Thursday, October 30, 2008

We're old...

'Took these pictures the other day when Jas was outside helping O ride her bike after she had asked him to take off her training wheels. Once I had them uploaded on the computer and could really view them, I had one of those "We are parents. We are old. We are really grown-ups."- moments. He just looked SO much like "a dad". I know we have been parents for over 6 and a half years, but it really hasn't been til recently that I have started to feel like I'm not 20 anymore. How weird is that? Growing up you have such a vision of what "Grown Ups" look like, act like, and I don't really feel like I've fit into my vision: I love to watch the Hills and Gossip Girl. I check my Myspace everyday (sometimes more than once). I just went to the So You Think You Can Dance AND the America's Best Dance Crew tour shows. I would much rather listen to Cee-Lo than Laurie Berkner in my car. I don't feel old.

And then I do. I have three kids. I have a mortgage. I have to check homework and make sure lunches are made before I head for bed at night. I worry about getting good health insurance and saving for the kids college funds. And I watch my high school sweetheart, who I can still remember as quite the little punk kid, holding up our daughter by the back of her jacket while she learns to ride her bike, so he won't let her fall, like a grown-up dad. And I know getting older means lots of loss- loss of old childhood friendships, death of loved ones, even the loss of that freedom we had when we could come and go and do as we pleased... But at this stage of life, I wouldn't trade any of those things we've lost for the wonderful thing we've gained: New friendships, beautiful children and the great responsibility of raising them to be good people. And I've realized that as we've grown up, so will they- and our job is to do what we can to hold them up, and help brush them off when they do fall. Its a great grown-up job, so its not so bad being "old"..... ('Still won't drive a mini-van though. Wink.)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Ever have one of those days that when its over you say, "PHEW!" Today was one of those.

GOOD PARTS: Luke not only stayed in his bed after we finished reading to him- he also slept in til 7:30!!! Morgan slept through the night (8:00pm - 6:45am)YEA! Lets see if she does it again. Went to JoAnns and Luke actually sat in the cart and didn't touch a million things. M&Ms were given. Bought some fabulous fall decor for my entry table. Spent some time at Mom and Dads, was able to run an errand alone. Resisted stopping at Starbucks. Came home and got to work on Morgan's costume. Managed to knock out an out-of-control headpiece and teeny-tiny Bumble Bee tutu in less than an hour. Picked up Olivia who had a great day and came home to play dress-up with my little Bumble Bee. Remembered I had a Starbucks Double Shot Expresso in the fridge and sat down and enjoyed the extreme coffee-ness of it. Ahhhh. After getting juiced up got inspried to make Luke's peanut trick or treat bag to go with his elephant costume. Turned out great. Made note to make a plam tree one for O. Then made 4 new hairbows for O because all of her basic colored ones has seemed to disappear...Then! made delicious Frito Chili Pie because its cold outside, ate some Tums, washed the dishes while everyone watched Tom and Jerry and put them all to bed. Am about to go watch TiVoed House with Jas. YEA!!!

BAD PARTS: Jas felt very sick this morning. So sick we had to leave the house so he could sleep in peace. Luke has TERRIBLE diaper rash (Potty Training starts in T-4 days). Luke decided after dinner that he would throw Thomas the Tank Engine at Olivia's face and KNOCKED OUT HER TOOTH!!! (We have fancy smancy photos being taken in 1 week and I prayed to the Lord to keep her tooth in her head til then. Oh, well.) She is completely oog-ing us out by sticking her tongue through the hole. Jas is still sick. And very pathetic. Poor guy.


Funny though: Look who Morgan looked like yesterday:

Sunday, October 26, 2008

What A Lovely Day...

(I just wrote that title only to hear Luke start screaming from his room, "I want to watch Tomenjewry!!!!!" Ah, isn't bedtime lovely?.... Now its: "I want to wake uuuuuuuuuupppppppppppppppppp!!!"... I'm channeling Super Nanny.)

Okay, well, anyway! The rest of the day was SO NICE. I guess we haven't had a nice, peaceful, yet fun filled day in such a long time this is quite a shock to me. I woke up this morning, got ready and went off to have coffee with Dianna while Jas stayed with the kids. Then he went off to play in a golf tournament and the kids and I spent the day together playing outside, playing trains in Luke's room, having lunch and watching Enchanted and then a napping. (Except for O, who just kept me company in my bed.) I had told Olivia that I had picked up a treat to do after nap time and it was making her so nutty, that I have a sneaking suspicion that she woke Luke up because the suspense was killing her. Ha! But that was okay...

We all come downstairs and I told them to wait at the table while I ran out to the car. (Hold on. He's up again. I am trying the Super Nanny Technique #21 where you just put them back in the bed and not say anything to them- no eye contact either. Okay, I'm back.) I brought in 3 big pumpkins for them (and me!) to paint. WE HAD A BLAST! I put on a little Jason Mraz, and we all painted together for almost an hour. It took Luke about 15 minites before paint was all over his hands, but he loved it! Olivia is like me, very quiet and introspective when she paints, I loved watching her serious face as she thought out every little detail. They turned out so nice and are now sitting on the front porch for all to see. The kids then went out to play, I cleaned up the kitchen and checked my email, folded some laundry and Jas called to say he was on his way home with dinner! So nice. We had a great dinner together, did our Sunshines and Rainclouds where the pumpkin painting was the highlight of every one's day, and the Raincloud of Jas' because he missed out. We bathed everyone, Jas did story time tonight so I could just sit in peace for a minute and Wha La!: The end of a great day. Its so nice to get getting our little family's groove back. Here's to many more lovely days to come in our new place. (Luke's asleep now. Thank God.)

Saturday, October 25, 2008


Hilarious Jason Quote Of The Day:

"If I'm going to be a fairy, may as well be the best one!"

Context: Olivia has a preview DVD of the new Tinkerbell movie, which contains games and information about all the other fairies in the movie. There is a quiz that tells you which fairy you are most like ...Jas is Tinkerbell.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Freak-y Baby

Morgan's about to be 3 months old on Friday and to be honest with you, she is a little nutty. Ever since she could really see people, she has made what we affectionately call "crazy eyes"- where she opens her eyes HUGE. I'm not quite sure what she is thinking when she does this, but its so funny... And whenever you see her do it, you have to say , "Whoa! Cra-za Ize!" and she just cracks up.(See below.) Morgan is also slowly growing the longest lashes in Yarbrough baby history, and did so overnight. If she was a grown women with these, she would look like a drag queen. Seriously. And she has the chubbiest little thighs- and its really just her thighs- no where else is she this pudgy. Its adorable... but weird....And she just cut two teeth. She is 11 weeks old. She's freakin' me out.

But, oooooooooooooo, do we all love her. She smiles ALL the time, sleeps like a pro, loves to talk to you and is really starting to laugh. We are so blessed with such a sweet, sweet baby. Luke now only calls her, "Moe-gen Jane". Love them all.

COMING SOON: A Reading of "No No Yes Yes" by our very own L:uke Palmer Yarbrough. Stay tuned.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Not Me Monday: The Anniversary Edition

In honor of our 7 Year Anniversary today, I am dedicating my Not Me Mondays to my precious husband for putting up me and my shinanigans...even before he knew me!

My OBSESSION with Jason did not start at the Back to School Bash in 1996. I did not see him all Ceasar Haircut- Baggy Jean- Ridiculously Large Polol shirt-y and think, "Love Him! He will be mine, oh yes, he will be MINE!"

I did not enlist the help of my two best high school friends to break into an Athletic's Display case in the entry way of the school with a bend coathanger loaded with masking tape when we were supposed to be practicing a kick routine out in the hall! We did not accidentaly completely rip down everyone else's photo in the process! Vandal, I am not!!!

I did not OBSESS over what direction I would walk from class every other day, seeing as how I MIGHT see him (read: stalk him) in the hallway on "B"days as we walked out of the school wing on those days. I would never intensionally have my friends laugh at me so as to appear hil-ar-i-ous and irresistable!

I did not completely loose my cool whenever he would show up at the Taco Bell parking lot on a Friday night, or drive a route around Carrollton to drive past his house and the homes of his firends with the chance his car might be out there! I did not make extra trips out to my car on certain days when I was supposed to be getting ready for Drill Team because I saw him leave out the gym area doors one day and thought I might casully run into him again one day! And, no, I didn't earn numeroud tardy demerits for this! I did not enlist the help of every Senior Troyann I knew to casually fit me into any conversation they happened to have with him and mention how fabulous I was. Who is that looney? Who has that much free time?? ..Who has that much gas money???

I did not change clothes 50 times and then go buy something to wear to Stacie's 18th birthday because I knew he would be there and that was going to be the night a little "Liquid Courage" could finally get me to talk to him. And, no, her birthday is not in December, so, no, I hadn't been working up this courage for 5 months!!! (Please note: I did have someone introduce us and later learned he didn't remember it. Nice.)

I didn't have a bunch of Jason's friends stop by my house one day only to find the golf team picture FRAMED in my room! Seriously- who would be so careless?!? (Or so psycho??) That wasn't the day that the cat was out of the bag, or the night I was told to call him and did.

I did not feel bitter that I paid a fortune for my prom dress and hair-do, only to ride there in the nasty old "Norton Van", not dance one dance and spend the night fishing Jason's head out of the toilet, sleeping on the cold bathroom tile. No! Who would care? Seriously? Only supposed to be the best night of High School, right? RIGHT!?!

I did not cry for about 2 weeks after the moved out to Arizona after graduation, nor did I rack up a $400 long distance phone bill while doing more crying! And, no, $395 of that bill were not caused by us saying, "Okay, you hang up first....No, you hang up.... I love you.... I love you more...No, I love you the most"! Come on! Who would be so ridiculous???

After a few years of back and worth, break-ups and make-ups, we found each other again... and here we are: 12 years of friendship, 7 years of marriage, 8 homes, 3 kids and 1 dog later. And I still adore him. He makes me laugh everyday. He does a million things that make me nuts, but they are all endearing. We've had our moments, almost called it quits, but we always come back to the fact: We make each other whole. He is The One for me. We are yin and yang, Type A and Type B, athletic and artistic, serious and silly. I think our partnership makes us great friends and great parents. We show each other different ways to do and think about things everyday, and everyday he does something that makes me stop and say, "I really am a lucky girl." We've been through alot this year, but it seems like every time we stop, hold hands and cross that obstacle together we always make it to the other side, closer together. XOXO. Love you, Jas.

Friday, October 17, 2008



As long as I have known him, that was Gary's word for "great" and was always said with is huge smile on his face. Jas and I eloped: "Well, pure." Olivia sat up by herself, "That's just pure, Miss O". When he walked into our house in Carrollton that he helped us buy for the first time, just one word, "Pure". Jas told me its a golf term, but I can't hear it without thinking about Gary and the one simple word that personified his spirit. It was that spirit that didn't fade, even til his last day. He was always trying to smile, loving his family and trying to keep his spirits up.

But the truth be told: ALS stole everything from him. I know many of you have been down the long road we traveled during his illness, learning along with us about what was happening to him over these past few years. But I know for a fact that the horrific nature of this disease really isn't understood unless you've witnessed it. Even during the last month of his life, some of his own brothers and sisters didn't realize the extent of that ALS had done to Gary's body- they thought there would be more time... But as we know, this disease has no mercy and doesn't care about time. I hope that by sharing his struggle with you, I can reach your heart and have you help us.

Gary was diagnosed in July of 2006, just after Luke was born. It had started as something simple: he wasn't able to clip is finger nails. He couldn't get his thumb and forefinger to work together. He didn't really think much of it really, until slowly other things started to surface: he had trouble holding his fork, the strengh behind is golf swing was fading, he was getting confused and lost going to places he had been a million times. He went to several doctors and when the third one agreed with the diagnosis, he and Martha finally told Jason. We all frantically searched for any information about the disease we could find and lay our hopes in the fact that he could have 5 years left (the longest end of the 2 to 5 year average) with us, that according to what we read, even if his body would be useless, his mind would be with us still. But that was his absolute fear: a mind that couldn't communicate because he would be unable to talk, an active mind in a numb body.

ALS stands for Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis . A-myo-trophic comes from the Greek language. "A" means no or negative. "Myo" refers to muscle, and "Trophic" means nourishment---"No muscle nourishment." When a muscle has no nourishment, it "atrophies" or wastes away. "Lateral" identifies the areas in a person's spinal cord where portions of the nerve cells that signal and control the muscles are located. As this area degenerates it leads to scarring or hardening ("sclerosis") in the region. With ALS the motor neutons waste away and can no longer send impluses to the muscle fibers that would normally result in muscle movement. After awhile, when a muscle no longer receives the nuerons they need to function they just waste away.

We watched Gary go from the biggest, brightest smile in the room, to a withered shell of a man, and at an alarming rate. By the time this disease was done with him, he could no longer do the things he always did and loved: play golf, enjoy a great dinner, have a beer after work, travel or visit with family and friends. It also took away his ability to do the things we don't even think about throughout our day. He had very little strengh in his legs and required a walker or wheelchair to get around, the muscles in his face and throat had stopped working so he could barely manage a smile or speak above an almost silent whisper. He relied on a breathing and suction machine just to be able to inhale or swallow without choking. He needed assistance with every part of his life. He had become the person he had feared he would become. I've heard it said that we were lucky he passed away before things became unbearable, but I don't know how much worse things could have been. I have only said it to a few very close friends: but I was grateful when he died and thanked God for his mercy. Gary was released from the prison ALS had put his mind and body in.

I know many of you have seen our red "Team Yarbrough" shirts we putt around in. They were made by Gary's co-workers in January of 2007 when they all walked in his honor. Just to demonstrate what a profound effect he had on thier lives, everyone from the mailroom intern to the President of Finance for Chase Bank turned out to walk in Phoenix- only after holding a golf tournament the day before where they donated the funds raised not only to the ALS association in his name, but started college savings accounts for all of the grandkids that they all commited to donating to every year because they knew how much they meant to him. The best part about those shirts to us are the sayings they put on the back- all of his little catch phrases that came to mean alot to them, and will always remind us of him. My favorite is that one simple word, "Pure".

We will continue to read about new research and pray for a cure. We also support any cause that works towards reaching that goal, and we ask that you as our friends and family do the same. Every dollar helps and will hopefully make sure that one day no one else's husband, dad, father in law or G-Daddy is taken away before their time.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Sunshine and Rainclouds

I have been feeling like Super Mean Mommy lately. No time to snuggle- too many boxes to unpack. No time to joke around- too tired from unpacking said boxes. No time to just let things slide- trying like a Nazi to get my well-behaved children back. I've been snippy, impatient and well, not the Mommy I am... I wake up every morning and say to myself: "I will not yell at anyone today." And then sure enough- Olivia is in the bathroom singing to herself in the mirror for 10 minutes and is now running late to school. Or right as I start my morning chores, Luke comes in for the 15th time to ask me to turn back on his radio because HE can't resist touching the buttons! And I loose it. And I hate it. It is very hard trying to figure out how this whole 3 kids of such different ages thing goes. I can't seem to get the rhythm right- can't seem to figure out who should be doing what, when and where. It makes me nuts because I am SUCH a type A person and have to have order or I can't think straight. Such a perfectionist that I put too high of expectations on my little kids. A wise women (and you know who you are) once told me: "Just mess up. Forget something for once in your life. Make a mess or a mistake and let your kids see you do it."

So the other night Olivia was in the pantry poking around (which I'm sure I got on to her for)when she noticed a cookie mix that I had bought. I had just finished re-doing Luke's lamp for his room (New Unnecessary Project #421)- I had out the paint, glue gun, fabric- the whole she-bang. The kitchen was a mess!, and she says "Can we make these cookies?" Now- normally I would have given her the whole song-and-dance about how I don't have time, and I've got this huge mess to clean up, blah, blah, blah. But instead I left the mess. And we made the cookies. I commented on how well she broke the eggs, she complimented me on how strong I was mixing in the butter. We divided the dough and each had a cookie sheet to put ours on- being silly and trying to sneak our dough on each other's trays. We had a serious discussion about how we must never tell Mimi that we ate the raw cookie dough off the spoons when we were done. I put the cookies in the oven and she went off to her room to play until dinner.

Each night at dinner we go around the table and do our "Sunshines and Rainclouds", or the one best thing that happened that day and the one worst thing that happened that day and discuss, "Coffee Talk"-style. We all went around and when it got to O she said her raincloud was she didn't get to go hang out in the gym before school because she got there too late (thanks to the concert she performed to herself instead of brushing her teeth) and very simply her sunshine was "Getting to make cookies with Mom." It was the "getting to" part that got to me. I have been so busy doing things that REALLY don't matter that I haven't been spending time with my kids and they feel it. It made me realize that sometimes you need to leave the mess, not sweat the small (unnecessary) stuff and really realize how important "Mommy-time" truely is.

I think project #442 will have to be put on hold for now. I have cookies to bake.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Weeeee'rrreee Heeeerrreee!

Sorry I have been missing! Moving is such a beating. And we don't have internet at the house yet due to cable complications. But...

Here is my "NOT ME MONDAYS " post all about moving!

I did not allow my son to eat an entire box if Nemo fuit snacks on the plane. NEVER! There's like 8 packages of those things in there! EWWW!

I did not bribe my daughter with the Pet Shop house of her dreams if she would play with Luke during the entire flight! Bribery?? Are you kidding? What parent would resort to that??

I did not take over 60 pictures of the house we are renting and submitted them to the landlord with our Conditions Report- who would be so anal and Type A?? Who would care if there were small paint splatter on the sidewalk??

I did not completely ruin our dining table when I lost the screws to the legs during the move, bought more that were too long and then drilled 12 of them straight through the top of the table! I mean, come on?? I would never be that stupid!

I would never have decided that EVERYONE'S furniture needed repainting and spend three days high on fumes from painting in the garage! Who would dare make SO much more work for themselves when they have a house full of boxes and children to tend to??? No me!

I did not throw my husband's ATM card away while it was hiding in a stack of napkins that I waded up and put in a plastic Starbucks cup that I hid in our trash bin outside! What!?! How could that happen when I don't buy Starbucks as my little sacrifice to the new "Dream House" fund??? I would never hide ANYTHING like that from my husband!! Much less use his card to pay for such a thing! (But I do give thanks to the Lord sending me the message that that's where it would be found during the carpool line so I could act like I found it in the car once I got home!)

I would never secretly rehang everything that Jason hung up in the house about 6 inches below where he put it! He worked hard being so "HGTV" and all that that would just be mean. Ü