Wednesday, December 20

Silver Springs

We have been busy and I don't really know with what I have been. :) But we did go to Silver Springs in Ocala, FL yesterday. Daisy and I went with Shelley, Jamie and Jennifer Russell. We has a blast. The guys (Dan and Gary) came later and walked through the Festival of Lights. We had a blast!

Shelley, Jamie, Daisy and Jennifer (it was about 80 degrees yesterday)
Below: the coolest animal ever

and another shot of the Giraffe


On the Carousel at Silver Springs


Jennifer getting some super attention from the Llama!


All of us after a boat ride. Daisy with the gators...
Jenn and Jamie with the gators...

Seeing Santa at Silver Springs...


Daisy is ready to play in the snow in Colorado!!!

Tuesday, December 12

My thoughts & Furball

So I was thinking today, could it be that I am not a crazy person with severe anger issues? Could it be that she is becoming more difficult to handle? Before I knew when I was frustrated it was me that needed to relax. It's just baby stuff (why did she barf on the outfit I just put on her? Why is she spitting out her peas...all over me? Why can't I do what I want when I want just with a baby in tow? BECAUSE SHE IS A BABY!) But now...not that I can't say she is a toddler...but I DO know that she does know better sometimes. And it makes it worse. But I will still continue to pray for patience as I mother this sweet baby Daisy.

I was just reminiscing today about the brief period in which the Cagle family owned a cat. I am not sure how it came up and why we even got one. Especially due to the fact that Scott and I were terrified of dogs (sad story of me being knocked over in my walker as a baby by a HUGE neighbor dog...and then I talked Scott in to the fear). I remember it well, though. We went to the humane society to get it. It was orange and white with blue eyes. We all drove in the Sprint to get it (Dads car at the time. Actually it was more like a family dune buggie, roller skate, and/or death trap). We were kicking around names for the cat. Scott suggested we name it "Mike Cagle". Scott has always been funny. Hilarious. We finally settled on "Furball." Until just recently I never realised why adults would laugh when we would tell them our cats name. I thought it was a serious name. Anyway, Mom said Scott and I proved to have the same fear of Furball as we did dogs. She said the cat would be in the garage and she would have to carry me to the car, then Scott and then Julie the toddler would be petting the kitty. Hahahah. Also, one time Scott came down stairs with this HeMan sword and 2 pairs of sweatpants (it was a kitten and it would climb our legs with its claws sometimes. This did not help with out unreasonable fear of the cat). Mom decided then that having a cat was silly. So a family at church took Furball to their house. They changed his name to "Rocky" and I was a little offended. Anywho...I just remembered that funny story and wanted to share it.

Monday, December 11

Seeing Santa

Daisy went to see Santa for the second time in her life. As most of you know, we saw Santa last year in our Village Community. Sonya was the planner and told us about it. This year we did the same and took her to see Santa in good ole Camp Tanglewood. I was up for it since I just wanted a pic with her and Santa for the scrapbook....happy or not (have you heard of moms making their kids play t-ball cause they found some super cute scrapbook stickers for t-ball? this is along those lines.....) :) . I got one...not happy. Oh well. But this way it is free and if she freaks it's no biggie. And this year, Dan made a huge strategic move by walking her through exactly what would happen when we went to see Santa. Role play included. And it worked! She walked right up to him and sat down. I could not believe my eyes! Later on she even wanted to go back and see him. So we all did. (By the way, does Santa look familiar from one pic to the next? It's the same maintenance man volunteer...and same running shoes.) Daisy saw many of her friends there who also saw Santa. I tried to get a group pic. These are some of the sweet children that we play with outside. We have great neighbors.








Merry Christmas to everyone! (and thanks for posting comments! I love that!)



Santa gave Daisy a gift. It was bubbles! She loves bubbles. She did have a hard time blowing them though. :)

It has been 75 degrees here in the last few days. We played outside in t shirts today! Gotta love Florida. :)

Saturday, December 9

"THIS (annoyed face...pause....). THIS is what's hard."

OH man. This entry is for therapy as much as to share my life with those who care. I finally had one of those moments as a parent that you hear about but can't understand fully until you are in it.

Let me start by explaining the title. My funny Aunt Jan had an experience in a store in the mall one time. (BTW--she is the type to make a simple everyday story SO HILARIOUS...so if you don't almost wet yourself reading this, then you may have to meet her and hear it for yourself). She went with her teenage daughters to buy jeans. The girl in the store helping her was a bit of a drama queen. While she was helping my family, she was watching another girl in the store. With a sulk on her face she began to confide in my Aunt Jan, "THIS....THIS (pointing to the girl she was watching) is what's hard." And she went on to explain the drama of her ex boyfriend bringing in his new girl to the store and how hard it was on her...all the while my Aunt Jan saying, "Oh, I am so sorry....(pause) ...Caroline, do you like those jeans you have on?" Again, I cannot do the story justice in my blog. But we use this phrase a lot in my family when things are frustrating.




Any who...yesterday was actually a great day over all. We had a play date in the morning which was fun. Daisy was sweet and played well as usual. She took a pretty good nap. Things were fine (though I wish I would have napped with her). It was in the afternoon and we were in the den. My phone rings and its a friend from church. As each of you mothers know (and probably those who are not mothers) when you get on the phone the kid loses control. She starts yelling over and over "MAMA UP! (pick me up) MAMA UP!" So of course I can't hear a darn thing. So I say, "Can you hold on just a minute?" and say "Daisy, Mama is on the phone. I will pick you up in one minute." I started back on the phone and the screaming got louder....meanwhile my phone beeps like I have another call. So I click over and its the insurance lady wanting to discuss a fender bender I was in on Halloween. Daisy is still freaking out! Nothing I do in mime or by way of food will calm the child! I can't hear anything and the lady I am speaking with is not amused that I am not giving her my full attention. If I could just get 3 minutes of quiet where I could hear this lady...... I tried to walk to the other end of the room (not far but thought it would help)...she follows...at top volume. So I walked upstairs. She followed. When she arrived I put up the baby gate and then went in my room and shut the door. Yes, I could hear her. Yes, she was trying to get in. Yes, I was angry. But I could finally hear the insurance lady who said, "It seems this accident is going to be your fault, Mrs. Jones." UGH!!!! Are you kidding me? He backed into me! He was not in my rear view!!!! Ugh...NOT a good combo in this situation. Finished that very ridiculous conversation and opened the door. Daisy was STILL screaming. I MEAN I HAVE NEVER BEEN SO FRUSTRATED AS A MOM.
I know she is a toddler. But I also know that she is starting to push limits. She needs to know that just cause she is a hysterical mess does NOT mean that I will stop what I am doing cause she wants to be held right then! And why doesn't she want to be held the other 11 hours and 40 minutes of her waking time? why is it ONLY when I am on the phone??? I have to say that yesterday was the first day I just wanted to cry. I was frustrated and mad and then felt guilty for being mad at a 22 month old. I mean I was even kinda holding a grudge at dinner. I seriously have had to pray about this and try to get over it.

I actually know why this happened. I have been praying that God will use his Spirit in me to use my tongue appropriately and for good. Not for negativity, not for gossip, not for insults, or yelling at my child, or anything but building others and encouraging. James 3 talks about the taming of then tongue. Its my verse of focus in this struggle. I heard Beth Moore say that if we are misusing this powerful tool (the tongue) then God may be hesitant to use it for his good. I don't want God to be hesitant with me. I want him to have full reign. Satan knew that and I felt attacked and fell to it yesterday. I am sure you are all thinking "sheesh Mel, you have an anger issue" since this seems so small to be so frustrated about. I hope I don't. But I just needed to vent. And could always use prayers. :)

On a lighter note, Daisy did do some sweet things yesterday (I can't even believe these are going in the same blog post...God is powerful.). She is learning to navigate the stairs. She goes up and down them alone in many different ways (with supervision of course). She always says, "Daisy do it!" or "Bring blanket/or doll and Daisy do it!" when I try to take her down when we are in a hurry. When we were coming down the stairs yesterday it was after her nap and I guess she was tired. She stopped at the top of the stairs and looked at me a few stairs down. She reached for me and said, "Mama bring Daisy." I thought that was cute. (yes, this took place before the 30 minutes from H-E-double hockey sticks).

And she is cracking me up with this play camera she has. She wants us to take pics of her with it and she is actually posing for us. SO FUNNY. I tried to get her to do the same when I got my camera out. Not so lucky. But here are some pics. (please excuse this outfit...no, it does not match. But when we stay home I let her pick the clothes. Aunt Julie, don't be sad). :)
"CHEESE!!!"

___________________________________________________________________


These pics are the ones my Aunt Judy took of my family over Thanksgiving. I love them. I wanted to share them with you.




Caroline, Elizabeth, Julie and Me on Turkey Day.

Tuesday, December 5

please comment!

If you are reading I want to know. Please post comments at the bottom of my posts. It will probably want you to sign up to blogger but just do it. :) Its free and who knows...maybe one day you too will blog. But you can use the user name to post comments. Actually I think my Aunt Jan commented as "anonymous" (no blogger name?) and it worked. So try that. I would love some comments and feed back from those who are reading. Thanks!

Monday, December 4

Christmas at Campus

The Jones Family Christmas Picture from the Party Naphtali, Nate, Me and Dan at the Par-tay

We had our young marrieds Christmas party last night. A good time was had by all. We went to Tim and Kala's neighborhood club house. It was very nice and perfect for a party. It started at 7 but there was free babysitting (THANKS SO MUCH TO FELICIA, JENN, CHRIS, & PAUL) so we took the Daisy. She did great. She loved playing with Carson and "baby Caleb." She was up till 10 but slept well when we got her in bed. WOO HOOO!

Let's see....the latest on Daisy. She has been talking more and more. Last night she said, "OH! Mus-keeto on uh chin!" And we turned around and sure enough...Dan killed a mosquito on her chin. Pretty funny. And when I dress her in the morning she is opinionated about what she wears. Then once I get the "right" outfit on her she says, "I -ook in a mirror." HA! And she loves to say, "eess is so fun!(this is so fun!)." She still loves her Daddy and follows him everywhere! When he is getting ready in the morning she will stay within inches of him. While he gets dressed ("Look Mama! Daddy naked buns!"), while he wets his crazy bed head ("look Mama! Daddy uh wet!"), while he eats, ("Bite Dad! On mo bite as all?" (one more bite and that's all?)). All this talking is getting clearer and clearer. "Sit down Mom! Read uh book!" And the latest thing that cracks us up is we will ask her "what do you want for lunch?" And she will say "uuummmm....-et's see...ummm...how 'bout..." and then whatever she wants. She has heard that before. :)

***CHEESE ALERT!*** And I have to take this time to say that I have an amazing husband. And this is my blog and I can write what I want so I don't feel bad about bragging. :) BUT...he is so great with Daisy. SHE LOVES HIM (and I love that!..break for me!) and he is so fun and patient with her. He doesn't freak out to have her alone. He changes diapers as much as I do (when he is home). He can feed her and bath her and puts her down. And it's such a great break for me. And I love that he backs me up when she does not listen to me (which is often). "Daisy you need to do what mama says right now." "Be a good girl for mama today." And of course she hops to it for him. :) My Dad was always the "long arm of the law" for my mom. Now I realise that he was scoring some major brownie points! Dan is always willing to be with her no matter how bad his day was at work. What a great Daddy. What a man. I have to pat him on the back for being a super Dad and husband. :) I don't know who to thank...my in-laws (I do credit them for a large part of this behavior!)? Myself for making a stellar choice in a spouse? hahaaha or how about Dan? yeah....Thanks, my Daniel. I love you.

(Below: Dan and Daisy playing in the den)

Thursday, November 30

Good Tidings in Tanglewood

I have always been guilty of decorating for Christmas ASAP after Thanksgiving. Poor Dan. We have actually pulled into town and gone straight to Lowe's to get a Christmas tree. I just love it. It's all so warm and cozy. I love the music, the lights, the cards, the decorations, the food, the parties...all of it. So when we came home on Sunday (since it was early) we started the decorations. First we took the Daisy and went to Lowes. Daisy ran around the trees while we searched for the best one. We got a Frasier Pine and tied it to the Honda. When we got it home and set it up we realised we had chosen a rather slender tree. We thought the branches would "fall" with gravity. But no...lets just say "full" will never be a word to describe this tree. Oh well. Atleast it smells amazing! We pulled out all the boxes and turned on Harry Connick Jr Christmas CD. Seeing as how most years this process involves some type of tension, I dont think Dan is a huge fan (but what men are?). But I think this is just something he has decided he will do along with me to make me happy. We have had some serious wars about colored lights vs. white lights and apples (fake) on the tree or no apples. But this year we both worked hard for it to be fun. I think after 5 1/2 years we have found a common ground. I started handing him things to place around the house to decorate and he looked back at me with a blank look. He said, "I dont think this is a job you want me to do." Hahahaha...so he hung the lights outside. :) We had a great time. We stayed up late getting it all in place. And about 1 hour after we went to bed Daisy starting crying and had thrown up all in her bed. This whole night was a virus saga. None of us got much sleep. But she is much better now.


Wednesday, November 29

Black Friday

Ahhh, Black Friday. One of the greatest days of the year. Not because I find the greatest deals (like a $5 crock pot at Walmart), or I like fighting the crowds, or that I love to browse for a parking spot for 15 minutes only to be thrilled to find one in the very last spot in the lot. But because its the BIGGEST shopping day of the year and its an excuse for me to go! This year both families have decided to not do gifts. Well there are a few exceptions here and there but for the most part we are off the hook. I had no real agenda for Black Friday except for myself and how to best spend my November (and maybe December a little early) fun money. I got some great half price deals at Joannes. And Hobby Lobby had half off of the scrapbook stickers (danger DANGER!). Mom and Jules were with me. Jules has gift cards to every store in America and still didnt get that much. Mom is super bargain shopper. Dad gave Jules and I specific instructions to go with her to get a new bed. They got one of those you can regulate each sides firmness or softness. Now I want one. I will put that on my "post school and post just out of school" list of things to get (along with a sprayer for the kitchen sink, dark carpet that doesn't show stains, in home washer and dryer, a home that doesnt smell like cat pee or cigarette smoke, a garage...). So...the girls shopped and the boys kept Daisy.

The next day was the boys day. They played tennis and then lounged. Hilariously we went shopping again, but this time with the Daisy. :) The rest of the weekend was great. Mom had made a list of all the foods we each loved and made each thing at some point during the weekend. We played Nertz (a card game) and that was a ton of fun (was it fun cause Julie and I kicked tail both times we played? or cause we all laughed alot and Blake was hilarious? hmmmmm). We watched football, went thru myspace looking for high school friends, cars were washed, we all wrestled with with Scott atleast once, ate white donuts, carseats were cleaned, oh and I got to sleep late thanks to Jiji and Papa. It was GREAT. I wanted to go to Dads new office! Next time I guess. We had to leave early on Sunday morning and couldnt stay for church so we would miss traffic that day. We only hit one bad spot about 45 min from home. Thankfully it wasnt as bad as 2-3 extra hours like last year. (A note about the pics...I am fondly referred to as Olan...yes Olan Mills because I take too many pics. The one of Scott is him showing us his manly chest hair. Revenge is sweet Scottie...call me olan mills, I'll show you...). :)

Tuesday, November 28

Turkey Day with the Cokers

We headed to Atlanta on Wednesday evening when Dan was done with work. On the way there Daisy barfed all over herself. We don't know what happened. Hopefully she is not going to be as carsick as me. So about an hour from home we pulled over to clean that mess enough to get us home. Poor Dais. But afterward she fell asleep in the car which is a miracle (or a virus).

Thursday we went to my Nanny and Granddaddy's new house in Cumming, GA. It is a beautiful house and still has the Nanny's house feel to it. I love that. They moved there just weeks before we all came. They had it all decorated and broken in and like home. We all hung out and caught up on each others lives....like...what hilarious happened with Jan? what the Oprah show was like for Judy and Phil, who Caroline is dating today (& the college saga continues), what elections the Pruitt kids won, Jims job at Hobby Lobby (I love that store!), Judy and Phil's latest story on selling houses to those in the great state of Arkansas (go Hawgs), and poor Brendas jaw pain (hope that has gotten better!). The meal was SO GOOD as usual. You should have seen the kitchen after everyone had eaten. As my family would say "It looks like the locust came through!" :) It was such a yummy meal. The afternoon consisted of football, a walk around the neighborhood that involved most of the family (looked like the Exodus when we all started out), desserts, talking , family pictures, family singing from the hymnals, and napping. That night was wrapped up with an extended episode of Grey's Anatomy. All the girls huddled on the couch for the viewing. It was great fun. Here are some pics of that day:

You may be wondering why there is not a whole family pic of the Cagles. Well the best ones were taken by the unofficial (or maybe official!) family photographer Aunt Judy. But I don't have those yet. Don't you worry. When I do, you will know. :)

Visiting the Turkey (no, not you Granddaddy)

I am playing catch up with the blog posts. But I have several pics and events to share...so get ready! On Wednesday before Thanksgiving we had a little playgroup with some of our neighbors. We went to Sarah and Lana's house. The kids (Daisy, Sofia, Lana, and Jacob) all played while I helped Sarah to prepare for her big crowd coming for Thanksgiving. One of my jobs was peeling boiled eggs for deviled eggs. Unfortunately for Sarah I stink at that job...how hard can it be? But I tore most of the ones I peeled. Oh well. All this to explain that we took a little field trip to the big blow up Turkey outside the Tanglewood office. It was Francisca (Sofia's cousin) and I with three toddlers (all about to be 2). It was like herding cats to get them there. :) Here's a pic of that adventure:

Wednesday, November 22

Potluck



We had a potluck here in Tanglewood last night. A small corner of the building was invited to promote getting to know your neighbors. Well, there were only 3 families there including us. And the other 2 families we know quite well. :) But that actually made it pretty fun. We hung out and ate with Sebastian, Paula, Sergio, Sebastian (the son), Ricky, Rodrigo, Tracy, Sofia and also Thomas and Pam (who are on staff at Tanglewood). We had a great meal. I took chicken pot pie and rice. Daisy ran around and played with Sofia and the boys. It was fun. I meant to take pics. But I am going to have to use old pics to show those that were there.


Below is Paula and her boys at the Halloween festival. Sergio, Ricky and Sebastian are always so sweet to play with Daisy.



And then there is Sofia. Daisy loves to play with sofia. Here is a pic of them painting this summer (and maybe Traci's foot?).


Monday, November 20

Mondays

Well, usually they are packed. And I guess this one was. We had a MOPS play date at the play area at the mall @ 10. There were many moms there and tons of kids. They have a TV with a Christmas movie playing in it just outside the play area. BAD IDEA. All the kids kept running out of the enclosed play place to watch the movie. That was Daisy's excuse 5 of the 10 times she escaped. :) She had a small melt down about eating her snack. Apparently food is not allowed in the play area so she had to sit and eat. It just about killed her. She loved playing with "baby Caleb" (as she calls him), Reid, Riley, Chase, and all the others. We ate at Chickfila in the mall with some friends. My friend Megan gave me a gift card that she swore she would never use that was $20 to Cloud 9! I mean twenty bucks to a spa....I can find SOMETHING to do with it. :) And she also is giving us some toys she doesn't want anymore. One of which is what we wanted to get Daisy for Christmas. Yes! "Santa's" work is done. :) Wasn't that so kind of Megan? What a woman. And then as we were leaving the mall I noticed there was NO line at all for a pic with Santa. I actually walked in the area where the line should be and then decided to leave. I thought there will probably be something with Santa at the village and I can get a pic there that will be free! (Dan, how about a pat on the back for that! Did I do good on that, or what?) So as I was leaving Daisy, my precious almost 2 year old was screaming....NO, I see Sah-cause.....Sah-cause!" (Santa Claus). I didn't even know she knew him so well. She cried all the way to the car, while I buckled her in, and about 10 minutes down the road. Unreal. Then home for a nap. Later today some UF students came by (previously arranged) to do a Denver 2 exam on Daisy. They were sweet girls. Daisy performed like a champ. They said according to the test she was "advanced." She identified all her colors, identified pictures, stacked blocks 6 tall, threw the ball, named her friends in the village (ricky, jacob, karol....), and whatever else. I guess that's all about our day. No pics today. Sorry so boring. :)

Sunday, November 19

Preacher Man's Party



Last night we had a dinner to celebrate the birthday of our friend and preacher Eric Brown. He requested roast, mashed potatoes, and chocolate cake. We also had green beans, a yummy salad, sister schuberts yeast rolls, and sweet tea. I think he enjoyed it. The Mittens and Haydens were in attendance as well. We all (including the whole church) love Eric Brown. He is so gifted in preaching. He can step on your toes and then have you thanking him for doing it. God is really using him here in Gainesville.And as for Daisy...her Sunday school teacher remarked about how smart she was for knowing her colors. :) I didn't know that was smart. I don't remember trying to beat it in her head...but I guess she did it in spite of me. She knows many colors: brown, red, blue, yellow, purple, pink, green, or-nange, and white. That makes me a proud mama! She can sing some of the ABC's, twinkle twinkle little star, and others. She is getting better with stairs. She navigates our playground pretty good these days. I can't totally sit and watch yet...but she is getting there. I don't have to help as much as I used to. She loves the CD's in the car with her name sung on them. One is Barney and one is Veggie Tales. She requests them often. I get a little burned out on them. But when one of the songs is "God is so good" and they sing "God is so good to Daisy and me" I can't resist. When we sing that outside the car she knows it's a song from her CD.

One more note...remember how Friday was laundry day? Well so was Saturday since Daisy threw up all over Dan. We don't know what was wrong. She woke up from her nap and was unusually fussy and wouldn't eat (even though she had already skipped lunch). And then we saw her breakfast again all on poor Dan. He handled it well. They jumped in the bath and then we did a load to wash all the throw up clothes, rugs, jeans, pillows... seemed like she was hitting like a 3 foot radius. :) In the chaos when we washed Dans jeans we didn't check his pockets well enough and washed his cell phone. Ugh. So he runs to T-Mobile and the guy there just turned it on. It worked fine! hahaha. It survived a wash and dry! Unreal. It's one of the cheap free Nokias. But the way to go if you are accident prone. :) Since then Daisy has been fine. Thank you God!