Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Our first time babysitting out littlest cousin, Max!
Only 7 months older, and Tysen is ready to play football with his buddy!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Fun at Mom's Studio

there are some perks to your mom having her own indoor photography studio...we went to visit yestarday and had a little fun playing in the studio. here's a few of my favorites....

poor tysen being the 3rd kid...these are his first studio shots we've done...logan probably had about 5 sessions by this age...ian probably about 3...but we finally got in there to get some of my little ty-man. this is the best age to shoot! sitting up and everything makes him smile...and he can't crawl away yet! :):)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


with 3 young boys at home, we have to be creative to keep them busy...i've realized that when i have a lot of housework that needs to get done...its usually when they are most demanding of my attention. so...i may have figured out a secret to get both done. i'm seeing that when i start an activity with them...and get their creative juices flowing...they will typically jump right in, and take it to the next level themselves...which frees me up to get little things done in between. yestarday, instead of asking them to 'play with your guys and cars'....cuz i was desperately needing to finish the laundry...we got out some extra christmas lights, and drug them all over the living room floor (making a 'city of lights' of course). we made rooms, and a town center...and then we brought the guys out and cars, and they played hard for the next hour! and as you can see (from strewn clothes at the bottom)...i was "playing" in the "laundry room" while i folded all the laundry....:):)

and the stockings were hung on the tv trays with care....
(give me a break...i have no fireplace!)
tysen is rolling everywhere these days! this is where i found him yestarday!

Monday, December 8, 2008

ian first song...written by ian

this is an ian original...he just started singing this song...over and over...its soo funny!! i think we may have a songwriter/musician on our hands!! :)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Elf Yourself

Andy did this, and well, I laughed a lot, so here goes:


Sunday, November 30, 2008

the latest vanderveer...but not mine!

Introducing my new nephew!! the story is below if you are interested, its pretty bizarre and pretty ridiculous how fast max entered the world, but the pictures are cuter than the story, so they come first...:)
Maxwell Craig Vanderveer
6 lbs. 12 oz.
November 22, 2008

So, here's the story from my perspective...cuz most of you know me...but Kyle's story is on her blog.
Friday night...Kyle calls to say her blood pressure has gone wacky and she is in the hospital, and they are going to induce her in the morning....
Saturday morning: 9am... i called kyle's mom and she said they broke kyle's water at 8 am to start the labor. she had minor contractions, but not enough, so instead of using pitocin, they broke the water.
9:30am: a text that says kyle is dilated to 5 cm... i'm thinking, ok...she's moving along good....hopefully won't take all day....andy left for the hospital, but i decided i had time to wait for my sister who was coming over, and i'd just go after she came, so i could leave the boys there.
10:15am: my sister walks thru the door, and andy calls me to say that the baby is already here! i grabbed my stuff, left my sister to fend with 6 kids by herself...and cried all the way to the hospital cuz i had missed it. i had really really wanted to be there---in case you don't know...andy has an identical twin, and this was his first baby, so there is just a lot of excitement wondering if the baby will look like my boys...and plus we didn't know if it was a boy or girl....etc. i wanted to be there. anyway...after hearing more details, i knew there was no way i could have made it, cuz she went from being dilated to 5 ---all the way to 10 in about 5 minutes...and ya know how i got that text at 9:30 saying she was at a 5? max was born at 9:46am....CRAZY!!! they had been praying for a fast delivery since she wanted to do it without an epidural...and the Lord really granted that prayer! :)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

my little basketball star!

so, logan has had a lot of face time with soccer and school...and now its time for proud moments with ian...he had his first basketball class tonight. he's still too young for leagues, but there are classes through the city, and he got to pick one, and he chose basketball. he was so cute out there, and i'm pretty sure he was the only 3 yr. old...the others were all 4....but he fought hard to keep up...things to practice at home:
-dribbling while standing (not hunched over as close to the ground as you can reach)
-shooting forward so the ball doesn't hit your head
-bounce pass (though he's really good at a chest pass)
-stopping the ball without having to fall on it
i'm just so glad he's so interested...he really loved it!! go, ian!!
pretty good form, right?
and not so good form...:) we'll have to practice some more!! :)

Monday, November 24, 2008

and then he was five....

has 5 years gone by since my logan was born? wow!!! i'm still young right? even though this 5 yr. birthday means, that next year, he will be in kindergarten? o my goodness....
Love you, Loggie!
we had a party at the park...and had all kinds of "sports" to play...i think the kids had fun. there were several new friends that came from his pre-k class and soccer team, along with other friends and family.

and i just had to add this one of my 1 yr. old niece, kenzie...we found her hanging out by the chips, rotating which chips she was eating...she had a great spot there! :)

blue eyed boys

it's still kind of a mystery why all my boys have the bluest eyes!! i know they are in my family and in andy's too, but it's amusing that neither of us have them, but all our offspring does!

and look...they are all smiling in the same picture!!! anyone with more than 1 kid knows this is a difficult thing to catch! :)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Tysen's Tongue Tie

ok, so look really close underneath tysen's tongue....see that little piece in the middle that basically attaches the bottom to the top? this is called a tongue tie. (you can read more about it here.) tysen's ped had previously pointed this out to me when he was younger....some people choose to have this clipped as it can cause problems eating, and speech impairment since he can't stick his tongue out very far....
anyway...our dr. recommended leaving it alone, since he was obviously gaining weight, and it wasn't causing any difficulty in eating.
well, last week, i noticed tysen really fighting me with his solid food. like 3-4 bites into it, he would purse his lips closed and cry a lot like he didn't want to eat. and that is rare as he loves eating! but i know kids go thru phases, so i didn't think much of it...till that night when he woke up 4-5 times crying...ugh! i took him to the dr. the next morning completely expecting a diagnosis of ear infections ...but nope. nothing. the only other thing i had noticed was that his tongue tie had turned white, and i couldn't figure that out. well, it stumped his dr. as well, and i was sent to an ENT who explained to me that the white stuff was like a scab. somehow tysen had torn his tongue tie and it was healing, so it was 'scabbed' over, and that it would eventually come off, just like a scab does. i felt horrible for the little guy, cuz that explained why he didn't want to eat...why he screamed bloody murder if i didn't get the bottle into his mouth just perfectly...why every time he woke up (which was a ton at night, and all thru naps) the only thing that soothed him was a drink of something cold, and then he would go right back to sleep....o, i felt horrible!!
well, this week, the white was gone....and my cheerful little ty-man is back! and guess what...the tongue tie was gone!! the ENT was right, he had torn it (though i have no idea how or when...), it had healed and now, he has full range of motion with his tongue! that little piece that connected so far up his tongue is just gone! my dr. called to check on tysen (yep, that's how great my dr is...called me personally to check on him)...and i told the story, and he told me that i would definately have to buy him a nicer car when he's older, cuz he had just saved me 3-4,000 dollars on that procedure! :):)

Monday, November 10, 2008

It really works!!!

so i have a great recipe for you...and to go along with that, a great accomplishment for me! the boys ate some veggies without me having to coat it in ranch, and without me having to threaten them!! i chopped up squash and zucchini, and added them in --the boys ate it all without one complaint! i believe logan's words were 'this is really good, mom!' .... i am one happy mom!!!! :):) here's the recipe that my two toddlers (and my husband) actually liked!
Taco Macaroni
1 package (16oz) elbow macaroni- cooked (any kind of pasta is fine!)
1 lb. ground beef (browned and drained)
3/4 c. chopped onion (i just throw in some onion powder)
1 can diced tomatoes (undrained)
1 can tomato soup
1 can tomato sauce
1 envelope of taco seasoning

---mix it all together and serve with cheese on top! its pretty yummy! and if you have kids that won't eat many veggies....finely chop up some squash and zucchini and throw it in... my boys never knew the difference!!!!

my so sweet thinker...

this is my deep-thinker...the one that makes me laugh at how organized he is...the one that turns my head with a comment that is way beyond his years. and tonight, he brought tears to my eyes. not in a bad way. but because so many times, i am stumped with how to teach my little man. i know the truth and the right answer, but its too complex for a soon to be 5 yr. old! how do you explain the nature of God, and...well, you'll see what i mean...
so, andy was doing their nightly routine of bible story time...and at the end, they summarize, so
andy says: "...and God answered Hannah's prayer and gave her Samuel...God always answers our prayers..."
logan: "but He doesn't answer my prayers"
a very stunned andy: "what do you mean, bud?"
logan: "sometimes i ask God for a baby girl, but we don't have one"
yeah. how do you teach a child that God is sovereign? andy talked with him for awhile and tried to explain that God always hears us, but doesn't always answer us in the way we ask....etc.
but seriously!
after further discussion we learned that
"at school we went in a circle and got to say what we are thankful for, and i said, 'i'm thankful for my brothers, ian and tysen'...and then the next one said, 'i'm thankful for my brothers and sisters'...but we don't have any sisters...just brothers."
my response?
cuz i'm sure you are all thinking that now i must try one more time for a girl... well, i wiped a few tears away, and after a moment of sadness...i snapped out of it, and said "well, life is full of disappointments"...:):)
(to andy not logan!)

Monday, November 3, 2008


don't we all want obedience in our children? i recently heard a mom speak on teaching obedience to your kids, and i loved her ideas! (she's pregnant with her 6th boy, so she's had some experience!!) its basically that obedience is a learned behavior...we have to teach and train our kids how we want them to respond in obedience. it makes perfect sense! if we are expecting obedience, shouldn't we first train them? otherwise, the majority of training they get is when they disobey, and we are correcting, and it can become a negative thing. well, this mom had a great perspective...she "practices" obedience, so that when she really needs her kids to listen and obey, its natural. she will tell them they are going to practice...tells them exactly how she expects them to respond, and then she calls them from another room, and they "practice" that response. it becomes a game, and the kids have fun. you can give them silly commands like 'rub your tummy and count to 10', or 'toss the orange ball into the chair'...but it teaches them to respond immediately to your call, and obey whatever you are asking. anyway, i loved that idea of training....

the other thing she suggested that i really liked, is to find a phrase that you can engrain into their head. i'm totally stealing hers, cuz i loved it. she asks them "how do we obey?"...to which they respond "right away, all the way, and with a happy heart" .... i love that! i have already implemented that with my boys, and if there's a time that i see some feet dragging, i can stop them and just ask, "hey logan, how are we supposed to obey?", and then he tells me, and in saying it, realizes he's not doing what he knows he should be... and he changes his attitude! (most of the time) :):) ....anyway, i really loved this approach, and thought i would pass it on!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

soccer time!

oh, man, i love soccer games! i love to see logan loving sports and and he has really enjoyed playing soccer! i love to see him sweating from playing hard... i love to watch him pick off every piece of grass on his socks when he falls (before he'll keep playing)....i love to see him wave at me from the field...i love to see him miss the perfect shot cuz he has to switch sides to kick with his left foot...i love to see him kick the ball away from a teammate cuz they haven't quite figured out to work as a team...its all sooo much fun!

just a cute little fan....

these next three are particularly hilarious as these are logan doing a crazy dance cuz they made a goal. not necessarily logan making the goal...he dances for every goal the team makes! he has quite the reputation on the team for celebrating each time we score. everyone on the stands waits to see what he will do....and he knows it!! its so funny to see that side of him cuz a lot of times he's more shy, but here, if someone on his team scores...he rallies the stands by doing a dance!! i have no idea why he feeds off attention! :)

yep...they still make tunnels to run thru at the end of every game!

his first soccer team... go scorpions!!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

my baby is in school...

well, the dimples are still there, but my baby is growing up! he has been begging me to go to school, and it took me some time, but i think we are ready to give it a shot. we enrolled him in Ann Windle School, which is a public school that is all pre-k...he was so excited to go to school, and 'do homework'...(i will have to remind him of this one day)...
today was his first day. i'm not really a super emotional person, so i was a little nervous for him, but not sad or anything. i tend to love that he's growing up, and just really embrace his years, though at times his baby pictures can bring tears to my eyes. he was chattering all the way to school, absolutely thrilled.... as i was handing the office a few last signed paperwork, i turned around to see logan's hands on ian's shoulders and very seriously saying "well, bud, i'm going to go to school every day now. and i'm going to really miss you"... he then tried to pull ian in for a hug, which ian quickly wormed out of...as logan fought him to get his hug, he was saying "no, ian, i have to go to school now...aren't you going to miss me?"....now that made my heart melt to see him get sentimental with his brother.
here's him coming out of class on his first day! his teacher said he was just perfect! :)

this is his carpet spot in school with his name on it...

of course, the gang that picked him up...

6 months

Well, my little Ty-man is 6 months now. He's definately going to have a little personality. He yells so much for attention...and is just the happiest little thing when you are giving it to him! He weighed in at 20 lbs. and 13 oz. which is 94% in weight....and measured at 28 1/2 inches which is 97% in height. I think he looks more like me than the other boys....Logan is a pretty decent mix of Andy and I, and Ian is all Andy...:) I do love my boys...
I set Tysen down this morning to go get his clothes out of his room, and I came back to find Logan reading to him. It was so cute! Logan would ask him questions about the pages, and then take Tysen's hand and point to the answer...he's such a great help for me!

Monday, October 13, 2008

State Fair

we went to the state fair of texas last week (thanks for the free tickets, mom!!)!! soooo much fun!! now that the boys are old enough to enjoy it, we have a lot more fun too! they loved the petting zoo, and the dog shows! of course we played a couple games with them, and they won matching swords!
yeah for brotherly violence!

and here's their new swords...
they proceeded to sword fight for the next hour...
i'm not even kidding.

it was a long hard day, and poor ian doesn't do well without a nap...

Baby V -Not Mine though!!

Took some pictures of my sister-in-law last weekend. This is their first, and they are letting the sex be a surprise...as much as i hate not knowing, there certainly is some anticipation as we wait for "baby v's" arrival! she's due early december...come on baby boy!!! :)

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

playing in photoshop can be lots of fun!! hence the new page layout... and here's another i made for molly...

Monday, September 29, 2008

update on ian...

so...we recently had ian's 3 year doctor appt with our new pediatrician!!

he's weighing in at 44lbs. (off the charts) and 40 in. (90%)...she actually said i should make sure he's excercising and not vegging out all day. since he's a lot heavier than he is tall, she had to say it...though if you have known ian in the past, you know that he's actually slimming up a lot!! :) she wasn't worried, just had to say it kinda thing. didn't bother me, cuz he's always been a big guy, and i know he's active and rarely eats junk food...and well, he's not eating all that much these days anyway....he's my little giant....:)

i also talked with her extensively on the whole milk allergy thing....she sent us to get a milk rast...they draw his blood and test it specifically for a milk allergy. the results were in today and dr. goff called me personally. (another reason i love this office....its not always a nurse calling you! the dr. has called me several times personally!) she said that he definately has an allergy. they rate them on a scale of 0-6 (6 being super serious)...and ian was at a 3 ... which i guess is why he doesn't react to milk in things like bread and crackers...but can't handle things more highly concentrated. anyway, she said that he does have the antibodies that can produce an anaphylactic reaction (the really dangerous reaction that results in wheezing or swelling of the throat), so she prescribed him an epipen (an emergency shot). from what i understood, you can be allergic to something but not necessarily have the anaphylactic antibodies...so he could be allergic to something but it not be dangerous. however, when those antibodies are present, they won't necessarily show themselves when reacting to an allergy... which is why we've never seen them....he's vomitted, and broken out with hives before...but because they see that the antibodies are there....it means, he could have an anaphylactic reaction at some point, so to be safe....we keep an epipen for him. because of the family history of anaphylactic allergies (andy and his peanut allergy and my nephew having an anaphylactic milk allergy) we're also going to consult with an allergist (Lord, help our bank account)...because she isn't sure if he should do further testing and make sure there aren't other things to stay away from. so...long story, but at least i know for sure he is allergic to milk...and hopefully an allergist will help guide me in how to proceed from here.

big happy families...

we have a family tradition with my 2 best friends (shell-middle, molly-right) of going somewhere as a family each fall and taking pictures together. this year we ventured out to las colinas and had a blast in this amazing area! we shot a ton of pictures, then had dinner together right on the canal.....its always a challenge, but each year gets a little easier as the kids get older and begin to understand the concept of bribery....:):)
here's a few of my favorites from the afternoon....

jason, shell, and jake mccarthy...

brian, molly, and madeline bell...