Monday, August 31, 2009

My Birthday Boy!

Jacob, I can't believe it's been TWO years since this day...

You were a BIG baby...and you've stayed a BIG boy!

On that very first day, Anna fell in love with you. She's been your companion and protector since! (you're only about 3 weeks old in this picture!)

People told me when I had Anna "You'll forget how little they are!" and I just thought that was crazy!! But when I had you, even though you were a big baby, I had forgotten how little babies are! You loved cuddling (still do sometimes!) and were such a good baby! Unless you were hungry...that hasn't changed! :)

Sleep is one of the few times when you are completely still! I love your cheeks.

You are so full of energy. And you are 100% BOY!!! Once you finally started walking, there was no turning back. You do things in your own time and no one, no matter what bribe they offer, can get you to do it faster! You wear me out Bubba!

You still love wheels! You got so excited to see a fire truck under the wrapping! Such joy. Your face is very expressive. And you have the Nuckolls eyebrow look down pat!

Daddy wasn't nearly quick enough at getting that truck OUT for you!

Sheer happiness!

Seriously Dad? I don't care about the card!! Lemme at that package!

That's what I'm talkin' 'bout!

You freely give hugs and kisses. You bring much joy to your great-grandparents!

THE train! You love this thing! We're going to have to move it off the front porch can be heard blocks away! :) You surprised everyone by never trying to touch the train. You were happy as a lark to squat and watch it go 'round and 'round!

Deciding what cake to make you this year was a piece of cake (no pun intended!). Wheels!!! I think this just might have been the easiest cake I've made so far (except for the black frosting!!!).

You weren't sure why everyone was singing to you, but you tried to blow out your candles!

Ooohhhh! Frosting on my finger!!

You were delighted when you discovered that a CAR was on your plate!!

To say you enjoyed your cake would be an understatement!! I thought your teeth would be black for weeks (I'll never make something with black frosting again! What a mess!)
Jacob, you bring so much joy and frustration to our lives! I treasure those precious moments you give me every day...a sweet smile, an unexpected cuddle, a kiss. You are crazy ornery though!! You still won't say Mama when I ask you say Dada instead! You still don't talk very much, but then you've got a big sister that does it for you. And you're pretty stinkin' stubborn. Like I do things in your own time! :) You weigh 30 lbs. already! And you're already 3 feet tall! There's an old wives' tale that says double your height at age 2 and that's how tall you'll be...that means 6' for you! :)
Some days I can't wait for you to start talking so I can know what's going on in that head of yours! These days, you say Mama a lot, but it's almost always "Maaa-ma!" as if you're indignant that something hasn't gone your way and it's my fault!
You can sit and play for a long time if you've got the right toys (cars, tractors...anything with wheels!). But if you get bored or get in trouble!
Some day you will be Anna's protector and she's lucky for that! But for now, you're content to let her "mother" you. For the most part! I can't wait to keep watching your relationship grow and change.
Daddy & I are blessed over and over by the honor of being your parents! We pray that you some day come to know Christ as your Savior and grow up honoring Him with your life. We can't wait to see what He has in store for you, Jacob! We love you more than you can know (even when you drive me to the crazy house!). Happy 2nd birthday!!!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Long Way Home

Last weekend, the kids and I made the trip home from Iowa on our own. This is actually the first time I've done that for a long time. I wasn't worried about it--the kids are old enough now that they travel pretty well. I remember trying to make that drive alone with Anna as a baby. That never went well! She hated her car seat as a baby and she could scream and cry for a loooong time! Anyway, I decided maybe we should leave in the morning on Sunday so we would get home at a decent time and maybe then I wouldn't be so sleepy driving (yeah right). So we got off about 10am. I was tired (I'm always tired!) but the kids were in good moods. We drove for about 1.5 hours to the border. There's an awesome Missouri welcome center with a great playground, so I decided we might as well stop there so the kids could really get out and play (instead of having to run around next to a gas station parking lot). I still can't believe there aren't ANY food places w/ play-places on our way home! NONE.

Anna was a monkey. And right before I snapped this picture, she was clear up standing on the bar that's at her waist!

For the longest time, he wouldn't get up on the playground. I think he was too busy watching all the trucks drive by on interstate! We stayed for over 30 min. and then made a quick stop in the next town for lunch on the go.

It wasn't long before Jacob lost the battle.

She hung on a bit longer. She was seriously having trouble keeping her eyes open to color! I promise she's seat-belted...sometimes she put the belt behind her back and I don't realize it. Like this time!

And me? I had trouble keeping my eyes open a couple times, but we made it! I was asking in my mind, along with Anna "How much LONGER???" :) We actually made really good time. We stopped several times, but not for very long. We made it in 8 hrs (with no kids it takes 7). It didn't help that one of the "shortcut" roads we take was closed! So we had to take a dirt road. We got home just in time for supper and the kids were very happy to be out of the van! And to see Daddy, of course!

Friday, August 28, 2009

I Think I'll Just Cry Now

He doesn't turn two until Monday, but the terrible twos have already started! I'm so tired!!! If this boy gets bored or hungry, he gets naughty! And destructive! Last night he made so many messes. He dumped a cup of milk on the floor (on purpose), he colored on the floor (luckily it was on the wood and it wiped right off), he swept all the magnets off the fridge, he pulled things off the table, he colored on the carpet (with crayon, which I can't get out).........that was all in less than an hour's time (except for the carpet)!!! But THE worst thing he's done so far...happened today during "nap time". And I use that phrase lightly because there wasn't a lick of sleeping going on. I had my work done and thought, hey this would be a great time to catch up on my lost sleep a bit... And then I heard Anna -- "Mama, I tink Jacob's poopy." She'd already told me that once and he wasn't. I figured she was just stalling some more but checked because that's usually when he has a dirty diaper--right after I put him down for a nap. I walked in and could smell it right away. And that's when I saw it...his hands were brown, it was smeared all over his sheet and bumper pad, his legs were smeared. GROSS!!! He thought it was great fun. Especially the part where he got to play in the shower while I scrubbed him and cut his nails. If I knew it wouldn't hurt him, I would've bleached him! So after cleaning him and his bed up, I put him back to bed and then I just wanted to sit down and cry. How come he's so ornery?! I wasn't an ornery kid...I don't deserve an ornery kid!!! :)

But then he does something really cute, like put a rag on his head and pretend to eat a fake lemon at breakfast. And then I just smile and laugh. Until I remember the poop incident. Then I just want to crawl in bed. Papa? Are you coming yet?? I think Jacob is ready for Papa Boot Camp! :D hehe

Thursday, August 27, 2009


I have a terrible memory, so I thought I'd better "write" this down somewhere before I forget!
Tonight as I was reading the rest of Cindy Ellen (the western cowgirl version of Cinderella), Anna said something really funny. Here's the part I read:
*as Joe Prince is coming to the ranch to find the cowgirl whose boot fits the "left behind" diamond spur...*
"Go shovel out those corrals!!" hissed Cindy's stepmother.

And this girl...she's all about being nice. Unless her little brother swipes her crayons or stuffed animal or book or...... :) She cracks me up.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Another Fair!

While in Iowa, we were able to go to the state fair. Anna was SO excited when she found out we were going to another fair! We didn't tell her until we got to the bus stop. You can park at the capitol free and ride a bus to the fairgrounds. She sounded out (with a bit of help) the big sign that said STATE FAIR and if she could have, she would have done cartwheels! And not only did she get to go to another fair, she got to ride a bus! And not a school bus (not that she's ever ridden one of those either)...a town bus!

She just sat and took it all in.

Oooooo...a BUS!

He, of course, wanted to get down and run around. Never mind that the bus was packed and those drivers are cuh-RAZY! So I sang "The Wheels on the Bus" to keep him somewhat pacified! He liked spinning his imaginary wheel:)

This was his favorite ride. Okay, he was only tall enough for 2 rides! But I was surprised he liked it. Actually, he wasn't technically tall enough for this one, but the worker didn't say anything! This thing went WAY up high and I was a little nervous he would freak out and try to get out.

He loved it!! He just peeked out the little window and waved, in between steering and all, ya know.

Hi Papa!

Anna got to ride a few more rides. She loved them all :)

This was the other ride Jacob was able to go on. He hated it. Hated it! Can you tell??

Oh, all these cars? They're just from the workers at the fair!

This is Mid-American's windmill (that's the parent company Dad works for now). It provides 1/3 of the power for the fair. It's a huge fair.

Anna and Papa rode the Farris wheel. She loves the Farris wheel. Jacob hates it.

Mom and I rode this thing. It was fun! :) And a lot louder and faster than I remember!

There's a calf right behind Jacob. You think he wanted to pet it? No, no. He's eyeing the BIG cows. I'm not even kidding. 2 seconds after I took this picture, he headed right for the big ol' cows!

Now that's one cute cow!

That's the cutest moon I've ever seen!!

Now guess what he's spotted...a TRACTOR! stinks in here!

Again with the big animals! We had to keep his stroller away from the pens.

Papa got a little too close to the turkey for Anna's comfort! She bailed out of the stroller.

Those antlers...15 weeks' worth of growth. Seriously! (That's an elk, by the way)

He was a tired boy...the fair wore him out! :)

Wild Mustang

I let my children ride a wild mustang. I'm serious. I didn't know it was a wild mustang when I put them on, but it was! :) Scott was out by my grandparents' moving some of his long horn cattle and said we could stop by and help/ride if we made it in time. Of course, we'd already left home so I had to ride in capris and flip flops! But it was still so relaxing. I really miss riding. It's peaceful.
But I digress...the wild mustang. See, Scott is doing a competition--he gets a wild mustang and breaks it and trains it and then shows it. I think he has a total of 3 months to get it done. The wild mustang he got? Turns out he wasn't so wild! I mean, he was truly wild but he wasn't wild. Am I making sense?? :D Scott said this horse never bucked once! He was very relaxed and easy-going on our mile+ ride! I almost didn't believe him when he told me that was the wild mustang he was training. So we got pictures and one day Anna & Jacob can tell their grandchildren that they rode a wild mustang before they were even old enough for school! ;)

Telling me all about this horse. We rode about a mile from where the trailer was to the house. And we walked the whole way. So it took a while. And that whole time, I don't think Anna stopped talking. But seriously? What's better than being out in the middle of nowhere, on a horse with my daughter? And seeing an amazing sunset (even though we almost got carried off by mosquitoes!).
Mama, is this horse a boy or a girl?
Well, I don't know. I forgot to look before I got on. I think it's probably a boy.
Hmmm...I think it's a girl. We'll call her Horsey.
Okay, Anna.
Well, maybe it is a boy. Is it a boy or a girl?
I don't know Anna. I think it's probably a boy.
Okay. I can tell him "Good boy"!
Mama, I really like horses. I wish I could ride a horse every day.
Me too, Anna. Me too!
We should go to Scott's and ride horses again.
I know. That was fun, wasn't it?
Yes! Can I have a horse?
Maybe some day you and I can both have a horse.
I like horses Mama.
I mentioned that already.

After she finally gave up and came inside, she told me next time she's going to wear her cowboy boots to ride. Me too Anna! Flip flops are NOT made for horse riding!

Last time Jacob was in the saddle, he screamed. This time? He loved it! In fact, when he had to go inside, this is what he did......

laid on the floor and cried! Maybe I'll get him trained, yet! :)

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Iowa's Largest Garage Sale

Well, I don't know if that's official but it sure seems like it could be! My great-great aunt passed away a few months ago. She loved the home-shopping networks and she loved clothes and shoes (for as long as I can remember!) and unfortunately for all of us, she was a petite woman with narrow feet! So we had thousands of clothes and hundreds of shoes (literally) to sell. Dad hauled them up here and before Mom & I even got here, he had the "hanging racks" put up and all the clothes hung up! What a great (and ingenious) guy!! :) So Mom and I spent part of Wednesday organizing the hang-up clothes and putting out all the other clothes.

This is just ONE SIDE of the garage. These are all the short- and long-sleeved tops (not including sweaters and jackets/coats!!).

There's the other side...all the outfits, sweaters, jackets, coats and skirts! More than half of these clothes (and shoes) had never been worn...still had tags on them!

The ping-pong table was completely covered with pants.

The shoes...oh the shoes. I really wish she hadn't had such little feet (or that I didn't have such big ones! haha).

We tried to sell this one, but Anna wouldn't let us.

Can you tell that over half the clothes are gone in this picture? They really are! We sold a LOT of clothes on Thursday. Dad roughly counted today...there are still about 650 hang-up clothes left. That means there were probably over 2,000 pieces of clothing to begin with!!!!!!!

We brought a few things up (mainly toys). I had Anna go through the toy box at home and pick out some toys to sell. I told her she had too many and needed to "get rid" of enough so that the toy box lid could shut! She was pretty good about it, but she did have second thoughts more than once. Especially once the garage sale started! There was more than once today that she stood over her box of toys with her hands on her hips as kids were looking through it!! She also "hid" a couple toys and emphatically told Binga "I'm not sellin' this one!!"

Papa thought it was a good idea for her to sell pop and cookies. She really wasn't too interested in it. Except to play with the money! The kids were really good the last 2 days. We're hoping tomorrow goes even better than the last 2 days for selling. We're doing a "bag sale" hoping that will entice people to come and buy lots! You know the secret for successful garage sales? The right pricing (and having decent stuff...not a bunch of stained, ugly clothes and just junk). People don't go to garage sales to spend $10 for a dress, even if it is brand new. They come to garage sales to pay $3 for a dress--new or not! I think that's a big reason why we've had good success with sales. There's a "moving" sale down the street that's been going on for the last 2 or 3 weekends. Why? Because they're asking $500 for an end table! *stepping off the garage sale soapbox*
Lots more pictures to come...we went to the state fair and last weekend the kids and I rode a WILD MUSTANG!!! :)