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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

third time's a charm

It's been said that good things come in THREES.  Well, maybe I made that up but I happen to believe it's true.  THREES are everywhere.
There were THREE pigs and THREE bears.
THREE stooges and THREE musketeers.
THREE's Company.
THREE men [and a Baby].
THREE answer options [Yes, Maybe, No].
THREE strikes.
THREE bulbs on a traffic light [American].
And so forth.

I have done some research-aka Googled-and have learned that there are a lot of rules regarding THREES.  According to Wikipedia a 'Rule of Three' may refer to:
  • Rule of THREE (aviation), a rule of descent in aviation
  • Rule of THREE (C++ programming), a rule of thumb about class method definitions [Emily]
  • Rule of THREE (statistics), for calculating a confidence limit when no events have been observed
  • Rule of THIRDS, a compositional rule of thumb in photography
  • Rule of THIRDS (diving), a rule of thumb for scuba divers


With all of these rules is does not surprise me to any degree that my parents had THREE kids; they are never ones to break any rules.  And, following in their footsteps, we THREE little angels do our best to follow suit.

Let's see what I can scrounge up...
  • Let's see, each one of us busted our chins in various pool accidents at the age of 3.5.
  • The second letters of our first names are the first THREE letters of the alphabet group 'L-M-N-O-P' eLlen, eMily, aNdrew.  You just never know what you might learn here :)
  • We were all three born in Louisiana.
  • We have all [or will soon] subjected our family to THREE graduation ceremonies each.
  • We all THREE graduated in 2009 from Grad School, College, and High School.  (I wanted to put a link to my blog post about that but I see that I wasn't blogging then :/)
  • And now, in the year 2013, we have all THREE received fairly significant bands of precious metals:  Engagement ring, Engagement ring, & Aggie ring.  As I'm writing this I just realized that our rings fit our familiar alpha-rhythm of EEA or Ellen, Emily, & Andrew.  I would call that coincidence but knowing our parents they probably planned that too.  Trust me, it is entirely possible with those two.

Jeff, Emily, and I all drove to College Station to go with Andrew to pick up his Aggie Ring.  This is a big deal at TAMU; a deal so big that I still don't quite understand.  People tell me it's because I didn't do my undergrad there and I missed out.  I've never really argued this point as it is quite obvious that I did miss out [please detect some sarcasm here!!!!!]
I should also note that I am so proud of Jeff for making the trip to the forbidden land and did so with very little grumbling but he still tries to hide in pictures.  My beloved Texas Tech Univ. graduate is still trying to grasp the fact that he is marrying into a fairly well-rooted family of TAMU-ers.  It's a tough pill to swallow but he's a big boy.  And if not that's what counseling is for ;)  Sigh, love makes you do some crazy things.


Anyhow, we had a great time pretending to be like we are still in college.  And do you know what I found out?!  I can't do it anymore.  You know, the moment your 2X year old body wakes up and realizes it's not 22 anymore?!  You have no idea how hard that is for me to admit but it's so true I couldn't lie about it if I had to.  And I know it's only going to get worse...


Regardless, we had a good time and am thankful for to Brother Andrew for opening up his sofas to us for another night's sleep.  Even though there are few things in the world that I would enjoy laying my head on less than that of sofas belonging to college guys.


I have to be honest in the next picture.  I am not quite sure who's arm is who's and actually find it quite disturbing.  But I like our smiles.  Andrew looks like he's loving every minute, doesn't he?!  My, how he loves his two sisters :)


And there's Jeff!  The camera man.  We were racing the sun and I'm thankful to Jeff that he volunteered to be behind the camera :)


Congratulations, ANDREW!!!!
I love you and am so proud!
Now go study ;)


Thursday, April 4, 2013

I came to PARTY!

This past weekend was one of many celebrations for our family & friends.  All we did was party. Party.  And yes, more Party!

We woke the weekend up with a great big PINK party [the only color a party should ever be in my opinion].  It is not lost on us that our first party was a baby shower; a celebration of a soon-to-be-here new life!  Amanda and her family have been our family's friends since before my time.  I know I have pictures and stories about her in various other posts.  But anyway, she represents one of the four families of whom we share very unique family ties.  We have all grown up together, most of us having started life in Louisiana and all of us ending up in the same church family once again in Houston.  If you were to only hear our interactions and conversations and not see that we look NOTHING alike you would definitely think that we were all related.  It's a neat thing.  We are the 10.

Amanda and Trey are in the process of moving to Canada :/ so it was a good thing we were able to work the shower in before they were gone for good!  Amanda is this first to go Preggo on us and we are all so excited!!!

Hostess': Dee, Me, Emily, Amanda, Sandy, Charlotte, & Lynda
As I often do, I jumped at the chance to volunteer as a hostess; the fact that I am an unemployed vagabond-and showers are expensive-never even crossed my mind.  That is until the planning meeting where I quickly started bartering for all physical labor and legwork duties.  It worked out great for me and I got to do what I love to do: Decorations!  Atmosphere!  Sunny Disposition!

Paper corsages for the Mommy-To-Be and Grand-Mommies-To-Be
Emily chose the overall theme of the shower: polka dots!  And man, oh man, do I love me a good dot party! Thus the search for dots and nothing but boldly bright dots commenced.  The food table turned out so cute and perfectly balanced in my humblest of opinions.  Internally painted clear Christmas Ornaments made exquisitely shaped, 2-dimensional dots.

Painted ornaments took their places in my cupcake tree stand.
It looks like one or two didn't survive the trip :/


Amanda asked that we bring an autographed children's book in place of a card.  Every time they open that book in the years to come they will be reminded of their friends and family back home and the plethora of prayers that have blanketed her child.

I Am a Princess from 'Miss' Lynda and Five Little Monkeys from my mom;
because even the princesses that live in Fairy Tale Princess Dream Land must know how to count.
Disguising a Sunday School room as a Fairy Princess World is no easy feat.
You must use your imagination in parts of the room :)



If You Give a Moose a Muffin is the perfect book for a
little girl who's first pet will in fact be a moose.
This was a particularly favorite moment of mine: all of the
Grandmothers examining a hand sewn receiving blanket.
The Grandmother in blue is mine!
After all the gifts had been opened and packed back up and the Sunday School room rared it's plain head again we scurried home to change clothes and get ready for the next event.

So here we go on to the next party.  This was also a sort of colored dots party: the Easter Party!  There were eggs of all shapes, colors, sizes, and ages: oval, pigs, sheep; green, pink, sunburned white; some half eggs but mostly whole eggs; ones that have been used and reused year after year each donning a different year's name/color/number code for what ever the games might have been, some brand spankin' new.

There is an unwritten rule that the Start line for the egg hunt is the very tippy side of the driveway.  I'm not sure when or how that came to be but every year we line up with everyone's toes grazing the nearest grass blade and one or two who break the rule all together.

On your marks...I'm not sure what Jeff said here but Emily looks like she's up to no good
while I'm wearing the 'U Crazy' face.
See what mean?  Little Andrew is pulling the 'I'm the youngest and I don't really know what you meant when you said whatever it is you said.'  Ok, that might have worked in years past [and it did] but that can be your excuse no more now that you are 15 years old and-as of Easter weekend-you have grown to be #5 in the tallest to shortest lineup. And that was 4 days ago.  He's probably already grown 3.5' since then.

...get set...
...GO!
Jeff's Yoda basket came back out this year!
Back at the Finish Line; I had to enlist helpers and hands to count all of my eggs :)
Much to everyone's surprise and my enthusiastic enjoyment I won the hunt with 29 eggs!  I was in it to win it for sure.  This has never happened to me before in this group.  I have come in first place only one other time as best I can remember; but my arrival  into this world first only means I am going to have knee replacements sooner.  You can't win an egg hunt with false knees.


I think most of us made this picture.  I can detect a few missing.
Before I get any frantic phone calls or emails let me just say
that Amanda is the only pregnant person in this picture :)
And that brings us to the next party in the line-up: mine and Jeff's engagement party!  I've waited a long time for my own engagement party to be catered by Mr. Randy's fine fajita grilling and I finally go it.  I had no idea we would receive any gifts but it was an exciting surprise.  I loved them all and we got a few things from our registry!  Looks like I need to jump back on that real soon or we may end up with 3 different styles of flatware and only hand towels for bath linens.




Judging by this picture it looks like I still need to work on my Ever-Ready-for-the-Camera faces
We were able to get Tom & Sue down here for the big event and I'm so glad!  We had such a good time and I'm thankful that they had the opportunity to meet the members of the Mad Mafia   I think they drove away thinking either 'Well, that explains it her' or 'Quick!  We don't have much time but we can still save Jeff!'  :)  We're not that bad.  I happen to think we are a lovely group of people with only the normal amount of quirks.  My Mom's parents were also able to make the afternoon/evening!  Though I guess now that they live with them I shouldn't act so surprised.
And...the 'Grown-Ups'.  That is everyone over 30 years old.
And then there were...a lot of them [ minus Jake, Tim & Faith :( but we left
a spot for them on the end!]
Now let's play 'Who has the baby?'
Back to normal

I'm gonna miss this girl!!!
Lastly, and definitely most importantly, we get to our last party: Easter Sunday!!!  Every one of us donned our Sunday best and went to church to worship and praise our Saviour who, after being crucified, dead and buried for three days, arose from the grave to save you and me from our sins.  We sang all the appropriate hymns including 'The Solid Rock', 'Christ the Lord is Risen Today', and 'Crown Him with Many Crowns'.  I got tingly goosebumps when we sang 'In Christ Alone', one of my absolute favorites.  Oh, it was a glorious day indeed.  But nothing-NOTHING-compared to the actual day that He did arise.  Can you imagine?!  It sounds too good to be true.  But it's not; this I know.

After church we all headed over to Mom & Dad's where Mom had prepared a wonderful Easter Feast.  I don't have any pictures of the day but I'm sure you can use your imagination.  And I dare say that every one of you had to lay down and take a nap after eating your own Easter dinner.  I know everyone in our house did just that.  I would also be willing to bet that there were at least three other houses in the area looked just the same: tired and worn out bodies draped across every open and soft horizontal surface.  These 5 families had an excitingly fast paced weekend of partying!

Do you know Jesus?  Do you study His Word?  If you don't I think you should give Him a shot and just try it out.  What have you got to lose?  It is all simply fascinating.  Simple.  And fascinating.

He Has Risen
He Has Risen Indeed!
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