Thursday, December 25, 2008

8 months

Merry Christmas bloggers!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

she just got a letter

A few days ago, we received a letter in the mail addressed to Miss Thang. And she was most excited to see it.

"Dear Reese, the elves and I have been very busy but I really wanted to write to you.

I checked my list twice and saw that you have been a very good girl this year.

Because you've been good, I'm bringing you a very special present!

Keep up the good work and have a Merry Christmas."

Thanks Uncle Fred for making sure Santa had our address!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

rockin around the christmas tree...

Last night was our final girls Bible study of the year, so of course, we had to go out with a bang. The girls all decided to dress up for the party. As a self-proclaimed Queen of Dress Up, I was not to be outdone. I wore a magenta bridesmaid dress circa 1983 complete with a puffy-sleeved overlay jacket courtesy of my dear mom.

Oh yes, I did.

As I waltzed out of my room sporting the entire ensemble, Reese looked at me like I'd lost my cotton-picking mind. It could have been the bright blue eye shadow or the hair piece I wore when I got married. I do believe if she knew how to dial the phone, she'd have had child services at our house pronto, pleading with them to send this crazy woman away. Or maybe she just wanted to eat my sparkly scarf.

Either way, there was a party to be had.

We played several games. The prizes included Coca-Cola lip gloss, Fun-Dip, and anything with a picture of the Jonas Brothers on it.

I don't care how old you are, if a party includes food, that's where you will find us.

The mandatory end of the night group picture.

Now I have to get back to picking up empty water bottles and vacuuming up sequins. :)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

fa, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la

We've decked our halls! Well, to be more accurate, we've decked the mantle, our tree, and a wall with boughs of Michael's merchandise, fa, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la.

I call this my dollar tree garland.

It's pre-lit from Target and cost $10. Everything on it was less than a dollar.

I bought this from the boy scouts back in November, and it's still alive! If that's not a Christmas miracle, I don't know what is!

My mom and I made this last year. And by made, I mean she put the stuff on the wreath, and I determined whether or not to keep it that way. :)

One of my beautiful nativity sets.

My nativities are my favorite decorations.

And while we're on the subject of favorites, this is Daniel's. The Chiefs might not have a prominent place in the standings, but they forever will on our tree and in our hearts.

This is Baby's favorite Christmas item. Singing + dancing + barking + vibrating = Baby Girl bliss.

Didn't get your fill of Christmas decorations? Check out this post. Click on any of the names and before you know it, you're walking around their house checking out all their decorations. It's a Christmas open house, internet style!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

makay's here

This sweet baby is Mary Kathryn. AKA MaKay. AKA Reese's new BFF. :) She was born late last night to a couple of our favorite friends who are also volunteer small group leaders with the youth. We went to the hospital today to meet her. She's even sweeter in real life. We can't wait for her to pack on some pounds so she can hang out with Baby Girl. Because, bless her heart, if our daughter rolled on her, or whomped her with a toy, it could cause some serious friction in the friendship.

Aw. It seems like only yesterday Lovey was this little...when we lived in three hour segments and wacked out anytime she made so much as a bizarre snort.

One of these Hintons left the hospital showing initial symptoms of baby fever. That person shall remain nameless.

But care to wager who it was anyway? :)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

christmas pics that didn't make the cut

You know, it's really starting to concern me that our baby is lacking in personality. She's so very shy and reserved.

Squeeze it baby. Show that ornament who's boss.

Hmm. I've never tasted metal before.

Yeah, you know, I'm not too crazy about it.

Ooo, that camera looks good. Let me at it.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

book learning

This past weekend Danny and I traveled to Dallas for a weekend seminary class. He's about halfway through his masters degree. He's had many classes both in Dallas and online, but this weekend's was different. Wives were invited to tag along. And I wasn't about to miss out on all the learning!

We flew in my mom to watch the baby while we were in class. I'm so glad she came because I was able to focus on the lectures. Dang were they good. The professors are tenured at Dallas Theological Seminary. You'd think with how intelligent, published and renowned they are they'd be some of the most intimidating people walking around. That's what I assumed.

Surprisingly, I couldn't have been more wrong. Dr. Lawson and Dr. Edwards are the picture of theology transforming reality. The only thing that surpassed their knowledge of scripture was their authenticity. It was apparent from the get go that they know all about God, and they know God. The class was over way too soon.

I never thought I'd say it, but it's a good thing seminary is so expensive. Otherwise I'd be enrolled by now and we'd have to relocate my mom to Dallas. :)

Baby and her Nana had some great bonding time. Dan snagged us a steal of a deal on a hotel. Have you ever heard of Priceline? We paid $40 a night to stay in a five star hotel. The room was beautiful!

Saturday night we went to a restaurant in Dallas. It's where Jack Ruby ate just before assassinating Lee Harvey Oswald.

We left early Sunday morning to make it back in time for youth. Poor Dan. We calculated in the past six weeks, he's driven more than 5,000 miles! Thank goodness Reester and I joined in for just a few of those trips; there aren't enough Mum-mums in the world to make it that long!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

would you like a good laugh?

Hope this cracks you up. It sure worked on her daddy. Please excuse our messy house.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

tooth watch 2008 update

The Hinton home is on high alert, anxiously awaiting the newest arrival in Baby Girl's mouth. I would point out that we need help, but if you've visited here enough, that goes without saying.

At this time, I will enter into evidence three instances leading us to believe First Tooth is on its way.

Exhibit #1

This picture was taken over Thanksgiving. It captured the hook-yourself-with two fingers habit she picked up a couple of weeks ago. She gets those fingers in there and gnaws away.

Exhibit #2- Verbatim of a conversation between Daniel and me that occurred last week.
D- While playing with Reese on the bed, "Ow!"
R- "What's wrong?"
D- "I think she might have a tooth in there."
R- "Why's that?"
D- "Because that stinkin' hurt!"
R- "Hahahahahaha!"

Exhibit #3
Our faithful sleep through the night baby woke up screaming in pain three nights in a row while we were in KC last week. Daniel immediately went to the nearest Target and purchased the biggest bottle of Infant Tylenol he could find.

we're thankful

I feel like a bit of a slacker having let so much time lapse since the last time I posted. Until I consider that we didn't return home from KC until almost midnight Sunday. Yesterday was spent keeping my head above the ever increasing mounds of laundry just long enough to look in the fridge and realize that unless we plan on living on a diet of Ranch dressing and chicken broth, I've got to get to the store. Plus we have four semi-big youth events to plan, diapers to change, Christmas cards to send, gifts to buy...

Did December happen to blindside anyone else?

We had a good trip. Reese did incredibly well in the car. I hesitate using the words break or vacation because neither are an accurate description of the weekend.

Most of it was spent driving from one family to the next. Please hear me, we are incredibly grateful for each person in our family. Not only are they all still with us, but they all long to see us and bend over backwards to make it happen. Reese will know of love because of them. She has seven grandparents who are crazy about her and we thank God for every single one of them.

Still, it's always hard to load up the car and leave dinner early in order to make it to the next location. I can't help but feel a twinge of guilt and sadness. I feel like everyone gets a little jipped in the process. I teased Dan that for Christmas we should just hire a taxi service to drive Reese from one place to the next while we go to a hotel. :)

I took a ton of pictures, but I only have time to upload a few, due to all that laundry, food, baby, job stuff I mentioned earlier.

Miss Thang's post. She manned it well. And she'd like to thank the makers of pacifiers and Mum-Mum crackers for making it possible.

She's thankful for her Great-Grandma Nadine (or "Adine" as I use to say).

Celebrity baby.

Somebody's going to have to break it to her that the world does not revolve around her, and I'm afraid it's gonna have to be me.

She was unable to participate in the annual Turkey Bowl. Next year, she should be good to go. And the first-born team needs all the help it can get. They got worked this year by the middle children for the fourth year straight!

Lining up for a family picture.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

7 months

I guess one month is all it takes for a lamb-devouring carnivore to become a full blown termite. :)

Monday, November 24, 2008

six month list

Hello Baby Girl,
It has been five days since Daddo went out of town. He's on his way back as I type (woohoo!). In honor of your last day as a six-month old (how can that be?) I've compiled a list of things I'd like to remember about you. Give me a couple of months and they'll have disappeared in the abyss of my terrible memory.

At six months old...

*You go to bed at 9:00pm and wake up around 7:00am. You have to have your CD playing at night or you won't sleep. You also take three naps a day.
*You've never cried (no, not once!) when I've dropped you off at school or the nursery.
*You still love your swing. We turn it to the highest level. It's slowing down as you get bigger.
*You wear clothes that are 9-12 months in size.
*You have no teeth.
*You love to sit up while you play. You just started rolling over consistently. You desperately want to crawl.
*You eat oatmeal, sweet potatoes and carrots. You'll eat anything that I put in your mouth, and you are not partial to temperature. We'll be adding more food soon.
*You yank off immediately anything that's on your feet. You leave your hair accessories alone.
*You sleep in a sleep sack. One night I accidentally left a tube of ointment zipped up in there. I found it the next morning.
*You love everyone. You smile easily and if someone tickles your legs, you burst into a fit of giggles.
*You prefer to be out and about. All day at home makes for a cranky girl.
*You just figured out how to leap in your jumper seat we hang from the doorway. You point your feet mid-air and it makes me dream of the day you might take up dancing.
*Music of any sort captures your attention and brings a smile to your face.
*You like to play with mail, straws and all the hair you can grab.
*You love riding in your stroller.
*You talk all the time. Sometimes you sing softly to yourself. When you're playing you like to test the strength of your vocal chords. Your happy banter sounds like a cross between a raptor dinosaur and a screech owl. It makes me crack up every time. You've said "Dada" and "Mama". We're still waiting for you to say it on purpose. :)
*People stop us out in public to tell us how beautiful you are. (Like we need any reminder!)

So there you have it Baby Girl. Tomorrow, I'll get out the lamb, write seven months on a piece of paper and take your picture. You won't be six months old anymore. But you'll still be one of the best things that ever happened to us. Who knew my fallen little heart could love like this? I know God doesn't make mistakes. I can't think of any other reason why He gave you to us, except of course, for His grace. He's just that great.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

high school retreat

We did back to back retreats this year. Last weekend was the middle school, this time around it was our high school kids. We loaded up the bus and took them to southern Missouri.

Here's the beast of a vehicle Daniel drove for six hours each way. He got his bus license soon after the church purchased it. Is there anything he can't do?

The high ropes course is a highlight of the trip every year. Here are some of the kids getting ready to climb.

Last year, I couldn't climb due to my condition. Something about growing a baby and flying down a zip line don't mix well. This year, I was good to go!

The best part of the trip came on the last day. We drove through Columbia on the way back to eat lunch at Chipotle and play football on the astro turf. Look who was there to greet us.

He is one handsome little man. So tiny! Holding him gave my arms a break from hauling around Baby Girl.

Apparently, she was just fine with that. There was a big cousin to keep her entertained.

And entertain they did. Of all the toys that were there, it was Manda's sunglasses they loved best. That's women for you.

The photo contest is still going on. If you'd like to vote for Reester, click here. Thanks bloggers!

chicken little competes

*Update* If you voted, please vote again. They started the votes back at zero because two pictures were left out. Thanks!

Hello bloggers. Reese is in her first competition. I entered her in a fall photo contest over at the Siesta Blog. As it stands, we're getting whooped by Natalie in NC. And Jeannie from WA is hot on our tail.

And while I'm sure campaigning for your picture on your own blog is bad form, I ain't too proud to beg.

As soon as school gets out, we're sounding the alarm to the youth, "Rally for the Rooster!" (Youth ministry has its perks at times.)

Poor Dan doesn't know what to do with me. He asked me this morning what the prize was.


Seriously, I don't think the winner gets anything. Except the satisfaction and reiteration that Chicken Little is the cutest baby to peck the planet.

If you want to help her clench the victory click here. Scroll through all the pictures, and vote for your favorite *cough Chicken Little cough*. That's it!

Voting closes on Saturday.

By then I'm sure I'll be on the road, U-Haul in tow, traveling around the country living vicariously through baby beauty pageant after baby beauty pageant. And in 15 years, Reese will appear on a WE reality show explaining how her mother's meltdown all began with a fall photo contest.

Monday, November 17, 2008

car post

I'm writing this post from my cellular device in the car. Thus two things are implied. One, if this post even makes it to the blog, nothing short of a miracle has occurred. Two, due to the tiny key board and the lack of spell check, the spelling mistakes are imminent. Emenint? M&Ment? (See.) Originally the title was "car poat." Heaven help me. Bless my heart. In a few hours we'll return home from the high school fall retreat. Someone in the back seat is this close to getting a tooth. We had to stop at the nearest Infant Tylenol distribution center before hitting up our third McDonald's of the weekend. Which by the way were all the nicest McDonald's I've ever seen complete with flat screen TV's, couches and video games in the Play Place. I'll leave you on that note. If I type any more I'll be that much more miffed when it fails to upload from my phone. I'll be back later with stories from the retreat. And oh yes, there will be pictures. TTYL, brb, lol.

*PS* No bloggy miracle happened. My phone let me save the post but not publish the post. We strive never to mislead you here at the Hinton Home Blog.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

jammie day

Today was PJ day at Reese's school. Is there anything better than wearing your jammies all day long?

Ah, yes. Time with Daddy.

She loves her some Daddy.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

middle schoolers

This past weekend we took about 40 people on our middle school fall retreat. We drove a couple of hours away and spent the weekend playing in the woods. There was worship, Bible study, sports, crafts and a high ropes course that kept us occupied.

For the record, I love middle school kids. My first job was entirely junior high ministry. I was smitten.

Since then, I just can't get enough of them. They are up for anything. They're old enough to process complex concepts yet young enough to be impressionable. They carry baggage of adult variety but generally, they're not yet hardened...a typical symptom of those who have been in the world a little longer. And they are hysterical.

For whatever reason, I think middle school students are fabulous. They're a highlight of our ministry.

When trekking through the wilderness it's important to be hydrated and accessorized with favorite toys. Not only do they look good, they make excellent companions.

Our fearless leader. Rugged. Handsome. And fiercely loyal to his tigers.

Hello cute girls. I heart you.

Pay attention to the instructions now. Lest you fall from the rock wall and plummet to earth.

Chalk this one up as yet another reason is should be fall all year long.

Go Gandolf go! Have I explained that a prerequisite for entering youth group is a having a nick name of some sort? If you don't have one upon arrival, you will when you leave. Most kids have about 10 names that continue to evolve into others.

Middle school girls, I heart you with all my love. That's me on the far right. If you have time, click on this picture. It should come up bigger so you can truly appreciate the expression on each girl's face. They'll make you smile. Works for me every time.