Friday, June 14, 2013

SUYL: Singles; Meet Jordon!!

I am so excited to be linking up with Kelly's Korner today!  The last few times that Kelly has had Singles Day, I have thought about this girl right here:

 This is Jordon!!  She is 22 years old and a Senior Early Childhood Education Major at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro.  She will graduate in May 2014, and will officially be a teacher of young children!  She is going to be an amazing teacher!  I don't even remember the first time that I met Jordon, but I do know it was at church.  Jordon and her family have attended the same church as I do for several years.  She has the sweetest family ever!  
(Jordon is on the far right in the orange dress).


Jordon's dad is a farmer and she loves to hang out with him on the farm.  I would describe Jordon as a "girly-girl" that's not one bit afraid of getting dirty!!:)  She might be dolled up and looking adorable one second, but hanging out on the tractor or messing with animals the next (still looking adorable, of course)!
    
 Jordon's mom, Missy, was diagnosed with breast cancer a few years ago.  Jordon did everything she could to help take care of her mom and get her to appointments.  It was during that time that I realized what a special family Jordon's family was.  I don't even know if Jordon knew how many people were watching her and admiring her for her strength during that time.  Like I said, Jordon is 22, but she is so much more responsible and mature than most 22 year old girls that I know!  I'm telling you---I am 34 and when I'm talking to Jordon, I feel like I am talking to someone my age!!  I forget that there are 12 years between us!  Haha!  (Or maybe I am just in denial that I am getting OLD)!  


Jordon and her mom at Race for the Cure:)


Jordon and her brothers:)


If there is one thing that I know about Jordon, it is that she LOVES her Daddy!  Her dad has been a wonderful example of what Jordon wants to find in her future husband.  I've talked to Jordon a couple of times about dating and relationships.  It's very evident that Jordon knows exactly what she wants and I truly admire her for standing strong in that area.  Jordon is very passionate about finding someone who will be a strong Christian leader in their home.  She is looking for someone that is a hard worker, family oriented, has a good education, and loves children!

Jordon is such a fun-loving girl!  She loves Jesus more than anything else, and it shows!  She is not only beautiful on the outside, she is beautiful on the inside as well!  She has a heart for God that I only wish I would have had at her age!  She loves the elderly and kids, of course (that's kind of a
 pre-requisite to becoming a teacher) Haha!  She has the voice of an angel.  This girl can SING, y'all!  I remember the first time that I heard her sing at church.  It literally brought me to tears. The Lord has given her a talent that allows her to lead people to worship Him.  Beautiful...just beautiful.

I could go on and on about what an amazing girl that Jordon is, but I would be here all night!  The bottom line is this:  whoever God has chosen for Jordon (whether it be someone that finds her through Kelly's Korner or somewhere else), he is gonna be one happy fella!!  I can't wait to see where the Lord takes this girl!

If you are interested in getting to know Jordon or know someone who might be just leave me a comment here or you can email me at jasonhbranch@yahoo.com.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

SUMMER!!!!!

 Alright, alright.....let's just get this out in the open.  I am fully aware that I have not updated this blog since August of last year.  My life turned out to be a crazy, chaotic storm just after school started in the fall and I really had no time to blog.  However, I am fully regretting not blogging now because blogging holds me accountable to journal about what's going on and to take pictures.  I have been absolutely horrible at taking pictures over the last nine months.  So...I am going to TRY to do better.  We shall see.  There are so many things that have happened since August, but for the sake of time, I am just gonna pick up where we are right now in our lives!  Otherwise, I would be here for DAYS going through everything:)

So, summer is officially here!  Rylee's last day of school was last Wednesday and summer has gotten off to a great start so far.  Jason was off of work on Friday and Monday due to Memorial Day and we hung out at home most of the weekend.  Rylee turned EIGHT on Friday(more on that later) and she had her first of many summer swim meets on Saturday!  I took zero pictures (remember...I am out of picture taking practice!)  Anyway--that's pretty much the only thing we did this weekend!!  I got a little jealous of the pictures I was seeing on Facebook of everybody at the lake and the beach, but I finally decided that those folks would be SUPER jealous of me if they knew that I was at home digging into a mound of laundry, so that helped a little;)

On Sunday Stacey came to visit since she was in from Florida.  Stacey and I became friends when I was in the 8th Grade and she was in the 9th, and we've been like sisters ever since.   I love her visits and now I love them even more since she brings a little extra someone with her these days!!!  Her baby, Estella, is THE MOST ADORABLE BABY!!!!  I could just eat her up! 
Stella looks scared to death (as she should be) in this picture. 

This is the best I could get, but this is real life, people! 
I love how Brock is posing.  So serious.  And, Stella still looks scared to death.  Again...as she should be.  I'm sure she is used to a calm environment.  We don't really have one of those here;)

Today has just been a lazy day.  Rylee had swim practice this morning and after a quick trip to the store, we headed home for a quiet day.  After the kids rested for a while, we played Sorry and then Brock decided that he wanted to play Lollipop Land (CandyLand) with Rylee.  I'm not sure who won, but since Rylee was the rulemaker, I would bet that she made sure it was her.  She gets it honest.  Just ask my sister.  She loves playing games with me.  Right, Leah?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Second Grade!

Yesterday was Rylee's first day of 2nd grade!  When I picked her up, she had a huge smile on her face and told me what a great day she had!  She said she really liked her teacher, so that made me happy!  I can't believe that my baby girl is growing up so fast!  Time sure does fly!!!  It seems like just yesterday that I was dropping her off at her first day of PreK!  I went back and found her first day pictures from Kindergarten and 1st grade.  Apprantly, we had not entered the digital age when she was in PreK, and I don't have a scanner at the moment, so the last two years will have to do!  I look at the pictures and can't believe how much she has grown, especially since the Kindergarten picture!
 
 Kindergarten
 Mrs. Julie
 1st Grade
Mrs. King
2nd Grade
Ms. Cassie

We have been blessed with WONDERFUL teachers since PreK, and I am thankful that we live in a town with great school districts!  I have no doubt that we will have another great year!  I whisper a prayer each morning as she steps out of the car that she is protected (emotionally, physically, and spiritually) and that she is an example to her peers.  It's a very short prayer, but the Lord hears me!  I never know what awaits her as she walks through the front door of the school, but HE does!  Knowing that makes it MUCH easier to drop her off every day!  I leave the campus every morning trusting that the Lord WILL protect her!

   She and I talk almost everyday on the way to school about how she should treat her peers.  I explain to her that we have no idea what some of her peers have been through the night/morning before school, and that a simple smile, a "hello", or an invitation to play can make them feel much better!  I am so thankful that she seems to be developing a  compassionate heart , and I can only pray that quality will remain in her as she grows! 
Rylee, I hope you have a FANTASTIC year!!!
I LOVE YOU, sweet girl!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

P.A.L.S.

When I started this post, I intended for it to be about Brock's first day at P.A.L.S., a local preschool in our area.  However, as I started thinking about the day, I realized it was a day full of spending time with pals! It took my pictures forever to load!  It's past my bedtime, and Rylee's first day is tomorrow, so this is a post full of more pictures than talk!  Speaking of pictures---I have no idea why they look the way they do tonight, but I don't feel like messing with them so I'm just gonna go with it!  So, here goes:

Brock loved PALS today, and the teacher said that he did very well!  This pleased me after our six week stint at Mother's Day Out last year!  He cried every time he went, and we were both miserable!  Luckily, Ashley kept him for me one day a week for the rest of the semester and dad kept him the other day!  He was much happier there playing with his "best buddy Jamison."  Anyway-I have a good feeling that PALS will be a wonderful thing for him a couple days a week while I am in class!  He's getting to be such a big boy, and I LOVED hearing all about his day when I picked him up this afternoon!
 After Rylee(my pal for the day) and I dropped Brock off this morning, we headed off to get her a mani/pedi!  She loved every second of being pampered before she heads back to school tomorrow!  Sidenote--Where did the summer go?  I'm pretty sure it was the SHORTEST SUMMER EVER!  I am ready for a routine, though!
 Rylee took gymnastics for a few years, and Mrs. Amanda was her teacher!  She does nails now at the salon that we use to get our hair done, so Rylee is very comfortable with her!
 After her pampering, she got a new feather and some tinsel in her hair!  She got one at the beginning of the summer that was green.  When we took it out a couple of weeks ago, it was WHITE from all the chlorine!!  We did a lot of swimming this summer!
 This picture is messed up, but I left it on here anyway!  You can see in the background that we are at a shoe store.  Of course, what you don't see is Rylee modeling shoes.  I can't take that kid anywhere without her heading toward the shoe department!!!  And, it's always the high heel section!  We had fun trying all the different shoes on, though!

Meanwhile, my dad started his new Tuesday/Thursday gig today as my babysitter (or manny as I like to call him).  He has been nice enough to offer to keep Jett on the days I am in class!  I'm not sure what I would do without all of his help!!!  He has made it pretty easy for me to return to school with three small children!  I don't start class until next Tuesday, but we thought we would give it a trial run before we actually start our routine next week!  Plus-I wanted to spend a little time with Rylee by ourselves today!  This was dad (D-Daddy) and Jett at the beginning of the day:
He posted this on Facebook about halfway through the day:
 And this one came about 5 (right before Jason got there to pick Jett up):
 Dad is just downright crazy sometimes:-)
They actually survived just fine!  Here they are at the end of the day:
 I'm sure they will be big buddies (or pals I should say, since that seems to be the theme of the day!)

And one last "pal' picture:
Jason's dad (Papa) and Brock are BIG pals!  Brock loves to follow Papa around and help him work! Jason dropped Brock off at Nana and Papa's house earlier this evening, so Brock could spend the night and have a "workday" with Papa tomorrow!

It was definitely a great day for "pals"!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Birthday Buddies!




I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook.  Most of the time, I hate it for reasons that I can’t quite put my finger on. I do love Facebook every once in a while, though!  It’s put me in touch with people all over the world that I would most likely not keep in contact with otherwise.  I am able to see pictures of family and friends who live in different cities, states, etc. and watch their kiddos grow up through pictures!  And, it’s a quick way to communicate with people if I need to.  Without Facebook, I would have probably never known that these two cuties were born on the exact day, just a couple hours apart:

That little adorable girl on the left is Ella!  She is Jett’s “Birthday Buddy” as her momma says!  When I was growing up we lived next door to Amy and Sarah for several years!  We had lots of fun back in the dayJ.  Sarah was a year ahead of me in school and Amy is about 5 years older.  After college, Amy moved to Los Angeles and Sarah moved out there 7 years ago.  Through Facebook, we connected and I am so thankful that we did!  Amy was due to have Ella in November and I was due to have Jett in mid-December, so we kind of kept in contact with one another throughout our pregnancies.  When Jett had to make an early appearance, I posted a picture of him on Facebook to let everybody know that he was here.  Sarah commented on the post that Amy was actually in labor right then and they were expecting little Ella to arrive in a couple of hours!  She did arrive shortly after that, and it has been so fun keeping up with all of her milestones and seeing her pictures and talking with Amy back and forth about the babies!  Amy and Sarah’s parents still live here, so they (along with Amy’s husband, Allister) came for a visit this week!  I was afraid I wasn’t gonna be able to make it over there to meet Ella, because our life has been so busy lately.  BUT, I found some time yesterday morning to get over there and meet that sweet girl!!!  She is the most adorable thing and has the CUTEST smile!!  She and Jett are almost exactly the same size and they LOVED each other!  Of course, Rylee is now mildly obsessed with Amy and Sarah!  She thinks it is the coolest thing ever that they live in Hollywood!!!  The first question she asked me when I told her that we were going to see my old neighbors who were in from California was, “Do you think they get to go to fashion shows??!?!”  She had several questions for them (which she was too shy to ask) and I bet she has asked thirty more since we left their house yesterday!  She is already planning a visit out there for a vacation one day!  It was a great visit and I am so glad that the “Birthday Buddies” were able to meet one another!  Maybe they can be pen pals(or Facebook friends) one of these days;)  So….sometimes Facebook isn’t so bad after all…as long as you stay off your spouse’s wall!  HA!
Oh, and by the way---these two turned EIGHT MONTHS OLD yesterday!!!!  I will post Jett's 8 month post later.  Come to think of it...I need to get his 7 month up!  I'm so behind!!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Fishing Frenzy!

We spent the weekend with my Uncle Eddie (my Dad's brother) and Aunt Sandra at their house!  They live about three and a half hours from us. We had such a great time!  On Saturday, Dad drove up and met Eddie, Jason, Brock, and Rylee at the river for a little fishing!  It was the kid's first fishing trip and they still haven't quit talking about it!  They caught a total of 8 fish!  Sandra, Kelsey (my cousin), Cody(Kelsey's fiance'), Jett, and I drove up to meet up with the fishing crew for lunch and the kids did a little swimming in the river before we headed back up to the house.  We didn't get to see Drew (my other cousin) much, because he was playing basketball in another town this weekend. He came home last night and messed with Jett quite a bit!  They became good buddies!  Jett found another buddy--Tucker (Kelsey's poodle).  It was the cutest thing watching him grabbing and playing with Tucker!  We went to church with them this morning, and came home to find that their other dog had her puppies while we were gone!!  She had at least 3 before we headed to come back home.  I haven't checked to see if any more were born after we left!  When we pulled up in their driveway on Friday, I commented to Jason about how pregnant she looked, but we had no idea we would get to see such tiny puppies before we left!  The kids thought that was really neat!!  They LOVE going to Uncle Eddie's house!  They have a lot of land and it allows the kids to do things that they don't really have room to do here in the city! Ha!  I took quite a few pictures and didn't want to leave any out, so I created a slide show of our weekend!!  Thank you guys for allowing us to stay with you this weekend!  As always....we had a BLAST and can't wait to visit again!

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Monday, June 20, 2011

No pictures----Just talk!

Rarely do I have a day that makes me want to find the nearest cliff and jump off.  Today, I had one of those days!  This morning, I took Rylee to a local church's VBS.  I came home and piddled for a while (yes, I just used the word "piddled") before heading back up to get her at noon.  For some reason, I felt the urge to drag all of my children to Hobby Lobby AND the grocery store.  I'm still questioning that decision.  I'm not one of those people that never goes anywhere because I don't want to wrestle with my kids, but I do try to limit trips with them to stores with breakable objects and food.  They have never broken anything, but they are very well known for randomly chunking food items into the basket without my knowledge.  So...I try to do my "breakable item" shopping and grocery shopping in my so-called spare time (whatever that is).  Maybe that explains why we never have groceries!  Ha!  Anyway, I happily headed to Hobby Lobby with hopes of having a decent afternoon.  I took the kids to Taco Bell, because I was trying to avoid any place with a Playland!!  I knew we would never make it to Hobby Lobby if there was a Playland in sight!  I don't know if my children got full or not, because when we started to walk out of the door, I turned to look at the table to make sure everything had been thrown away and all I saw were mounds of taco meat (or whatever they put in those tacos) under the table.

So destructive.....so very destructive.

Yay----it's off to Hobby Lobby we go!!!  I love that store!  Really---I do!  Rylee has a sleepover coming up, so I am in full force planning mode!  And I love Hobby Lobby when I am in planning mode!  However, after .2 seconds of stepping in the doors, I knew it was a mistake!  The baby immediately started fussing and Rylee and Brock were pretending that the entire store was an obstacle course!  I saw a few people I knew and a few people I didn't know who kindly commented on how adorable my children were.  That was very, very sweet, but at the moment that those kind people were cooing over my kids, I was envisioning knocking myself out with one of those tall, breakable vases or jumping into the fabric never to be seen again.  If you ever watched Lizzie McGuire a few years ago, you will remember that she had this little cartoon that sat up on her shoulders that acted out all of the things she envisioned doing, but would never actually do.

I have one of those.

She was in full force today.

I tried to keep pushing on.  The baby was still randomly fussing here and there, but nothing too bad.  I decided to fix him a bottle to prevent any crying.  He drank his entire bottle sitting straight up in the front of the cart. 

Very uncomfortable, I am sure.

But, I was on a mission.

Just as my children began knocking things off of shelves, I noticed this woman with four kids trailing nice and quietly behind her. I thought for a second that I may just replace mine with hers, but I figured someone would eventually notice.  So, I decided to keep mine.  I did, however, do the ever so horrible parenting approach and COMPARED those children to mine!!!!

"Look at those nice boys listening to their mommy and not causing any trouble."

"I know, Momma, but they just don't look like they are having ANY fun in here!  Me and Brock are having SO much fun!  What those boys are doing is REEEAAALLLLLYYYYY boring!"

That comment earned my precious Rylee a square to stand on.  She was instructed to stand in the square and not move until I did.  When I moved,I told both of them to get on either side of the cart and not let go. We got to the next little section of the store where Rylee turned the "stand on a square" discipline approach into a game that she and Brock could play. It quickly turned into a competition to see who could jump more squares at a time.  People were starting to stare and I was needing more deodorant, so I just decided to give up.  I quietly grabbed my children, pushed my cart to the service desk, and told the cashier that I was going to have to leave and I would appreciate it if she would put my things back up on the shelf for me and I would purchase them at a later time.

We left.

I wanted to come home SOOOOO bad, but I really needed to go to Kroger.  I told the kids we were going in there, and if their behavior was anything like Hobby Lobby, I would have to come up with some major punishment.  We pulled in the Kroger parking lot, and Brock started to have a screaming fit.

"What?, I asked.

"You said we were gonna go get some krogurt."

"Krogurt?"

"Yeah....you said we were gonna get some krogurt if we be good."

Hmmmmmm.........somebody got a little confused.

"First of all, Brock--I said we were going to KROGER, I said nothing about krogurt, or yogurt as I am sure that is what you must be referring to.  Second of all---at what point are you thinking that you have been good?"

"Ummmm...that point back there."

They didn't get any yogurt today.

We finished the Kroger trip, but not before my children decided to get BEHIND the checkout WITH the cashier and try to "help" her. 

She wasn't amused.

Neither was I.

I'm pretty sure I am still being talked about as "THAT MOM".

After Kroger, we ran over to my dad's house.  I told the kids to stay put in the car and I would be right back.  My dad went out to talk to them.  He came back in and informed me that Rylee said I had been mean all day.  I didn't really respond to that, but Lizzie appeared.

She thinks I need a vacation.