Saturday, March 23, 2013

March Madness Brackets - Moon Style

Chris and I always have a friendly little March Madness competition.  Last year I actually beat him.  It was a first.  And, I'll be honest.  It wasn't as satisfying as I thought it would be because I filled out my bracket based solely on rankings.  Usually I follow my heart a little.  I root for some underdogs, pick teams based on their names, mascots, or school colors (seriously!) and don't pick some teams because I don't like that they usually win.  It's not the smartest way to fill out a bracket!  And I don't have a very good success rate, but it's more fun! 

This year I decided to have the girls play along with us.  Sam had no interest in it whatsoever.  I explained what all the numbers meant and they were off.  Sophia filled hers out based on a combination of their rankings and the number of games they've won.  This has Akron and Bucknell going pretty far!  She believes Gonzaga will beat Kansas in the championship game. 

Anna filled hers out solely based on the number of wins each team had during the season with only a few exceptions.  Again, Bucknell does really well making it to the elite 8.  She also has Gonzaga beating KU in the finals. 

Isabella was hilarious!  And it was so much fun helping her fill out her bracket.  She picked by the names she liked best.  St. Mary's made it to the final four, and Marquette and Iona were big favorites to win.  In the end, she has K-State beating KU for the championships.

Then Chris and I filled out our brackets.  I'm not sure his strategy but he has Gonzaga beating Miami in the end.   And I didn't have a clear strategy.  Some games I picked by their ranking, some by the games they've won, some because I like their name.  You know, important stuff.  I have Gonzaga beating Indiana.  We'll see how that goes. 

As of right now, I'm proud to say that I'm in the lead having picked 26 games successfully.  Chris is behind me with 24.  Sophia has 22, and Anna and Isabella both picked 19 games correctly.  That will all change though since I had Georgetown making it to the final four.  Not a good choice.  

I'll let you know how it goes.  So far, I'm lovin' it! 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Because she said she wanted to go to the beach for Spring Break...

Sophia has her heart set on going to the beach.  She loves all things ocean-related and thinks going to the beach will  be A-M-A-Z-I-N-G because she can collect sea shells.  Only one problem.  We live in Kansas.  We're about as land-locked as you get.  But, I thought I'd humor her on Friday and tell her I was taking everyone to the beach. 

You can imagine the excitement - until I told her we were going to the beach at a El Dorado Lake.  Totally not the same, I know.  She didn't want to even go because the whole point in going to the beach would be the sea shells.  No sea must mean no sea shells, right?  I took them anyways. 

After about 10 seconds at the beach, she was one excited little girl!  Because, lakes do in fact have sea shells!  The kids ran around collecting shells, walking in the FREEZING water, and finding "treasures."  Sophia found a glass bottle to put all her small shells in and two pairs of sunglasses.  Nice. 

She even wrote in the sand, "I'm lovin it!"  And there's just something about little footprints in the sand.  It makes my mama heart smile! 

The kids didn't want to leave, but we needed to head home to make dinner.  We promised we'd take them again after they all thanked us for taking them to the beach.  So funny.  But, it just reminds me how thankful I am that they are so easy to please and have such low expectations of us as parents!!  Someday, they'll get to see a real beach!  Now I just have to figure out what to do with all the shells they brought home. 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Sadie Mae

Four weeks ago our dog, Sadie Mae passed away.  We were lucky enough to spend 11 1/2 years with her here on earth and are better because of knowing and loving her. 

She spent every waking minute of her day near one of us.  She followed me around everywhere I went and spent her nights sleeping in our bed, near our bed, or over the last year or two she would sleep in bed with Isabella.  That's where she had the most room! 
She lived to love.  What other purpose in life is there really? 

Our kids have struggled.  Isabella is all heart and is super sensitive.  She'll burst into tears at any given moment which usually sets off Anna.  Sam talks matter-of-factly, as only a four year-old can, about seeing her in Heaven someday.  Sophia.  Oh, my sweet, Sophia.  Sadie was her very best friend.  And a month later, she is still crying herself to sleep.  It is devastating as a parent to watch, but I know it's so very important for her to learn to grieve.  She is not an emotional child at all.  So when she's sobbing, it cuts deep for me. 

I tried explaining how some great grandparents had passed away in years past and that it hurt a lot at first, but slowly we healed some and could remember the great times with them and hurt a little less.  She said, "Mom, those were relatives, Sadie is family."  Ugggh.  It's true.  She is family.  And it hurts.  A lot. 

I promised the kiddos I'd put together a photo album of pictures of Sadie that they could look through anytime they want.  We had a small scrapbook from our "before kids" and "before digital cameras" stage.  I scanned those pages into my computer and started going through the other 10 years of digital pictures.  I had over 900 pictures with Sadie in them.  Yikes!  I narrowed that down to about 140 and made a Shutterfly album.  Thankfully, that will come in the mail soon.  But you can view it on my blog at the very bottom of the page.  Feel free to look over it - but be warned, it really is a condensed version of the last 10 years of our life.  Four babies, four homes, three different towns.  And a whole lot of love!