Sunday, January 31, 2010

He's 8 Months Old!!

It is hard to believe that I have had this precious boy in my life for 8 months ~ that's 243 days to be exact. He is the smiliest, happiest, sweetest boy I have ever seen. He loves to smile at everyone....the dog, the UPS Delivery Man (who now knows Bubba), the grocery store clerk...there isn't anyone that can't make him smile!

Some of his favorites at 8 months? It makes him so happy to see his Daddy come home from work. He loves to go outside and gets quite miffed when I tease him in the morning as we wave bye-bye to his brother & sister. He loves to play on the floor with his basket of toys- will dive right in and take all of them out. He is getting quite proficient at the scoot and works hard to get to the cold tile- he likes to suck on it- yuck, I know!! (I am mopping frequently!!) He eats very well and is starting to show a preference to the fruit over the veggies.

                And I almost forgot!!! His first tooth showed up this week- man, kid, can you please stop growing so fast???
Here's the sweet boy with some belly laughs!

He is still struggling with crawling. He wants to move so bad that he has perfected a twist-in-a-circle-then-stretch move that usually works to get him where he wants to go. Here he is working it this week. He has a mean throw-myself-forward-and-plop too.

I caught him in some great moments this month:

Oh sweet boy!  I have loved every second of these past 243 days you have been with us!!

Friday, January 29, 2010

It's That Time of Year!!

           Yay!!  Girl Scout Cookie time!!  Who doesn't enjoy a Thin Mint or Peanut Butter Pattie???  Especially in January where we have all made resolutions to lost weight???  It is Sissy's third year selling them and she really enjoys setting a goal and getting out there and selling.  But this year, she set an almost impossible goal.  One that at first I thought, "Great!  No Problem!!  We can sell these.  We have a booth at Walmart, they'll be flyin off the shelves!!"  
         Not so.  Her goal is to sell over 520 boxes.  Yes, you heard me.  520 boxes.  That is over 10,400 cookies.  What was I thinking????
         So I hit up my Bunco group, sent an email to my family, made hubby take the form to work, had her ask at her orthodontist office (I mean we're paying $$$$ for braces, can't they buy a $3.50 box?), and scoured the neighborhood with the 50 other girl scouts we have living here.  That sold a significant quantity.  All that we have left are the booths.  
        You know, the cute girls asking oh-so-politely, "Would you like to buy some girl scout cookies?"  I know I used to dodge them cause I never had cash on me- who knew that'd take a check???  But now, we are counting on our booths to get the bulk of our sales.  
         And oh how much fun these have been.  I mistakenly thought that NO ONE would be able to pass up these cuties and would be buying us out in an hour.  Not so. We have everything from the "No thanks!  I'm on a diet!" to being completely ignored.  How can you ignore my sweet girl?  
         And it is all about location- Blockbuster Video?  Not bad because we had the grocery store traffic from next door.  Walmart on a Sunday afternoon?  Not as great as we thought- most people "had bought cookies inside".  Yeah right, and you didn't see us as you went inside to shop??  
        And the place that made us laugh the most - the corner gas station where most were buying their 12 pack of Natural Light and their lottery tickets and had no interest in our cookies.  We had several interesting characters and what surprised us the most is the sweet man who told us "no thanks" as he walked to his truck to scratch off his lottery ticket.  Afterwards, he went back inside the store and came out with cash (and more lottery tickets) and gave us a $5 and walked away with out saying anything.  Sissy and I looked at each other & smiled - he must have won and wanted to share his good fortune with us.  That made our day.
          But for every ignore we get, we do have sweet folks who buy some cookies.  The sweet grandpa who tells us to "keep our change".  The busy mom who lets her 5 year old choose a box.  The teenagers who spend their allowance on 3 boxes of thin mints.  We are also getting donations to send cookies to troops overseas and many people are more willing to give us their spare change for that than they are to buy a box.  And it's these interactions that teach our girls all the values they learn from selling cookes...confidence, goal setting, and hard work. 
          But seriously Sis, is it gonna take 525 boxes to learn this???

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A New Look: Darling Memories

            I am so excited to share with you all my new website for my business, Darling Memories:

Darling Memories

           If you recall, Darling Memories creates darling DVD photo slideshows for every occasion......80th birthdays, 50th wedding anniversaries, baby's first year of life, wedding rehearsal dinners, graduating high school seniors, family reunions, vacations, and so on.  I have been blessed to have created a few before Christmas and am now attempting to go at it in full force.
          Please take a look at my site, tell me what you think, and keep me in mind if you have any fun occasions coming up.  The best form of "advertising" is word of mouth from friends, so pass my info along to anyone you think might be interested!

          Also, I'd like to mention my dear friend, Jessica, who did an amazing job with the Darling Memories website, as well as this blog for the Texas Darlings.  You can find her at The Frilly Coconut.  She is affordable and her designs are unique.  Not to mention, she is incredibly reasonable and so easy to work with!!  Go and visit her site- she has an amazing blog design giveaway going on right now!

The Frilly Coconut

       Thank you for all of your love & support in my new business venture- I am so excited to have found something I love to do!!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Almost There

            Well folks- my Bubba Boy is officially 8 months old.  I know I say this every month...but where does the time go??  I am so in love with this little guy, it hardly seems like we have had him for 8 months now!!
            We have hit every major milestone right on track - rolling over at 4 months, eating solids at 6 months.  But there is one hurdle our Bubba can't seem to get over yet- crawling.  And believe me, we are OK with that one.  Having 2 older kids, we know what happens when these kiddos get mobile.  He is trying so hard.  He gets up on all fours.  He rocks back and forth.  He gets frustrated.  He yelps at us.  He  crashes to the ground.  In the meantime, he has perfected the backward schooch.  Very well.
             Enjoy his recent frustration as he tried to get a toy.  And yes, he expressed every word, or so I interpreted.

"ok, how can I get this?"

"i got it, I just rock a little."

"nope.  rocking just makes me tumble over."

"ugh.  if only i could reach it."

"let's try it again."

"al-mo-st there."

"i'm gonna get it!"

"AHHH.  momma can you just give me the toy!"

"fine.  I'll just chew on this tag over here."

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Big Race Day

            Well it's here!  Brody's big race day at the Cub Scouts' Pinewood Derby.  He & his Daddy worked hard on their car to get it ready to race.  Hours and hours of carving, sanding, gluing, painting....... right Matt? Well, maybe not that much time.  But after seeing some of the cars "made" by these 1st & 2nd grade boys, you'd think they spent months on them.  I am all about the bonding that occurs between the boy & his dad over the pinewood car, but seriously, had you seen some of these cars, you'd know that the boys were given very little to do to make it.  Some of these dads got WAY too into it for me.
            How did we do?  Not bad for his first year:

Look at all the fancy cars made by first grade boys....yeah right.

ours was the cammo- Brody's choice

ready to race

and we're ahead!!


proud boy!

gotta love it!

2010 Pinewood Derby from Rebecca Darling on Vimeo.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Baby Dedication

          Bubba Boy was dedicated at church today.  At our church, we dedicate our babies to God that we will raise them in a Christian home, provide them with a nurturing, loving, and caring life, and teach them all about God and his son Jesus Christ so that one day, they can make the choice to accept Jesus into their heart and life.  I was reminded today how precious our children are and what an amazing gift from God.

Every good and perfect gift comes from above.
                                                      James 1:17

                God gives us our children- and the most important job we have is to raise them, to nurture, them, to guide them, to become sensible, strong, Christian men & women.  We have a tremendous job.  And I for one feel privileged to know that God entrusted these 3 tiny souls with me & Matt.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Top 6 of DW: Smile!

            Let's face it.  How can you NOT have a great time at the "world's happiest place?"  Even the grumpiest of grumps will smile when he is there.  And that is what happened to us.  We found ourselves smiling, and laughing, and playing, and having fun spending time with one another.  Our precious little family (minus one sweet baby,of course).

Our Number One Greatest Memory of Disney World:

All the Smiles!

     Take a few minutes to watch all the smiles we had on our trip.  I promise you, it is worth it:

The Darlings Disney Trip from Rebecca Darling on Vimeo.

Top 6 of Disney World

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Yes! I Finally Beat You!!

           Friendly, healthy competition is alive and well in this house.  That is between my hubby & myself.  We love to compete- Who won the game of Sequence?  Who can search for Chuy's phone number on the iPhone faster?  Who can get to the comfy chair in the media room the quickest?  Seriously y'all.  It is ridiculous.
           But I am a part of this madness and here I go feeding more into it......

          On the last day of 2009, we decided to have a fun family day and our middle son asked if we could go bowling?  Sure.  I'm the first to admit that I am awful at bowling- I can never choose the right ball or what arrow on the floor to look at when throwing the ball....  so I typically go into it to have fun.  And fun was what we had:

    Until this score popped up:

     Can you see it???  It's my proof of the first game I ever won at bowling!!!  Now if you ask Matt he'll try to make a bunch of the bumpers were on for the kids......I say a wins a win!!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Top 6 of DW: Don't Stick Yourself

            Webster's dictionary defines collection as an accumulation of objects gathered for a study, comparison, or exhibition.  Thanks to my mom for getting me started, I have been "accumulating" Department 56 houses for over 10 years, but I only get to "exhibit" them at Christmas time.  My daughter "accumulates" Webkinz (30+) and they are on "exhibit" in a pile in the corner of her room.  lovely.  And my son "accumulates" garbage that he finds when we go shopping (unbeknownst to his mother) and it is on "exhibit" under his bed.  You must see it.  Really, it is the loveliest collection of price tags, small hangers, and plastic do-dads you have ever seen.
           On our recent trip to Disney we started a new "accumulation".  The trip started innocently enough.  We had always seen people with lanyards covered with pins around their neck and never questioned it.  Until the 3rd day we were there and Sissy sat next to a girl on the bus who explained every one of her pins to her.  That is where the bug hit.
          Sis said she really wanted one and I murmured ok (and gave her the good ole' Mommy-ignore). "Let's go get fast-passes to Toy Story Mania!"  But it was while waiting in line for Aerosmith's Rock-N-Roller Coaster that I relented.  Sort of.
         Sis didn't want to ride.  Ok, it was much more dramatic than that, but (don't flame our parenting skills here) we knew she would LOVE this ride.  All her life we have had to, ahem, force her to try things that we knew she would love to do...and she always did love it.   So of course we were forcing her to try this ride.  And by forcing, I mean bribing (such a dirty little word, isn't it?)  So we bribed our daughter to ride the coaster for a lanyard and 2 pins.  Shame on us.  Like you never bribed your kids. shush.
          It started with 2 little pins and then we bought the "special anniversary pin" for a $1 more.  And then we were on a hunt to get the perfect pin from each park.  Guess which one she picked from Hollywood Studios?
Can ya give us a big pat on our backs for introducing Sis to her favorite ride of the week?

      Soon after Sis started collecting, Brody wanted in on the action.  We didn't have to bribe him to get his though.  That kid is a thrill-seeker.   His favorite pin?

His all-time favorite ride

        After the 5th day we were there, we learned something unique about these pins.  The whole concept was started with trading in mind.  Huh?  I don't want to trade the $$$ pin that took 2 hours for my daughter to pick out.  No way.  Until we got smart.  Sort of.
       Remember those cheap anniversary pins?  We grabbed a handful of those and started trading.  You can trade with anyone who has pins.  But Cast Members (that "employee" in Disney lingo) have pins that are to be traded on purpose.  You can ask any CM to trade with you and unless they have it already, they have to trade you.  Pretty cool huh?
      The las few days we hunted...and I mean hunted... for 1 specific pin.  An "M" for Sissy's name.  And guess where we found it?  The gift shop at our hotel, of course.

the cast member who graciously gave her his "M"

        The last day was spent looking for the perfect pins to trade.  Sissy found some great Mickey head pins:
   do you see the tiny mickey heads on them...more "Hidden Mickeys"

         And Brody found some he really liked too:

Mom's Favorite

         So, of course this wound up being an expensive way to commemorate our trip, but we had a blast finding all the right pins.  We happened to get a bit of advice for future reference too.  Before going to the parks, buy some pins on eBay and then you'll have ones to trade with for a fraction of the price.  They were right.  I just found the M pin for $.99.  figures.

       Have you been keeping up?  We have one more Top 6 of Disney World to reveal and plan on doing it Wednesday.  Please come back to see our favorite thing about our trip to Disney World!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Amazing What A Little Photoshoppin' Will Do For You.

            I have been dabbling in photography this week.  Everyday I have had the camera out and I have been shooting like crazy (see, I am even using photography lingo).  I have one small problem: I am not good at photography.  I want all these amazing memories that we are creating as a family to be captured by some amazing photographs.   But my photos are mediocre at best.   Every once and awhile I will grab a good shot, but the majority of time, no.
            After cruzin around the www this week, I have learned something pretty cool.  Bt it is a big secret, so don't tell anyone ok?  Majority of "amazing photos" have been "photoshopped".  Huh?  You mean they don't just come out of the camera amazing??  Some do, but not all.  Therefore,  I now need to learn how to take better pictures AND how to photoshop them?  Great, that makes it so much easier.....
           I also have a fantastic camera.  I have had it for 1 1/2 years and the mode I mainly shoot on is "P".  P is for Program (automatic), or Pitiful.  The Best Buy salesman suggested that.  Nice.  I am taking advice from the guy who is probably NOT a professional photographer.  So, my goal this year is to learn what an F stop is , what Aperture means,  and what bokah is (I learned that this week- everything is fuzzy with the exception on one thing!  Yay for me!).
           So, to force myself to learn my camera I have joined a little meme in the blog world- Project 365. I am going to attempt to take a picture each day and post it.  My goal is to learn all the different modes I can shoot in and get better pics of my babies and the world around us.  Plus I think it will be fun to capture everyday life each day.  Let me say upfront that taking 365 pictures for a full year will be a BIG undertaking and I truly hope I do not fizzle out mid-February.  Will you check in with me every once and a while and give me a little encouragement??  Thanks my friends!  My newest blog can be found in my sidebar or here: The Darling 365 Project

          Today I did a little magic with Photoshop...ok not THE Photoshop, it was iPhoto and it worked.  Tell me if you can see a difference:

With the flash..yuck- I hate the artificial light

no flash-too light & fuzzy for me

no flash & photoshopped

sweet Bubba

my favorite shot

       Amazing what a little computer program can do.  Maybe I will get the hang of this after all.

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