Sunday, January 31, 2010

Winter "storm" January 2010!

I just LOVE how the news outlets title any story about snow with such a dramatic "Winter Storm of 2010" name. Well, that's what we had this weekend! The snow began falling Friday around 5:00 and it kept falling until Saturday morning, leaving us with about 4 or so inches of beautiful white snow! This was only the second time Reilly has seen snow, so she was quite excited!! We had many things to introduce her to and couldn't wait to get started!! Since she's never been sledding before, we decided to forego the monster hill on the golfcourse that the whole rest of the neighborhood was playing on and just keep it simple with a small, gradual hill in our backyard. And she loved it...after a few times of getting used to it! It was so ridiculously cold outside though that we literally only lasted for about 15 minute increments. It's pretty sad: at least 25 minutes of preparation for abou 15 minutes of fun. Here's the countdown:

between the four of us, here are the numbers....

4 pairs of leggings/ tights
1 pair of footed pajamas
5 pairs of pants
10 pairs of socks
7 shirts
4 jackets
6 pairs of gloves
4 tobogans

...and we were still cold!!! it was the wind....crazy cold!

But, nonetheless, we had fun. Shawn and I took Reilly out for a little bit while Braxton napped and then we all bundled back up again when he woke up so he could experience a little of the fun! He really didn't seem to care to much about the snow but seemed to love being pulled in the little sled that we got!

We introduced daddy to "snow cream", something he had never even heard of, even though he grew up in the north!! What's wrong with that picture?! A good ole mix of fresh snow, whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla and YUMMMM!!! We also enjoyed some hot chocolate, snuggling with daddy in bed to keep warm while watching Madagascar, a full day long fire in the fireplace (that never really seemed to keep us warm enough b/c it was so cold outside!), snow angels for the first time, and just playing on the floor in between outside adventures. It was quite a day! Here are lots of pictures and some video clips of the sledding fun.

and here is a VIDEO of all the sledding maddness...and some classic tickle torture by big sister before we hit the snow....

Friday, January 29, 2010

Recent Happenings....

We've had a good week in the Turner household. Still getting used to Daddy's new school/studying schedule though!! Last week was pretty hard on Shawn, just getting accustomed to studying again, self-teaching, study hours, locations best suited for studying at, and dealing with a unusually busy week in our personal schedules! This week has been much better. He has discovered that the UNCC library is by far the most conducive for reading, studying, and test-taking, so that's been good! He's had two late nights there this week, but overall, doesn't feel NEAR as overwhelmed with the whole "school challenge" as last week!

We decided that it was time to switch Braxton into a "big boy" car seat b/c his little legs are just so long, they stick right over the end of the infant carrier! Instead of investing another $300 in a car seat, we went for the $99 high back booster (with a fabulous 5-point harness...such a PAIN!) for Reilly and gave Braxton her "old" seat. It's kinda sad that I can't just look in the rear-view and see him anymore in the mirror b/c the big seat blocks my view! but, I LOVE hearing him and Reilly laugh at each other the entire time we're riding in the car these days since they can now see eachother better!

Here are some random fun pics that I have taken this week of the kids.....

Reilly's entry in the "Live with Regis and Kelly" contest:

(I didn't enter Braxton this year...I'll wait until next year when he's a bit older!)

We had a "pizza picnic by the fire" night the other night:

Braxton has some "new" (from consignment!) jammies that I just think are ridiculously, I took some pics of him in them this morning:) Yes. I. Did.

Yes, the kids and I definitely went out to buy new sleds for the forecaster "Winter Storm of 2010" this weekend. I'm sure we totally jinxed ourselves and we will have no snow....but just in case!!!! :)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

imagination gone wild!

So, I've been having some trouble lately accommodating Reilly's imagination. You see, she frequently likes to pretend that all sorts of "friends" are joining us in our daily adventures and sometimes (or, a LOT of the times) her "friends" really "slow my roll", if you know what I mean! It's almost always when I'm ready to get out the door and go, Reilly is holding things up b/c "someone" needs to be buckled in the front seat or the back seat or just right before we can go. Or, another common occurrence: It's five minutes PAST time for her to go take a nap and we're pretending in the kitchen and I tell her it's time to go but am told "the cake isn't ready yet, mommy" or, "but mommy, your lunch is almost ready and we haven't eaten yet"!

So, my question is, at what point do I intervene to put an end to the schedule-interrupting-imaginary-play???!!!

2nd Annual YL Carolinas Region Leader/Committee Weekend

Shawn and I had an amazing weekend spent at the Great Wolf Lodge with over 600 other folks from the Carolinas Region of Young Life. This was the 2nd annual gathering of all leaders and committee members from the 25 different YL areas that make up the Carolinas Region. It was such a sweet time to really get to hang out and love on the missionaries (YL Leaders) that go into the high schools in our area and reach kids for Christ. We are so blessed to be a part of such an incredible organization that makes it a priority to do this like this: coming together to worship, learn, be challenged by God's Word, PRAY, and play together as a family. This year I felt like the bar was raised up a notch in regards to the programming. There was, of course, in YL fashion, a super hilarious run-on that kept us all laughing throughout the weekend. We were SO blessed to be lead in worship by none other than Ed Cash ( How powerful it was to be in a giant room with that many people, singing with such passion! We also had such a privilege to hear teaching from Steve Gardner, the regional area director. This year, the topic for the weekend was "joy": having joy in your personal life, ministry life, and in community. Steve is such an awesome speaker! There were definitely a few nuggets that I wrote down (well, more than a few, but I will just share a few with you!) that I want to hold on to....

Night one, we were challenged to FULLY grasp the fact that the God of the universe is madly in love with each of us. Steve said, "You know, deep down in my heart, I've thought that if the time ever came I would probably die for someone else. You know, if a building is on fire, I'd probably go in there to save someone else or I would probably jump in front of a bullet to save someone. But you know what, God didn't do that. He didn't die for me. He sent His SON to do that." wow. From the perspective of being a parent, I couldn't even imagine or fathom the thought of putting Braxton in a burning building if it meant saving someone else or throwing him in front of a bullet to save another person. But that's EXACTLY what God did when He sent Jesus to die for ME.

Last night, Steve made TWO points that I wrote down and want to keep bringing myself back to: 1. Is my heart more or less sensitive to lost people than it was last year?
2. Am I living the life that I am inviting others to live??

The thing that is absolutely amazing about the community of Young Life (leaders and committee) is that when we all get together, there is always some CRAZY fun to be had! After worshipping and praising and hearing the message, we all played together...for a long time....and had LOTS of fun...until almost midnight! If I could just explain what it is like to watch a group of people go from holding their hands up in praise to punching their fists in the air while jumping up and down to "Jump Around" by House of Pain just one hour later during a ridiculously out of control 80's dance party!!! I did take some pictures, but NOTHING will do it justice. Wow...can't WAIT for next year!

the current Greater Lake Norman area leaders:
playing some really silly game about sliding in your seat....I have no clue who comes up with these games!

the totally spontaneous 80's dance party...

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

10 months old....already!

Braxton will be 10 months old in just a couple days and I feel like he is all the sudden doing so many new things!! First of all, he continues to be the MOST snuggly, cuddly, lovey baby EVER! I seriously have never held a baby that likes to cuddle SO much! And trust me...I just eat it up:) He has recently started clapping and does it all the time! He is all the sudden pulling up on everything and sometimes pulls all the way to standing. He loves to walk with two hands held and gets really excited when walking towards someone! He has just started eating "real" yogurt and seems to really like it. He LOVES cheese and smiles and kicks his legs when he sees it! He still says "dada" all the time, although I have heard him say "mama" a few times. He still in totally in love with Reilly and laughs all the time at her. He's getting so big, but yet he's still a skiny little guy!! He's got two bottom teeth right now and one of the top middle teeth seems to be making it's way through now. Here are some recent pics...

yes his eyes are closed, but look at those two pearly whites!


Last weekend we had a very VERY special guest at our house. My grandmother decided to come enter "our world" for a change. With the care that my grandfather has required over the past few years while battling Alzheimers, there has really never been an opportunity for Memama to come to our house and just "be"--nobody to take care of, nobody to cook for or entertain, nobody pulling her to leave and get back home. Now that Mymike is in a nursing home, she has a bit more freedom and will hopefully have MANY more chances to come to Charlotte to enter our world and be with her GREAT-grandchildren. I feel sooo blessed to have such a YOUNG and hip grandmother and it is beyond special that my children are actually getting the chance to develop a relationship and tons of memories with their great-grandmother. We had a BLAST with Memama and kept her pretty busy the whole 48 hours she was here!!! Here's what we did:

  • played in the "box house"
  • read books and magazines
  • looked at scrapbooks
  • played with Braxton on the floor
  • had dinner at On The Boarder (enjoyed fajitas and sopapillas...the ONLY way to "do" OTB!)
  • watched Mickey Mouse Clubhouse
  • had Memama help with jammies and bedtime routines!
  • went to OUR church
  • baked banana bread
  • explored the Great Wolf Lodge (just for fun!)
  • got overwhelmed by IKEA
  • played dominoes and memory match
  • painted on the art easel!
  • had ice cream at Coldstone Creamery!
  • played outside and went on a nature walk
  • and finished out our visit with a lunch date at none other than...Chick-Fil-A (Memama's FIRST time!)

We had an AWESOME time Memama and can't WAIT for you to come back!!!! Love you!