Thursday, May 31, 2012

Cousins Camp 2012!!!

Guest blogger: Debbie Stamps

East Texas, here we come!  Abby, Charlie, Reese, Landry, MawMaw & Poppa headed out for 2012 Cousins Camp at Uncle Mike & Aunt Mary’s farm.  They were kind to let us stay there while they were out of town.  We drove off to the music of our Cousins Camp CD.  

The next 3 days were spent mostly outdoors—there was way too much to do to go inside!  One of our first activities was riding in the “Mule” (the Kawasaki ATV) to go fishing in the stock tanks.  According to Cousins Camp traditions, the cousins got to drive through the pastures.   Reese started us off in the fishing, catching the first one.  He ended up with a couple, Landry with a couple & MawMaw got one.  Abby & Charlie were great sports & encouragers--& did some really good casting themselves!  Poppa was kind enough to keep us all “lured” & “baited” & added in some boating.  MawMaw’s favorite fishing spot was sitting at the end of a cane pole with a dead grasshopper that no fish would want on her hook! Everybody fished some from the shore & also from the row boat.   We also all took our guns so we also got to shoot.  We’re always impressed with their aim!

Uncle Mike & Aunt Mary have a great garden each year.  We got to pick the garden & bring it all home—at least a bushel of green beans, some onions, squash & cucumbers!  There’s also a sand pile in the back yard where we suspect cousin Wes had dug a hole.  The cousins had lots of fun digging—trying to turn it into a cellar—complete with steps!  Another day or 2 & they might have made it!

One back-at-the-house activity was clock making.  Everyone got to design & paint his own.

We enjoyed our devotional times each day, complete with missionary stories.  One day we compared sharing our faith with gardening—some preparing the ground, planting, watering, picking.  We saw that Jesus Himself teams with us & fills those roles too—sometimes in miraculous ways!  Another day we compared fishing to the way satan tempts us & each told which kind of bait satan might choose if he was tempting us to sin.  He tries to get us to fall for substitutes for the better things God has for us.  Poppa led our worship time on Sunday.  Each of the cousins had prepared a part—the prayer time, music & reading the Scriptures & Poppa taught us what Jesus says it really means to be great.  MawMaw & Poppa really enjoy seeing the spiritual growth in each of the cousins in the things they share & what they pray for.  Those are extra special blessings!

One day we went to the East Texas Gator farm in Grand Saline.  It was really neat.  We got there just as they were fixing to feed the gators so we got to watch.  The owner fed them brisket!  They also have lots of different kinds of animals for seeing & petting.  The people who worked there were really great to teach us about the animals, as well as let us hold & pet them.  A deer ate part of Abby’s scavenger hunt paper!  Favorites were snakes, baby raccoons & a couple of kittens that were running around!  

We took the Mule into the pasture at night & tried to call up some coyotes with our coyote call but didn’t get any.  However, we really enjoyed the bright moon & all the stars!  

One highlight was making a video of a silly song Poppa had picked out.  It’s about a Silly Jester.  The thing is, it requires 4 silly characters.  Fortunately we had the right cousins to fill each of the roles!  We laughed so much as we made & finally watched our video.  Our thanks to Poppa for sitting up into the wee hours editing it so we could see it the next morning!  

We had another wonderful camp!   MawMaw & Poppa are so thankful for & grateful to Abby, Charlie, Reese & Landry.  They are all so much fun.  We enjoyed talking about important life stuff, laughing, being really crazy together--& a great attitude from each one!  Thanks, Moms & Dads, for sharing your kiddoes with us for a few days!  What a treasure!  (Colson, you’ll be up soon!  Get ready! )

Saturday, May 19, 2012

He's BACK!

Reese "Slugger" Stamps is back in the house!
Tuesday afternoon Reese got his cast off, the same day his baseball team started the end of season Championship tournament.  I was a little apprehensive because when they took the cast off it still looked swollen and he would barely use it because he said it hurt.  Well that didn't last long.  As soon as we walked in the door Greg asked me if the doctor said it was ok to play baseball (I told him yes, because he did, but I really didn't want to tell him:/) and they were out the door tossing a few balls and swinging the bat.  YIKES!  
At first Reese wasn't doing too good but by the next night he was throwing it to Greg down the street.  
Can you say RESILIENT?  Wow! 
 Tuesday night he was just going to go watch the game but when they got there the other team had forfeited so his team just had a practice and Reese got to practice with them.  
Greg said he looked comfortable and he was making plays and hitting balls pain-free so Coach Joe said he could play in Friday's game.  Reese was thrilled to be back!  (Mommy was still a bit nervous I have to admit)
Friday came and his arm had gotten stronger in just the 3 days since the cast came off.   He dressed in his uniform 3 hours early;)
First up to bat we all held our breath...grounder to 3rd and made it safe to first. (about what we excepted being out of practice for so long)
Second time up to bat we were all breathing a bit easier and then it was like a movie.  I felt like I was having an out of body experience...He hit a homerun OUT OF THE PARK!  Yes, that's right...over the fence to straightaway center! 
 The crowd went insane!  
I don't even remember anything, I didn't even take a picture!  We just jumped around and watched his team dog-pile him at home-plate. 
There are no words...we were all elated!  
His was only the second out of the park home run in this league the entire season.  
The doctor told me he could play but would be very weak for about 2 weeks.  He didn't expect him to be back to normal for awhile and wasn't sure he would even feel like playing.  
Well I will have to tell the doc GOOD JOB...He is good as new:)
The team was happy to have him back! 
Way to go buddy!  
Reese told us he thinks his arm healed back stronger like in the movie Rookie of the Year:)
I agree. 

Celebrating with the boys!

Go Royals huddle!

Reese picking up a friend in celebration! 

Home run ball signed by the team 

Reese and his best coach ever, Coach Joe! (Reese was on Joe's team the first time when he was 4)
Joe is seriously the most encouraging, humble, selfless coach we have ever played with.  He has his priorities in check and doesn't take the game too seriously...he wants them to have fun and he truly loves these boys.
We hope to play with Joe as long as we can.   

Parents gone wild;)  So proud buddy!
I love that I got to watch Greg as he saw that the ball had gone over the fence.  It was priceless...I wish I had taken a picture, but it will forever be etched in my mind.  What a moment.  What a proud Daddy.

Royals won it ALL!

Today's Championship game was a nail biter!  
They were behind by 5 and then came back then got behind again by 3 then came back then won it by a walk-off hit, sentence much? Ha! 
But that about sums up how we felt watching today's game-INTENSE but so FUN! And people say they hate baseball! Nutty!
  Wow! Those boys fought hard and NEVER gave up!  
Reese got 1 RBI, 3 hits and one of those was a triple!
So proud of you Royals!  
So thankful for such loving coaches and parents to allow us to come back and enjoy the last week of the season!  Good stuff!  
Now for summer...little league baseball we will see you in the Spring!  
That was the quickest season ever;)

Field Trip to the Zoo!

Finally Reese got to go on his field trip on Friday!  He was worried that it would never happen, but it did, one week before school gets out!  Long time to wait but he had so much fun and it wasn't too hot so it made for an enjoyable day!  His friend, Elliott, got put in my group (only 2 boys-so easy:) and they were both thrilled about that!  We almost saw the whole zoo and the boys were so pooped, I wouldn't be surprised if they both fell asleep on the bus going back to school!
Reese and Elliott.  Reese was sweet enough to squat down...he is about 2 heads taller than Elliott! 
Crazy boys!

Reese and Elliott acting silly!

Getting bit in the rear!  Silly!

The kids enjoyed watching this little monkey.
He would stick his food (lettuce) in between his legs and then swing from the ropes.
They thought it was hilarious:)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

New Rec Center

Our city built a new recreation center and the pool area is amazing!  They have a rock climbing wall that you climb up and then fall into the water.  Abby could climb this wall all day long and now Reese loves it too.  I know he has a broken wrist but he insisted on trying and told me if it hurt he would jump off.  He didn't jump off and said it felt fine!  Maybe he will get the cast off this Tuesday!  I sure hope so!  Poor guy is so annoyed by it:/
Reese taking a climb...with a cast:)

Abby is part lizard.
This summer we are getting a rock climbing season pass at a local gym for us to go as a family...should be fun! It gets to hot here to be outside all the time...we like air conditioning:)

Field Trip!

Wednesday I got to go to Abby's 3rd grade field trip to the Dallas Aquarium.  We had such a great time and each year the field trips get easier and easier...those kindergarten field trips were CRAZY!  

Abby LOVES fish and aquariums have always been her favorite so this field trip she was REALLY excited for!
I normally have BSF on Wednesdays but I decided to miss just this once so I could go with her....this made her very happy.  I told her I was praying about missing class (because I am a group leader and have committed to being there every week unless there is an occasional exception that may come up) and when I told her I was going to miss she said, "Mom, I'm glad God decided you could go!"  haha!  I am too baby:)
Abby's best buds!

checking out the penguins 

This cute little baby monkey followed the girls all around the cage and they wanted to take him home!

silly girls...don't worry they didn't fall in.  (it was the alligator pond:)

Me and my girl

This was so weird.
 They had this plastic ball in the tank with 2 crabs in it.  The octopus made it's way over to it and he was sitting like this for a long time (we didn't realize he was opening up the ball).....and I would show you the next picture but blogger won't load the picture right:/  So just imagine a picture of this octopus inside the ball...he ate the crabs!  The kids LOVED watching this!

Fun field glad I could go!  Love you Abby!

Has anyone seen any shoes?

So I have always been an Adidas girl but last night I got some Mizuno's and I LOVE THEM!  They are a bit brighter than I would have liked, but hey I normally run at night and now my feet look like they glow in the dark--bonus:)  I have been taking a running "break" lately.  I still run around the neighborhood alot but I have not run any races for awhile.  I have decided I am gonna start road racing again...or road "jogging" in my case;)  I need a little competition in my life again...we'll see how long it lasts.  ha!
We will see how long my knees will hold up:)

A Bun in the Oven!

My sweet friend, Stacey, is about to have a baby on June 16th, at least we hope she goes that long:)  Our families had brunch together yesterday!  I can't wait to meet this new addition...I think it's a girl btw!
They are about to move to OKC so we are trying to see each other as many times as possible before she leaves me again:(  She keeps teasing me and moving here for about a year then moving mean:)

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Songwriter Reese

At school they have been practicing writing songs so Reese is VERY into doing this right now.  Tonight we wrote about 4 or 5.  Let me share a few.  They are heartfelt and precious...and then the last one is for a giggle:)

Give the glory all to God.
We are not being prfict (perfect)
We are not together
We are all sinners
We are all set apart
We all are sinning BUT we are forgiven
from the glory of God!
~Reese Stamps

*Wow right?  Reese has such a tender heart to the Lord and it thrills my heart that he would write about His Savior and with no prompting!  Praise the Lord!

Holy One
He is the holy one
He is the Lord abuv (above)
Our prince of peace
The only perfect one
He is the one and I will folo (follow) His foot steps
I will listen
I will bow down and I will give Him the glory
And I will live for him.
~Reese Stamps

And now for a funny one, it's a rap;)

Low, Low, Low
Ok are you ready to listen to what I'm talking about?
Are you ready to go...low, low, low?
Let's look at this....mmmmmmmmmmmm.
Let's GO! Low! LOW! LOW!
Go long with your case and go low, low, low on the table
with your cash and you know I say go LOW!
~Reese Stamps
*this one cracks me up..."go low on the table with your cash?" What? haha!  He's so funny.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Clothes Allowance!

Abby's new outfit she picked out and bought herself!

A few months back we starting Abby on her own clothes allowance.                                                        
What is that you may ask?  
Well basically it's $45 bucks a month that Abby gets to spend on whatever she needs from underwear and socks to shoes and accessories--and that is ALL she gets.  She must think ahead and save if she wants something.  We want both the kids to be learning about money, be a good steward of that money and learn early on that it takes hard work and saving to buy things.  We want them to be prepared but most of all we desire for them to be debt-free so they can be free to serve the Lord and not be enslaved to money and the world's view of money.
Abby has already been showing great signs of maturity, it's just amazing.  She bought a pair of converse a month or so ago and cleans them all the time telling us I better take care of these because I gotta buy the next pair too!  We went to the mall Saturday and she picked out a few things she NEEDS...yes, folks she is being responsible and its a beautiful thing!  Not just buying what she wants but she is using her brain-yay!!  When her clothes envelope was getting low she said, "Mom, I don't have any more to spend let's stop shopping."  I love it!  I am so excited about this step in her life and wait expectantly for the Lord to do a great work in her heart and mind!

Field Day Fun!

Field day was Friday and both the kids asked me to take them out of school.  Nutty right?  We got to the bottom of it and it ended up that Abby just thought the games would be lame and that it would be too hot and Reese wasn't sure he could do anything since he broke his wrist.  Well Greg and I did NOT take them out of school and really talked up the big day (we knew they would love it when they got there)
They did love it and "most of the games were not lame" as Abby put it.  She's not our athletic type;)
Reese said his favorite game was the hurdles and he's the fastest kid in 1st grade...that made his day.
Abby said she liked the 3-legged race and she almost won but fell right before the finish line!  Good try Abby!
Greg and I went up to the school during the games and got some pictures.  We wanted to play real bad!  Who doesn't like field day??  Crazy kids! 
Abby chillin' with the girls while they watch the boys run:)
Abby and Macy...they are great friends

here's comes Reese's class. He is still SO excited to see us...I don't want him to ever lose that:(

Loving life!  Ready to play Live Angry Birds!

Reese shooting the sling shot

His team working hard!

Abby's class getting ready to play a Frisbee game

Almost got it!

Abby has a good arm and can really throw the Frisbee!