Monday, August 31, 2009

chica's summer vacation

This past week my dad took our little family to the mountains. Danny and I went to the Grand Tetons on our honeymoon and we couldn't wait to head back west for a little getaway. With Chica's school starting in a few weeks, I figured now is the perfect time to outline her "What I Did on My Summer Vacation" essay. The pictures should get her some bonus points.

On her summer vacation Chica....

flew across the country on an airplane with her Mom


and her Dad.


She took several walks around the resort.


She waited for the shuttle,


and tried her hand as a tour guide.


She rode a chair lift up a mountain,


and hiked to a lookout point.


Thank goodness there were notes along the way, because her mother couldn't recall what the Continental Divide was.


She checked out a rainbow,


and went rock climbing.


She took her new found love of extreme sports on a bike ride down a mountain.




Her Grandpa Ken and Uncle Jackson were there too!


She played on a playground,


played on another playground,


and perused local shops on Main Street.


There was no snow on the mountains for skiing, so she did the next best thing. Turns out you save a ton of money on lift tickets this way!

Then she came home and took a 16 hour nap. Surely she dreamed about the mountains.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

hot dog blues

You know what happens when you're tired, overwhelmed, hormonal and home-sick?


You cry over a picture of your favorite niece eating a hot dog.


And then you scour the fridge for a hot dog to make yourself feel better. :)

Friday, August 28, 2009

chica out

We're not in Kansas anymore bloggers. (I was about to call you all "Totos" but refrained to avoid hurt feelings.) We're having a grand time and will fill you in soon!

Bye for now!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

he walks with me

I love this picture of the Chica I took this past weekend. It embodies her spirit through and through.

Independent. Inquisitive. Dexterous. She's a mover and a shaker, that one.

But it also reminds me of that sweet old hymn, "In the Garden." I can't remember when I first heard that song. I know I was a child, because I loved to picture walking side by side with God, chatting it up.

Why is it when grow up we decide God is too busy to bother with little old us? Too lofty to listen and too swamped to stroll? I don't know the answer. While I go ponder on this/ask Dan/infuse "tarry" into my everyday vocabulary, I'll leave you with the lyrics while the smell of old hymnals and itch of Sunday School clothes come flooding back.

In the Garden
I come to the garden alone, while the dew is still on the roses
And the voice I hear falling on my ear the son of God discloses
And he walks with me and he talks with me and he tells me I am his own
And the joy we share as we tarry there none other has ever known

He speaks and the sound of his voice is so sweet the birds hush their singing
And the melody that he gave to me within my heart is ringing

I'd stay in the garden with him though the night around me is falling
But He bids me go through the voice of woe
His voice to me is calling

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

battle of the remote

A conversation from earlier today:

Me: "Dang, ESPN again?"

Silence

Me: "Did you know if you were King Henry VIII and I made you change the channel, you could have me beheaded?"

Dan: "Yeah."

Silence

Me: "Does that make you wish you were King Henry VII?"

Dan: "Yes."

Me: "What??"

Dan: "But I wouldn't want you beheaded, I would just want to keep my channel on."

Point taken.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

wild slide woman

While we're on the subject of slides, this one happened to be part of the garden exhibit as well.

It was the cutest thing, built right into a little hill you had to climb to get to the top. She got the hang of it pretty quickly and a couple of times she went so fast she flew right off the end of it and landed in the mulch.

(Check out that hair whipping in the wind!)

Because we're those parents and because she's our first and only child, we also have a video of this momentous occasion. Sorry it's a little Blair Witch-esque. It was shot on our top of the line phone camera.
video
Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, August 24, 2009

garden party

This weekend we took Chica up to Memphis Botanical Gardens. They have a great children's exhibit that Chica loved. Since we went on a Friday, we pretty much had the place to ourselves.

Chica loves to go places and see new things. She's a girl on the go!

We came across a tunnel slide that was about two stories high. You know those kind that spiral? Chica eyeballed that slide and it was like a moth to a flame. I took her up to the top, not realizing how small the tunnel actually was. I'm somewhat claustrophobic and you know, adult sized, so the idea of riding down together became more and more unrealistic as we approached the opening.

By this time, she was flailing around, trying to worm her way out of my arms. I yelled at Dan to stand at the bottom. Glancing around to make sure no one was watching, we made the joint decision to send her down by herself. I looked at Chica and asked her if she was sure she wanted to go down. I haven't seen a nod like that since the time she ate shredded cheese straight out of the bag.

I took a deep breath, said a quick prayer about not appearing on the evening news and gave her a little push. Before I knew it she rounded the curve and was out of sight. I waited to hear Dan scoop her up and congratulate her on how big of a girl she was.

Nothing.

*Cricket, cricket*

"Did you get her??"

"No. Do you see her??"

"No!"

Our toddler was stuck. In a two story tunnel slide. Dang. I could see the headlines now. Just as I was writing the five o'clock lead- in in my head, Baby Girl came shooting out the slide, squealing in pure delight.

Daniel scooped her up and she spun around, pointing to the top for a second go around. Quickly I climbed down and we scurried off to the next exhibit. My heart couldn't take another trip down.

And neither could my record.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

sweet CJ

When I started our little blog two years ago, I did so to keep our far away family up to date with our new and albeit, happening life. :) A week after our wedding we moved three states away from just about everyone we knew. After following my step-sister Grace's blog, I thought a blog would be just the thing to keep people who wanted our family briefings in the loop. I knew my sister and my mom would totally dig it, and if they were the only two people who chose to visit our blog, that would be just fine.

So it always catches me a little off guard when I discover more than two people actually read our stuff. One of our readers is CJ. She's a pediatric nurse who works with cancer patients. She throws one heck of a shower. And most importantly, she raised this woman.

As it turns out, CJ is one of our most faithful and generous readers. Yesterday, Chica received a package in the mail from CJ. There was a sweet card, which Chica had no problem ripping open. It cracks me up how she opens cards. She tears the envelope right in half, stripping the card bear, somehow managing to keep the innards intact. I don't know how she does it. It's a gift.

After Dan read her the card, she plunged her hands into the styrofoam peanuts, pulling out a brand spanking new book. If you want to get on Chica's good side, send her a book. (Especially if you're feeling sympathetic towards her parents who have memorized Hop on Pop, Go Dog Go and Put Me in the Zoo.) Turns out the key to memorization is reading something over and over and over again. Who knew?

Thank you CJ for such a neat book that she's sure to enjoy for many years.


And thank you for making sure Debs is current with all the blog occurences. :)

Friday, August 21, 2009

a recap in list form

Hi bloggers!
I've neglected the little blog this week for several reasons. Because it's late, I'm just going to list them for you, in no particular order. Behold, the things that prevented me from quality time in blog land.

1. Scrap Booking. Shutterfly is offering a free photo book until August 26. (FYI- The promo code is SUMMERBOOK.) When I saw that special offer, I knew I needed to make a new book. Heaven knows I take my fair share of pictures of our daughter. My problem is backing those pictures up, printing them and creating some fun way to revisit our favorite memories. A coupon for a free electronic scrapbook is the exact shot of motivation I needed to follow through in spite of my scrap booking shortcomings.

2. Scholarship Applying. Daniel is in his last year of seminary (woohoo!) This week I worked on an application and essay for a scholarship. I titled it "We Po', Need Dough." When I wasn't coming up with catchy titles, I was busy protecting the application from a certain Chica who was bound and determined to get her crayons on it. Maybe she's hoping the scholarship will be paid in string cheese!

3. Celebrity Sighting. Wednesday night, our church hosted an event with Candace Cameron Bure. Dan and I served on the evangelism team. Praise God He can use us despite our flaws. At one point while I was praying with a woman, I thanked God for speaking through "Cameron." Hopefully, He knows what I meant. :) On a more serious note, Candace Cameron. Is. Awesome. Since I'm in application mode, I'm on the prowl for the one I can fill out to be her BFF. Sign me up. She rocks.

4. Cradle Cap Scrubbing. Yes, my almost one and a half year old still had cradle cap. No, you do not want to know what cradle cap is. It is gone now, but it did not go down without a fight. A flaky, scaly, queasy battle I do not wish to relive ever again. I would take 50 diaper blowouts over cradle cap removal any day.

5. Consignment Sale Shopping. This weekend is my favorite consignment sale of the year! (Actually, it's the only consignment sale I attend. I just thought with how dramatic I was in item number four, I should add some flair to this one as well.) The sale is at a local church. More than 30,000 items were ready to be purchased and I came home with half of them. My big ticket item was a whopping $10- a FABULOUS Christmas dress from Baby Gap. I made out like a bandit. Chica had a morning date with Daddy so I could shop. Good thing he cleaned while I was gone. We'll have to put the house on the market or take out a second mortgage to make up for all the damage I did.

So that's what I've been up to bloggers. At least during my free time. What about you?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

big picture

"Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies."
Psalm 36:5

and cue "sunrise, sunset"

Do you realize this is the second time this month I've referenced Fiddler on the Roof on our little blog? I can't help it. Musicals are my happy place. Not so for Daniel. According to him, just as the plot really gets going in a musical, they have to interrupt it and start singing. I've tried to explain how really, the music enhances the story line and takes the audience to a place where no dialogue could ever venture, but alas, it's all "blah, blah, blahdiddy, blah" to him.

*Sigh*

If you haven't seen Fiddler on the Roof, what the heck are you thinking?? Just kidding. I'll allow it if you promise to go rent it. Tonight. Until then, I'll fill you in. Tevye, a Jewish milkman, is the father of five daughters. (Which by the way is the exact number and gender Daniel wants in his offspring. Heaven help me.) The song "Sunrise, Sunset" takes place at Tevye's eldest daughter's wedding. As his firstborn exchanges vows, he ponders over her life. And yes, much to Daniel's vexation, Tevye sings his reflections.

Is this the little girl I carried, is this the little boy at play?
I don't remember growing older, when did they?

When did she get to be a beauty?
When did he get to be so tall?
Wasn't it yesterday when they were small?

Sunrise, sunset, sunrise, sunset
Swiftly flow the days.
Seedlings turn overnight to sunflowers
Blossoming even as they gaze.


Now that I'm a mom, this song makes me do the ugly cry. You know why? Because Tevye was on to something. And if you don't believe me, here's some proof:

Overnight my precious little seedling...


turned into a sunflower. A cantaloupe eating, neck supporting, sitting independently sunflower.


If I've bummed you out, I'm sorry. Just click right here, and you'll be good as new.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

I hope you're having a bad day...

...because this is about to make it all better. I dare you to watch it without cracking a smile. Happy Monday!

laughing baby from Rachel Hinton on Vimeo.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

we escaped

Daniel and I just wrapped up a full weekend of work. So Wednesday night after Chica went to bed, we decided to take a grown-ups only overnight trip. (Well, technically we concocted our little getaway a few weeks ago.) Soon after Reesie went down, we high tailed it out of town, leaving Auntie Michelle and Sarah P on baby duty. We drove a few hours away to a cabin on the Spring River.


Thursday morning we slept in. My 20 year old self would be so ashamed. I only made it to 8:30. After breakfast I proceeded to take a morning nap. Chica is onto something. I could really get used to the mid-morning nap. Once my Me-Maw self felt rested, we gathered up our gear for our canoe trip. Danny and I went on a float trip with some friends several years ago and since then, I've been itching to do it again.

Since my canoeing ambition far outweighs my canoeing skills, I was a tad bummed when they told us it was too late in the day to take the six hour trip. Daniel, however, breathed a sigh of relief. He must have the gift of prophecy to have known by the time we were actually on the river, I'd paddle a few strokes then take my mandatory Cheetos break while pointing out various wildlife along the shoreline. Meanwhile, he'd be the chump in the back getting us from Point A to Point B, six hours down the river. So we opted for the shorter route.

The Spring River is beautiful and secluded, just what I was hoping for. We glided along with all the paddling technique I could remember from seventh grade physical education class. (I can't call it "gym" class because my Mom would be on the next plane down here to set me straight.) We had a cooler full of snacks and it was just the two of us. Pure heaven.

Then the rapids came.

Now Daniel and I are pretty adventurous people. We heard the rapids before we saw them and got fired up. We'd chosen the more challenging part of the river, so we were expecting some action. Just as I was scouting out the best place to aim our boat, sccrrraaaapppppeee. We had run ashore. Oh, but not along one of the banks. Right in the middle of the river. Apparently, in the Spring River, before every set of rapids is about 20 yards of shallow water. Shallow enough to scrape the back of your boat to a complete stop. Shallow enough to have to get out of your canoe and push it along while your wife giggles, attempts to paddle, realizes it's useless and eats some more Cheetos.

A few times we built up enough speed to sail right over the rapids. Those moments were glorious and exhilarating and sparse.

I could have been bitter at Pocahontas for making it look so easy in the movie. But surprisingly, I wasn't. Because I was with Daniel. And I knew we'd laugh about it later. (Heck, I was doubled over in a fit of giggles for half the trip. He took a little more convincing of the humor of the situation. Maybe it was because even though our boat continued to scrape the bottom of the river, my intake of Swiss Cake Rolls wasn't deterred in the least.)

We've been through some tough stuff. And heaven knows even harder things will come. Marriage isn't for sissies. It doesn't bring out the best, most attractive parts of ourselves we'd like to showcase. It brings out the worst. But I believe that's why God created it in the first place. He wants those deep rooted, sinful parts of ourselves we'd just love to keep hidden to rise to the surface where He can prune them. To refine us and make us look more like He does. And when all that chaff is burning away, it's nice to have someone holding your hand at the bonfire...a spouse who chooses to forgive and rejoices at what's gone. I'm so grateful I married a man who forgives me. God knew I'd need one who would.


Friday morning we ate breakfast at a local joint.


And the Husband ate a pancake bigger than his head.

The End.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

playground

The other night after dinner we made a quick family trip to a local playground. The temperature had dropped to somewhat bearable so it made the night even better.


Upon arrival, Danny unbuckled Chica from her car seat. Meanwhile, as I was gathering up my camera, this audacious character waddled over to our car. I turned around to find myself pinned against the car with the only thing standing between me and a lovely night on the playground was the world's weirdest looking duck. Seriously, what kind of duck has red eyes??

It was apparent he's used to being fed. When he realized my camera wasn't edible, he meandered around the car to the other members of my family.

Danny wasn't so much propping up Big Girl as he was preventing UFC Girl vs. Duck. Eventually, we out maneuvered him.

Chica had a lovely time playing. She's a wild, fearless woman so she kept her two parents busy. Only the biggest slides would do for her entertainment.

We'd planned to stay until bed time, but when these bad boys rolled in, we rolled out.

We'd had our fill of big slides and close encounters of the freak duck kind.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

pop quiz answer

Time's up! Pencils down bloggers. Each of you is responsible for grading your own paper.

What was Reese doing in this picture that made her Mama swell with pride?

She was watching...

Cinderelly!!!

Now. That might not seem like a huge deal to you. But when I was two years old, I watched Cinderelly four times a day. Then my mom had the nerve to limit my Cinderella intake to once a day. Something about boundaries or the tape spontaneously exploding or something.

A few weeks ago I tried, unsuccessfully, to introduce Chica to all that is wonderful and right and good in the world of cinema. She wanted nothing to do with it. Heartbroken, but not entirely deterred, Cinderella made her second Hinton home debut this past weekend. To my utter delight Chica watched and listened for almost 20 minutes! She loved any scene where Gus Gus was present. (How could you not??)
Incidentally, any time Chica's shirt comes up around her belly, I call her Gus Gus. Probably shouldn't do that much longer, huh?

When we found out Chica was a girl, Cinderella was one of the things I anticipated sharing with her. Hopefully someday we'll watch the entire thing together. I'll explain Cinderella's depth of character revealed in adversity and Chica will reply, "yeah, yeah, but look how sparkly her dress is!!"

And hey, if she picks up a love of cleaning along the way, our house will thank her. :)