she is in heaven, and that through her life others may come to know Him.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

OK. I know these pictures are quite tardy. However, our family computer won't let me log in (again) to blogger and I am using my photo editing computer that is close to seven years old. It is SLOW. All I ever use it for editing! Each picture takes at least 5 minutes to upload, and don't you dare try to do two at a time. No idea what is going on. So frustrating. But I am glad to get to share Christmas pictures. They are in no particular order. They are just lucky to be posted!
Christmas morning under the tree. Rosebud's first Christmas. So exciting!
Each boy got a pair of gardening gloves. I want them to help in our garden this spring, and figure some kid-friendly equipment couldn't hurt! Little Monkey Man, whose real name is just so sweet and fitting of him...I just want to use it but I am trying to protect their identities, had a great time. He especially loved everything his brother got. We really could have switched everything and neither boy would have known or cared!

Snug was elated to open stockings. At least this year I remembered to wrap his :O) He got some normal useful things, but also some Matchbox "Cars" cars. And a little washcloth that was really small and then when you put it in the bathtub it gets big. It has Diego on it, and he told his Sunday School teacher the next day it was his favorite present. Really? He got a bike for heaven's sake! (Yes, I know he got a bike for his birthday too...but it was an old one that we tried to restore, and the training wheels broke. We searched online and in stores for replacements as they are a special size. New ones were $20 not including shipping and handling. New bike $29 Black Friday. It was an easy decesion.)

We Skyped with my brother and SIL who live in Florida for a couple of minutes. They watched the kids each open a gift and then the boys modeled their super hero outfits.

Post-afternoon nap Rosebud was all smiles and ready to pose! See her top tooth?

Although she didn't actually open any gifts...and in all truth opened her doll and then went to take her morning nap...she sure was curious about what was under the tree! She got 2 outfits, her doll, and an ornament.

This is the dolly that #1 and I gave Rosebud. It came with a "sling" for babywearing, which she won't be getting for quite awhile.

This is a picture of her Christmas Eve. She is wearing the Christmas dress my mom made for me my first Christmas. And another glimpse of top teeth.

Sorry this took SO long to do. Sorry I am so frustrated :O) Thanks for enjoying our Christmas pictures.

**When I try to log into my blog on our family computer, I get the message:

Internet Explorer cannot dsplay the webpage
What you can try:
Diagnose connection Problems

I can get anywhere but to Blogger-no connection problems. Any suggestions?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

My Absence Excuse Note...

Jenney Dray was absent from blogging since December 23, 2010 for the following reason:

G Mail and Blogger had a conspiracy and kicked me out. No seriously. I couldn't get in. I couldn't comment on anyone else's blog. I couldn't put up posts. For awhile, I couldn't even get into my e-mail.

My brother worked with me on the phone for almost an hour one evening. I was about in tears. I think he wanted to shoot me but he was very patient nonetheless (he is Mr. Computer and really really good at all things electronic. I am not). This being after he was on Skype with me for nearly 2.5 hours Christmas Day night helping me figure out/download/update everything so I could get the pictures off of my new camera. Cause I was 100% sure I had lost every last one of Rosebud's 1st Christmas pictures-I didn't. Thank you Mr. Computer.

SOOOOO Finally the "Your computer is unable to locate this webpage" message is gone. I have a new e-mail associated with my blog (apparently my old e-mail domain now had a blog feature so it thought I had 2 blogs with the same e-mail or some dumb thing) and my old e-mail is back to working again. I didn't do anything different tonight. I have tried EXACTLY what I did tonight at least 2 times a day for the past week (once my brother figured out I had to get another G-Mail account). But tonight it worked.

I will post some Christmas pictures, update you all on life, and start leaving comments on your blogs again. But my hubby got home from work early tonight, a local officer was killed in a shooting this week, and he and I have the opportunity to spend some alone time together for the first time in a long time. Think I better hang with him.

Glad to be back.