Sunday, December 18, 2011

Brothers In Arms

Sometimes being a brother is even better than being a superhero. 
~Marc Brown


Most of these pictures are moments I just happened to catch with my cell phone.
I love their relationship. Alex does everything Zack does, loves the things Zack loves, Alex says what Zack says (Zack has even taught him how to talk like Yoda).
And Zack is incredibly sweet and patient with Alex and loves him right back.
I sure love these two little men of mine and I hope they are always best friends!



A brother shares childhood memories and grown-up dreams




A brother is a friend provided by nature.
~Legouve Pere



There is a destiny that makes us brothers,
no one goes his way alone;
all that we send into the lives of others, 
comes back into our own.
~Edwin Markham




“There’s no other love like the love for a brother.
There’s no other love like the love from a brother.”
~Astrid Alauda




All for one and one for all.
My brother and my friend.
What fun we have. The time we share.
Brothers 'til the end.



Monday, November 21, 2011

Thanksgiving Curse?

Three years ago I missed a fabulous Thanksgiving dinner with this master chef because Zack had a fever and was sick.

Last year on the day before Thanksgiving I dislocated my kneecap (and then Alex had his second hernia surgery).

Exactly two years ago today I posted about Johnny’s most recent back episode flare up. For some strange reason, we felt like THIS was our year to have a nice happy, healthy, peaceful Thanksgiving!

But man, we should have learned our lesson…

This morning Johnny moved wrong and ended up in intense pain on the floor. I knew immediately by the tone of his yell what had happened.

We initially thought it wasn’t too bad so we made an appointment with a doctor and called my friend Heather to watch the kids. (oh Heather… thank you, thank you…)

As I tried to get Johnny up to go, I quickly realized that our plan wasn’t going to work and I needed to call 911.

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Five firemen had to haul him down the stairs strapped to a chair. I’ve never seen him in so much pain and it was heartbreaking!

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In the ER they pumped him full of drugs and sent us home.

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Wednesday he gets to see the spine specialist and we hope that it will be a quick recovery. Hope!

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Happy Thanksgiving Folks!!

Friday, November 11, 2011

“When 900 years old you reach…

…look as good, you will not!” -Yoda
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Happy Halloween!
Luke & Leia Skywalker, (the twins)
Queen Amidala, (their mother)
and Yoda

Sleepy Babe

 Alex just turned two but don't be fooled by his sweet little face. The boy thinks he is four. (Though if you ask HIM, he says he's THE baby!!)

He has recently decided that he is too big to take naps. Not officially, of course, but by staging a (sort of cute) protest of singing and playing in his crib at nap time.

The result is that this little boy of mine is sleepy. Almost all the time.  (And, by golly, I sure know how he feels!!)


But when he falls asleep in the car, I get to carry him into the house and snuggle my cheeks against his cheeks and (reluctantly) tuck him into his bed.

Oh, how I love this little man of mine. I wish I could just freeze time for a little while...

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Kids Say The Darndest Things 2010

One of my favorite things that we do around here at the Russ house is the quote board where we write down the funny things the kids say. We are a little behind in getting last year's posted, but it is still great.

To read the quotes you can zoom in and out on the image below. Just click the image (not the little box in the corner) with your mouse or roll your scroll wheel, or you can use the buttons at the bottom. To see different parts, you can just drag around with the little hand, or you can drag the blue box around in the upper left corner.

Don't forget to leave us a comment and tell us what your favorites are!

In case you wanted to check out our past funniness... 2007, 2008, 2009

Also, Johnny wanted to send a shout out to Casey for hooking us up with a hosting space!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Home Maker

At the beginning of the new school year I had to fill out a lot of forms to get the kids enrolled in their new schools. We moved (again) recently and as I have been trying to get settled (again) I keep thinking about something I filled out on all those forms. There is a spot where you are required to fill in your profession…

As I filled out those forms with the word “homemaker” I was struck with the meaning of those words and I haven’t been able to get them out of my head in the months that have followed. I am a home maker. I make this home. Whatever I want it to be, that is what I make of it.

I thought of the book by Jane Clayson Johnson titled “I am a mother.” It is one of my VERY favorite books and I find her so inspiring (you should read it and reread it and give it away as gifts!!). One of the stories she tells is about being at a dinner party shortly after she had become a mother. Everyone was introducing themselves and time after time as the women stood up to introduce themselves they made excuses or seemed embarrassed and said things similar to “I don’t have a real job, I’m just a mother.” Jane talks about how she was so proud and happy to be a mother that she wanted to stand up and shout “I AM a mother”. She was previously a co-host on the CBS Early show (among many other things) but being a mother is her greatest accomplishment. It is an incredibly powerful book and her message has really stuck with me.

I am a mother and I am a homemaker.

As I have been setting up house in this new place I have been thinking about this responsibility and this “job” of mine. It is such an encompassing responsibility. It is so much more than just cleaning the house (though cleaning the house is a HUGE part of it). The furniture is where I put it and the pictures on the walls are where I hung them. 

My home is literally what I make it.

I am the example that they follow. I am the one they look to when they are scared and sad. The food I make is the stuff that helps their little bodies to grow. The songs I sing help them fall asleep at night and the words they hear echoing through their little ears as they go to school or drift off to sleep are going to be mine…

No pressure… no big deal…

We have a picture frame I bought before I had kids. I am sure I was thinking of my own mom when I bought it but now it has a picture of me and Lila in it. The words say “Our house is warm inside, because you've made it so. Everything says love to me, no matter where I go.”

I want that warmth in my home. That is the kind of home I want to make.

Zack just came in and said “Mommy, I need you…” There is no sweeter sound to me, no “job” I’d rather have than this.
Guess I better get back to “work!”

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Witch hat is Witch?

I told the kids we were going to do a Halloween craft today. They were totally excited… like screaming and jumping up and down excited. Then they asked me if we could do a countdown to Halloween like we did a countdown to Easter. I said no (because I am busy and tired and apparently I am NO fun…).
Then I felt bad.
So guess what we are doing for the next 12 days…
Thirteen Spooky Days till Halloween. Coincidence… yes. Spooky… definitely!!
The craft that had them jumping and screaming today was Witch Hats. (So easy that it made me think I can come up with 12 more Halloween crafts…)
I got the idea from something I had pinned a few weeks ago. (Please tell me you all know about pinterest… my husband even has his own account now!!)  It is WAY cuter than mine, but I just didn’t feel like food coloring the icing so we had white and the kids didn’t care AT ALL!! Keepin’ it simple, folks!!

You need Hershey’s kisses, Keebler Fudge cookies, and some icing (colored if you want to be cool.) Also, a tip… have a bowl for the kids to put their kiss wrappers in. It will definitely save you from picking up little pieces of foil off your floor.
I’m sure there is a “right” way to get that icing on your kiss, but we went for the easy way.
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I gave all the kids a cookie and a Hershey’s kiss and as I was getting the icing ready (I stuck it in the microwave for a few seconds so it would be easier to dip…) I looked over and asked Alex where his treats were…
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Witch hats. Totally yummy. Totally fun. And so easy it’s scary!
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