Trending in Texas

In case you missed all of the latest updates (ack!! because I am so behind on blogging)….we have moved and we are now back in Seth’s native land of Texas. We are re-acclimating back to BBQ, Tex-Mex, mosquitoes, southern accents, very erratic weather and all other Texas joys!

I know you have all heard this but just in case you haven’t, this week Blue Bell ice cream was recalled again. Seriously folks, if you aren’t from Texas you just don’t understand. People are very worked up about this. Lucky for Blue Bell they have such loyal customers that I am pretty sure most are worked up about waiting for ice cream and there is hardly a soul ticked about the listeria. Priorities. I told Seth someone should do an independent study to see how much weight Texans lose in the absence of Blue Bell. I saw someone on Facebook who said they have never had a birthday in 35 years without it so they would postpone their celebration! Ha!

We braved a few Texas snow days and now we have moved on to  the bluebonnets!!! Here are a few pictures we snagged from a neighbor who offered mini photo sessions a few weeks ago. Our own family attempt ended abruptly with a bee sting, a screaming baby (not the bee sting victim), and a too cool for school not going to smile child. So we opted for the mini session and her results were much sweeter!  Caitlan Salerno is a great photographer for you local folks! She is super flexible and can come to you for family photos. (and she didn’t pay me a penny to say that)

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Jackson and Owen have adjusted well to their new schools and Seth has been enjoying the momentum of his new job. The boys have been busy with sports practice and MaryAnne is thriving on running the show! She is a climber and a great “helper”. She is talking lots and her favorite pastime is tracking down the boys and calling “BOYS” as she heads their way. They mostly welcome her with lots of love….unless she grabs the remote. My days are spent mostly busing kids to and from school and I am getting antsy to make some friends in our new hood!

Texas is feeling more like home! The swing set is up (our marriage survived the reassembly!) and the garden is in. Now to slow down and  let some roots begin to grow.  We are trying to get out in the cooler weather now, knowing that we are no where near prepared for the heat to come.

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We had a really nice Easter this year. We celebrated with the usual traditions of attending a special Easter service, going to an egg hunt, getting baskets of candy and delicious food. The most special thing this year for Seth and I was that both Jackson and Owen were really interested in the story of Easter. Throughout last week Seth read through the Easter story to them in pieces. They were all ears and had great questions. On Good Friday when Seth sat on their floor with the lights dim and boys heads on pillows ready for story time Seth told the boys he was going to read about Jesus dying on the cross. Owen exclaimed “ohhh I love that part of the story”. lol. Clearly he doesn’t love that Jesus died on the cross but he and Jackson were engaged and for the first time Owen was in on the action. Our church sang the song Christ is Risen, He is Risen Indeed by the Getty’s throughout the season leading up to Easter. It has become a favorite. I will attempt to add the link below…

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We hosted my brother and his family for brunch and it was SO refreshing for me to work on creative, hostessy things again after a hiatus since MaryAnne was born. I have so missed having people in our home. It was nice to try a couple of new recipes and sweep up old cheeries off the floor and wipe off crusted finger prints spruce up the table. We had lots of great food but this time around my criteria was a bit different…I made things that make great leftovers, easy prep, and kid-friendly for the most part with a few specials!  My mom always jokes that as kids we knew it was a holiday when there was kiwi in the fruit salad. To this day I love the sight of a big fruit salad with kiwi to boot.

For those interested in the menu…

Easter Brunch Menu

Mimosas for the adults and Strawberry lemonade for the kiddos

Honey Ham with Pineapple Sauce

Fruit Salad

Spinach Salad with Strawberries, Blue Cheese, Walnuts and Poppyseed Dressing {Recipe Coming Soon}

Swiss Potato Gratin

Deviled Eggs (thanks to my SIL)

Blueberry Crumb Coffee Cake  (thanks to my SIL)

~for dessert~

Cheesecake with berry sauce

Dirt dessert for kids

{you can get fancy about this but I just layered chocolate pudding with crushed Joe Joe cookies from TJ’s! Added a few gummy worms and flowers and the kids loved it!}













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Last month we had two fun visits with cousins! My sister-in-law, Christina, and my neice Grace, along with their family came through Baltimore on a trip. We jumped at the opportunity to meet up for brunch. MaryAnne was sick which was no fun but it was fun to see the babies together and to hold Grace!   Later that month my cousin Erin and her little guy Graeme came to visit.






















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Some big boy updates!

Owen is the family comedian and chimes in often with his quick wit!  He has a fierce temper but is the first to apologize and offer affection. He is growing up!  We often find ourselves laughing at his funny sayings. Here are a few from the past couple of weeks.  try correcting this one on the “right word”…he’s already written his own dictionary on these.

chicken pox=chicken nuggets


diary of a wumpy kid=wimpy kid

a couple of weeks ago I choked during lunch. I don’t know that this has ever happened to me but it was very scary! Seth was teleworking that day. I panicked and ran into the kitchen to “catch my breath” and not panic Owen but realized quickly that it wasn’t improving and I needed help. I motioned for Seth to do the Heimlich. By the time he ran around the table I was able to gasp and slowly recover. VERY SCARY!  As I recovered and caught my breath Owen said “WHOA! I did not see that coming!” Comic relief, that boy!

tatoo-this comes out with more of a British accent “tawtoo”

privacies=private parts

pork=we learned recently that Owen thought we were serving porcupine every time we had pork.



The sound track to Jackson’s life plays continuously! I can remember when he was 3 1/2 walking up our hill in Switzerland asking him what he was singing. He hadn’t even been aware that he was. That’s how is is these days too!

We are venturing into the world of the school online library and it is interesting to see his brain absorb all of these new things! He continues to love studying history and science. I am humbled by how much I forget of what I learned in school. The other day he asked me a tough math question. I told him he should save that one for dad and he said “mom, did you go to school too or just dad?” Ouch.

Jackson has been on a mission this year to dis-spell the bullying that goes on at school and is passionate about helping others. He was delighted to go to a food packaging activity at our church recently with Seth. They packed thousands of meal boxes for people in the Philippines. On their way into church Jackson whispered that he was a little concerned because it sounded like they were going to pack food for the Philistines!  He is working on his philanthropic heart at home…that arena is harder!

Jackson and Owen continue to build there brotherly bond through great big, loud fights, and simple invitations to make up and play again. They play hard and fight hard if that makes sense. They are working on their friendship and as ailing as the referring is it is nice to see those moments of sweet friendship. Discipline one and the other is the first to come to the rescue!  The picture below sums it up pretty well. The big scratch on Jackson’s face was from his warrior brother Owen in a fight. And yet, they are inseparable!


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