summer bucket list – lake trip

oh gosh, i should not have waited an entire week to write this all out…i’m starting to forget! mombrain.

1.  every year my dad’s side of the family spends a week (or more!) at Proctor Lake in the summer.  we’ve been the last 4 years since we now just live 2 hours away.

2.  we left our house around 6pm friday night and arrived at 8pm.  everyone was gathered at my grandad’s campground having dinner.  caleb and my dad headed down to the water while dane set up the tent before it got dark.  that night dane and i slept in our tent while my dad, his girlfriend (jan), caleb, and emily (jan’s granddaughter) slept in my dad’s camper.  it was so nice.  the weather was absolutely perfect.  not hot and muggy and it was cool at night.

3. the next morning we woke soon after the sun came up and my dad made us a big breakfast. caleb and emily loved going down to the lake shore and throwing rocks in the water.  then we’d get them to come back up to the campground and swim in the baby pool.  saturday was a loooooong day.  in the best kind of way.  it was just us and the lake and it was glorious.

4. the babies went down for a nap around noon and dane and i struggled to find a plan.  we didn’t really need to nap, we felt pretty rested!  and we didn’t really want to swim…i’ve become such a wimp when it comes to lake water.  i grew up bathing in that stuff and now i won’t go near it. so, we decided to head into “town” which happens to be Dublin.  Dublin Bottling Works (formerly known as Dublin Dr. Pepper) was hosting their annual Birthday Bash and my mom’s entire family had attended sometime throughout the day.  we showed up at the tail end of the festivities and ran into some family members.  we grabbed a root beer float (because we’re bad!) and visited at my granny’s house for about an hour.  i don’t have any photos of this.  it was about 3:30pm by then so we decided to stop by Dollar General on the way back to the lake to buy useless toys and snacks.

5. that evening the boys flew (or tried to!) kites and my great uncle made us a wonderful dinner at his campsite (across from ours).  like is said before, the weather was perfect.  it only reached 80 for the day and started to cool off fairly early.  it was just a great time being outside with family.

6.  went to bed around 9 or 10.  i have the third trimester no sleep curse where i toss and turn most of the night.  on one turn i grunted (attractive, i know) which made dane wake up and ask if i was OK.  funny note:  he wasn’t actually fully awake.  i’ve probably mentioned here before but he’s kinda known for this.  he is a HEAVY sleeper.  he will “wake up”, have a conversation with you, and not remember anything the next morning.  but this time, he did open his eyes for a split second after laying back down and he saw lightning in the distance.  he immediately bolted upright to assess the on-coming storm.  within two minutes the wind started to gain momentum.  we didn’t have our weather cover over the tent so he started working on that.  i was still laying in the tent fully awake by then.  i kept thinking how horrible the wind sounded and then i realized we left almost everything outside by the picnic table.  it was my turn to bolt outside except i know it wasn’t near as graceful as dane.  i had a hard time getting in and out of the tent with my round belly.  anyway, we managed to attach the cover (upside down and the wrong way) and grab most of the valuable things and went inside the camper.  we were both feeling pretty adventurous and wanted to stick out the storm in our tent.  but i didn’t want to be stupid about it.  dane quickly checked the radar and it showed the storm would be heavy rain and wind but no tornadoes.  yay!  so we headed back out to the tent.  we stayed awake for the entire storm.  it’s extremely loud and scary when you think your tent is about to blow over.  we had water seep through the seams and it soaked through some of our sheets at the edges of the tent but that was all.  the storm died down about an hour later and dane and i were able to take a little nap before it was time to get up.  i think the storm was from 4:30-5:30am.  so we were pretty tired the next day.

7.  sunday morning was nice and cool and started out the same way saturday did, with a delicious breakfast.  we headed over to my great uncle’s camp for some breakfast burritos.  then it was back to our place for the final hours of our trip.  dad took the babies down to the water several more times and i just lounged at the picnic table and read a little bit.  we packed up our stuff, kissed our kiddo, and drove home.

8. i took an hour nap when we arrived home and then we went to a movie since my dad was keeping caleb at the lake for a few days!  it was nice to have a few days to myself but i really can’t be away from him for more than 2 days.  i get all mopey and depressed.

all in all, it was a wonderful trip.  i am so thankful we have been able to keep this tradition since caleb was born.  and i can’t wait to take Eli next year!


















bucket list – friend sleepover

this actually happened a few days before our bike ride but we were in the process of switching up rooms right after i took some photos so i didn’t have my computer for awhile.  now, i’m typing on my keyboard which sits on my new hand-built standing desk.  it’s awesome.


as with most events, i meant to take more photos.  but, these kids had a BLAST hanging together for 24 hours so we were busy.

we went and picked up jude after nap on a thursday afternoon.  this photo was taken that evening after about 20 minutes of playing in our backyard.  they’re both sweating.  and my kid was just pure crazy by then.  we knew they wouldn’t sleep well (and we didn’t really care) so we put them down kinda late…maybe 9pm…after dinner.  we tried having them in the same room.  by 10pm we had to move jude into our empty extra room.

jude got up a few times in the night.  most likely scared of the environment but then went back down easily.  then caleb woke up around 5am and couldn’t handle his friend sleeping any longer so we were ready to go by 6am.  we headed to the park by 7am to play in the cool weather.  i could tell they were both tired by 10am so we couched it and had a snack and started a movie.  jude was totally into the movie but caleb could not handle the fact that his friend WAS ACTUALLY AT HIS HOUSE so he got and literally started running around the house.

“caleb, do you need to go potty?!” i asked as he headed down the hall, galloping.

“no, i WANNA RUN!”

oh my word, kid.  you’ve only had 6 hours of sleep and have climbed every structure at the park.  YOU ARE TIRED.  so i threw them in the pool and sprayed them down with the hose.  they were naked and loving it.  next up was lunch and then they settled in for naps, early, around 12pm and slept most of the afternoon.  we took jude home around 5pm friday night.

i had an event to attend that night around 7:30 and got home around 10pm and….then….crashed.

i’m so glad caleb has a best friend at such a young age.  their love for each other is mutual.  can’t wait to have jude-man over again!

Wild Ride Bike Ride




We woke up at 5:30am on Saturday and headed to Richardson for our family bike ride (mine and Caleb’s longest yet!).

Oncor was one of the sponsors of the event and Dane is an official rider for them. Hence the official looking jersey he’s wearing. I’m only a little proud of him. 🙂 Anyway, we had to be there for an official photo with the Oncor team.

So after the photo we found the hospitality table and, y’all, it was legit. They had chick-fil-a breakfast sandwiches, fresh fruits, homemade muffins and cookies, chocolate milk, and all the other amazing junk food everyone loves right before a big ride.

There were three rides…16, 40, and 64 miles. Dane could easily have done the 40 mile and probably the 64 mile. But not Caleb and me. So we lined up with all the other families, newbs, and amateurs at 7:30am for the 16 mile trek. The weather was exactly perfect. Breezy, cool, and clear.

Our plan was to ride easy but quickly the first 9-10 miles until the rest stop. I wanted Caleb to have a chance to get out of the trailer, walk around, potty, and grab a snack. Around mile 10, we hadn’t come to the rest stop and saw other riders start to question our route. Turns out we were lost!! We stopped and talked to a few others and checked the map.

I won’t hold back here…I was super bummed. It looked like we were 2-3 miles outside the route and we had missed the rest stop! It was definitely a mental thing. I was feeling fine and we decided to give Caleb a phone to play on since he was getting restless so I knew he could make it another 30 minutes. I could sense the disappointment in Dane, too. To top it off we rode the next few miles of straight hills and it was starting to heat up. Ugh.

But after 10 minutes we were feeling better and knew we were (at least) halfway done. We started seeing familiar signs and volunteers and knew we were nearing the finish.

It ended up being way closer than we thought!! When we crossed the finish line, my Strava app read right under 16 miles!!

So we rode to our car and Dane packed everything up for us. Caleb and I walked around the festival aimlessly eating pizza and soda. Caleb was dooooooooone. Just so very sleepy. And we had to get home so Dane joined us for a few minutes to grab snacks and we headed out. Caleb and I crashed on the way home. Then we showered and dressed in an hour and then drove an hour and a half to Stephenville for my niece’s birthday party.

Needless to say, we were all doooooooone when we got home at 8:30 that night. We fell asleep immediately and “slept allll night” (Caleb says it like that).

Overall, it was awesome. Dane will do a big ride next then I’d love to get another family ride in before the baby and before I can’t even get on a bike anymore.

BUT, I will request that it’s under 16 miles. With a clearly marked map. 🙂

summer bucket list – 2013




yay! summer is almost here!  we attempted a summer bucket list last year and did pretty well.  until we got T.  ha!  our life was put on hold (and rightfully so!).  this year, we have the ENTIRE summer before baby boy #3 comes so i’m excited to spend it with my firstborn.  since it’s already hot and we make our own schedule, we’ll technically start NEXT WEEK with a few of these things.

1. movie in theatres – caleb loves going to the movies.  probably because we took him to his first movie at 18 months.  we usually wait until a kiddie movie makes it to our $2 theatre but we might splurge and see the matinee showing of Monsters U that’s coming out in June.  either way, going to the BIG movies is a real treat for him.

2. C.R. Smith AA Museum – i don’t know why we’ve never been.  this was on the list last year.  it’s an airplane museum that is interactive for kids.  and not too expensive (as far as museums go!).

3. go bowling – dane and i went bowling on our first date!  we never go and i think that’s what makes it fun.  i think caleb would love it!

4. date with dad – let’s face it.  the kid is overexposed to his mama.  i am so blessed to be with him every waking minute but he needs some guy time.  away from the house.

5. legoland – oh my word.  caleb is obsessed with legos right now.  we have a few kits that he and dane put together EVERYDAY after work.  they will sit for hours while i make dinner and put together cars, trucks, gas stations, whatever the instructions say.  i kind of check out at those times and let them have their moment but dane tells me how impressive his concentration and fine motor skills are. so, yeah, he’ll probably flip out at legoland.

6. pay for meal/coffee – this is something we always need to be doing, right?  well, we don’t. i need to be more intentional about it.

7. watch fireworks – we’ve never planned to attend an event before.  we always did growing up and we need to find something local that isn’t too crazy packed.

8. friend sleepover – we’re already making plans for caleb’s best friend, jude, to come stay a night with us!

9. fun family photo – not just a phone photo.

10. play in the sprinkler – probably a daily thing but all we have is a kiddie pool and i’d like to get him a sprinkler or another fun water apparatus.

11. wild ride bike ride – may 18th!  16 mile bike ride as a family.  this time, daddy will be pulling caleb behind him.  woohoo!

12. go to the lake – my dad goes to the lake every year.  we’ll be visiting for a weekend.  can’t wait!

13. water park – there’s a huge water park right down the road from where we live and we’ve never been!  mostly because i don’t know how toddler friendly it is.  nothing like paying $$$ when you could have had more fun in your backyard.  ha!  but i think caleb is old enough to do a few rides and he’ll enjoy the lazy river and bigger pool.

14. visit snocone stand – there’s an awesome stand less than a mile from our house.  gotta go!

15. ride the mini train – it is a pretty fun ride even if i barely fit in the seats.

16. s’mores – a 3 year old can handle his own marshmallow roasting, right??

17. swim lessons – they have them at our town aquatic center.  i need to get on this and get him signed up!

18. water balloon fight – i’ll have to warn our neighbors.  caleb screams at anything he enjoys.  i think he would thoroughly enjoy this.

19. go to the zoo – classic event for the whole family

20. build a fort – i should have added ‘epic’ to it.  i’m getting my engineer husband involved in this one and we’re going to build the most elaborate, sturdy indoor fort you’ve ever seen!

well, those are the big things i’d love to see fill our summer.  what are yours??

summer bucket list – tour de pepper

i’m gonna write everything out first with these posts…i wanna remember it all.  it’s gonna be long, so you can skip ahead to the photos if you want.

1. on friday, june 8th, we pulled out of our house around 6:30pm in the damon’s jeep.  the night before our car started acting up so we had to borrow theirs last minute.  it has no A/C and we had to cram our bikes and all our things in the back.  i fought bitterness for the first hour of the trip, but then i got over it.  if i learned anything from traveling with my granny all across the United States, it’s that something will go wrong.  not everything. and it may not be that big of a deal, but something will go wrong.  and you just go with it.

2. we arrived at the gorman dairy queen around 8:30 where my mom and kinsey met us there for dinner.  kinsey and caleb play so well together and i just burst with joy when i’m around them.  we got to my parent’s house a little later and let the kids play in the sandbox outside on the porch.  it took awhile to get them ready for bed, but a few books helped.  we all crashed around 11pm.

3. dane, caleb, and i left the house the next morning at 7:10 a.m.  we were 10 minutes behind because we couldn’t find caleb’s shoes!  we needed to be in Dublin by 7:30 to get our bikes and numbers together.  not to mention, this was our first ride and we wanted to check out the area and have time to get set up.  anyway,  we didn’t find the shoes so caleb rode the tour without them. 🙂  it was just a 9 mile trek, but it was extremely difficult!  my granny had warned us there were 4 big hills.  but she left out the other 20 medium sized ones.  i have a hard time with any incline with caleb behind me so it was tough, but we never stopped to walk and we were the 2nd family to cross the finish line! i did get nauseous the 2nd half of the ride for a bit, but i think it was because we were in a rush that morning and i didn’t get enough to eat.

4. i didn’t have my camera all morning so we just have phone photos of us finishing.  but you can see our stats from the ride below.  afterwards, we left caleb with my mom and aunt while we took a shuttle back to the high school (where the ride started) and took showers.  we had planned to take showers at my granny’s house since she lives in dublin, but we were sweaty and we had someone to watch caleb for awhile.  well, we didn’t have towels and i forgot my undergarments and flip flops.  everything totally reminded me of our trips with granny because every stop was new and you had no idea what to plan for.  but we came out smelling a little better and feeling a lot better.  then we headed to dollar general to grab some snacks and other things i forgot. 🙂  i will say that the $1 flip flops i bought weren’t half bad.  oh, and my mom bought caleb some $4 water shoes so the elderly women of dublin would stop commenting on his bare feet. lol. parents of the year right here, folks.

5. we met back up with my family around 11:00 to watch granny cross the finish line.  she rode the 34 mile!!!  she’s 70!!!  she crossed at 11:25 and then we all went over to the rest area for the bikers and watched the awards. caleb was pretty much done after that so the three of us headed to granny’s house to eat lunch and take naps.  C got 3 hours, i got 2 hours, and dane got 1.

6. around 3:00, my sister, michael, kinsey, mom, and granny came to the house because they finished walking around at the celebration festival.  since dane and i didn’t really get to see everything we headed back up there while caleb slept another half hour.  my sister and michael came along.  we did the tour of the plant and it was SUPER short.  i’ve probably been 5-10 times in my life when they were bottling dr. pepper so i forgot to take photos until the very end.  and i was expecting there to be more!  but, it was dane’s first time and it was pretty fun.  then we went to the soda shop and bought some new T-shirts and bumper stickers.  then we ran into my uncle (he’s the general manager of the plant) and he told us all about the sand sculpture.

7.  we hung out at gran’s for a few more hours then headed back to gorman to get our things and then drove out to the lake where my dad and his side of the family were staying.  i didn’t take any photos out there because i was pretty exhausted and it was super hot.  besides, we were only there less than 24 hours and we did a lot of sleeping and lounging around.

check out that max speed!  31.5mph!!  we were flying down the first downhill, but that was it!  haha.

being tourists in our matching shirts in front of the plant

that’s right, i’m no longer a Pepper!

my sister and michael eating/drinking a Triple XXX rootbeer float. yum!

all the ‘new kids’ that were announced.  i tried most of them and cherry limeade is my favorite!

all the new flavors on the backs of the celebration shirts.  they were playing us a sweet song on the piano.

granny with her GREAT grandkids.  i remember when that was my sister and me. 🙂

lots of driving.

caleb was stuffed in the backseat with the bikes and luggage.  but he had monks and bear with him so he was good.

drove into the lake just as the sun was setting saturday evening.

trips and events like this are pretty difficult with a little one, but overall we had such a great time and it made me miss living close by my family.

there’s just no one like them.