Monday, November 29, 2010 favorite!!!

I LOVE Thanksgiving!  I just love the fall weather and season as a whole, so Thanksgiving just has a special place in my heart!  We ventured to Illinois this year (we alternate years between our families), and we had quite an adventure!  We drove through St. Louis so that we could take a break about half-way through our trip and visit the AMAZING St. Louis zoo.  This has got to be the most beautiful zoo we've ever seen!  The exhibits were spectacular and the animals were up close and right up in your face!  We could have reached out and touched a giraffe at one point!  There were tons of animals in each area too.  We are used to the Tulsa zoo where you can spot A bear, one, if you are lucky and are there at just the right time...feeding time.  The exhibits were beautiful with giant waterfalls, huge rocks and awesome foliage!!!  The grounds there are vast with lots of land.  It seems like we walked a lot for the portion of the zoo we saw, but the views were spectacular...lakes, pretty leaves, cool old buildings, bridges and statues.  It reminded me of the Philbrook Museum and grounds, if you are familiar.  Jude and Rhett had a blast and were thankful to be able to stretch their legs and run around a bit.  Rhett would spot an animal and just point and jibber jabber cute!  We also all took a spin on the carousel where I may or may not have gotten in trouble for riding the wrong way:).  The best part about this zoo is that it's FREE!!! 100% free admission all the time.  The carousel and train are even free for the first few hours in the morning.  What a great deal!  It was a fantastic stopping point and experience for the whole family!

When we finally made it to IL we had a great time with family.  It was wonderful to see my grandparents, and I always love for them to be able to experience my boys!  Unfortunately I got ill our second night there and it was just a domino effect after, then Dallas, then Rhett and Jude in the car on the way back to Tulsa.  Throwing up and the whole deal!  My dad, sister and niece also caught the bug!  Sorry everyone!

Turkey Mountain...

We LOVE to hike Turkey mountain here in Tulsa.  We've made it a Martin tradition to hike it in the fall when the trees are pretty!  We tried to go on what I considered the peak of prettiness a few Fridays ago, but we were interrupted by pesky rain showers that ended up taking down a lot of the colorful leaves I was pining after pictures of!  So, we made the best of it and drove around and looked at all the color sure was gorgeous for Tulsa this year!  We hiked the next day and had a blast.  Jude is a such a fun age for hiking and climbing...such a boy!  Don't you just love a good tradition!

In other news...

Jude tied for the first time the other day...woohoo!

Rhett got is first haircut a few weeks ago and is looking pretty handsome with his big boy haircut!  Thank goodness the mullet is outta here!

Rhett is super lovey these days...he loves to snuggle and give lots of hugs unprompted.  He will just run up to us and hug as tight as he can.  When he was younger I would be holding him and he would swing his body around and look at my face and get the biggest smile.  He just wanted to look us in the eye and let us know he loves us!  He's my lovey boy!

Rhett has almost 4 teeth now, two on bottom and two on top!!!  The 4th (upper) is just poking through, so we should have a full tooth in a few weeks, folks!

Rhett weighed 20 lbs at his last dr. visit and was in the 10-11th % for his weight and the 87th for his height.  Tall and thin...that's how we make em!

                           first hair cut...big boy!

                      Time to get rid of the pumpkins and pull out the Christmas decorations!
                         Thankfully I also LOVE Christmas!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Bullet!

The magic bullet, that is!  Everyone is always asking me if I have a mommy must-have list.  A list that contains all of my most useful devices to aid with mommy-hood.  Well, I don't, but if I did this sucker would be at the top of my list (this and the nose frida).  Most people probably wouldn't put an infomercial/kitchen appliance on their list of must-haves for babies, but I use this bad-boy!  This baby will shred, blend, mix, puree, chop or liquify ANYTHING you put in it.  My sis-in-law bought this for us as a Christmas gift last year, and I started out using it to make smoothies with all of my fruit and veggie servings for the day.  This was the best way for me to get everything I felt necessary for nursing.  It's now converted into a baby-food making machine!  Everything from bananas to chicken and rice, this thing does it all.  I've started putting Rhett's meals in there and adding a handful of spinach leaves for all of the vitamin-packed nutrients.  He loves it, though we have yet to find a food this boy does not love!  This little machine has enabled me to make my own baby food, and it feels good to know that Rhett is eating fresh, healthy foods!  I still use the bullet for smoothies, and now I add the spinach leaves to my mix as well,  you can't even taste it!  I just feel great starting my day with every serving of fruit and veggies I need, not to mention 2 dairy servings!  You could even get fancy with flax seed oil and protein powder!  But no worries, it also makes fabulous other treats like salsa, pesto, marinara sauce and margaritas!  The list really goes on and on.

Here's my favorite smoothie recipe:

*1/2 banana
*3 strawberries
*10-15 blueberries
*7-8 pineapple chunks
*1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
*splash of milk
*4-5 fresh spinach leaves
*3-4 ice cubes

I must say, I do not believe there is an equal substitute for the bullet.  I know there are copycats out there, but I've read nothing but bad reviews.  The blades don't last long, they break easily, they leak, thy don't chop smoothly, they are hard to clean and overall are not great quality.  I think it's worth the extra buck to get the real deal.  They run around $70, but I know they have them at Kohl's, and you can always catch a good sale there!  Blenders and food processors are for the birds! They have WAY too many parts to clean for me to commit to using it multiple times a day.
 So there you have it, my mommy must-have!


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

baby einstein...

Rhett has added to his vocabulary the last couple of days....his silent vocab, that is.  He's been signing "more" for a while now, but now he's added "eat" and "all done" to his silent jargon.  It's one of the cutest things I've ever seen!  It was so cute when Jude did this as a baby too, but you forget how adorable it is to see a baby use their tiny little hands to make words!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

i heart dallas...

I just want to take a few minutes while Dallas is sleeping to record how blessed I am to have him!  I know it sounds corny, but I KNOW that God made this man just for me.  I threw my expectations for my husband out the window years ago because he had way surpassed what I ever dreamed I would have or deserve.  He is by far the most loving, giving, sensitive, caring, honorable man I have ever met!  He surprises me constantly with his positive attitude and his relentless faith and love for Jesus.  Every time I see him reaching out to help others I fall even more in love with him!  When someone is against him, he prays for them (I need to take lessons from him on this).  Just the other day he was telling me a story about his trip to Haiti (last march), and he got choked up remembering his time there.  I just remember looking at him and getting tears in my eyes wondering how I got so lucky to have this man as my husband.  

We are opposite of what I hear is happening to a lot of married couples.  It seems like couples start out with all the passion and newness and fall in love and get married, then the newness wears off and they grow apart.  With us, we started as friends.  We built our friendship first, moved onto a relationship and got married.  We got married really young and it was rough...really rough at times.  We've had to fight for our marriage at times and work hard at all of the details.  It hasn't always been roses and sunshine if you know what I mean! It's been more of a blood, sweat and tears deal, but I wouldn't change a minute of it!  This is who we are and how we've come to the place we are at.  Because we had to work so hard, we know we are worth fighting for and we love each other so much more for overcoming the struggles.  We are closer now than we have ever been.  God knew what we had to go through to truly appreciate each other and to grow together into this neat little unit that is our family....we are blessed, and I know God has big plans for our lives!

Another thing I love about Dallas is that he has worked for everything he has.  His work ethic is unmatched in my book.  Every car, job, house, college and any other major purchase has been earned with hard work, discipline, prayer and planning.   There have been no handouts in this joint (besides the blessings from Jesus along the way)!  I used to wish that we had some rich family member that would pay for things for us like some of the peers we had when we first got married.  I found it unfair that some people didn't have to work for what they had, save up for a down payment, pay their own bills...yet some did (namely us!).  Well, it turns out that I am SO thankful we have worked for everything we have!  We take so much more pride in every blessing we have because we know that it was a reward for hard work!  Dallas is so very thankful for all he has.  He's not at all materialistic and he knows it could all be gone tomorrow.  He's okay with that too:).

He's extremely giving.  I once asked him if we could give $ to a family that needed a little help one month and how much to give...his reply, "give it all, Sarah."  There's nothing sexier than this giving man!

Some men dream of being millionaires by a certain age, or retiring young and traveling the world or some other super appealing scenario, but my man dreams of being in God's will and having a heart after God's own heart.  He wants his heart to break for what breaks God's, he wants to be where God wants him and in His timing.  What more could I want...I want to be more like Dallas!

Dallas has always been so sensitive to my needs and my issues (maybe sometimes to keep the peace), and I don't know many men (or women for that matter) who would put up with all of my quirks.  It's probably not entirely fair to him, and he's given in to me much more than me to him over the years, but it seems to be a nice balance now, and I'm so thankful that he puts up with me and tolerates me beyond reason sometimes.  He's the best!

The BIGGEST reason he's the best....our kids!  He is such a wonderful and loving daddy.  From the minute he walks in the door from work until the boys go to sleep, he is playing, wrestling, helping feed kiddos, bathing and tucking our sweet boys into bed.  He wouldn't have it any other way.  There was a time when he would lay with Jude for 2 hours until he fell asleep...night after night.  Dallas is Jude's hero, and I love the way he looks up to him.  I also love the sweet little compassionate boy Jude is turning out to be because of his dad!  I'm sure it will be the same story with Rhett.

This is probably a lot of rambling to readers, but these are the things I hold dear to my heart.  Things I don't want to forget, and that I want to continually be thankful for!  I want my boys to grow up knowing how in love with their Dad I am, and all of his wonderful qualities.

Dallas James, I love you to the moon and back, up to the stars and down to the worms!  I'm so blessed to share my life with you.  Thank you for being who you are!

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Okay, so a few weeks ago we were amongst friends and one of them used the phrase, "Oh my g_d!" As soon as said friend was gone, Jude was running around saying this every chance he found appropriate  (Isn't it weird how they know what context to use these phrases in?).  Well, we just don't say this at our house, it is the 3rd commandment, after all (no worries, I don't have plank-eye, it's just a personal preference).  We have had to remind him several times over the past few weeks not to say this and have even experienced a handful of time-outs to help him refrain from this verbiage.  Well today he was dancing around the living room and just blurted out, "god!"  I asked him what he said and he very quickly fessed up. I just looked at him in a disappointed way and asked, "Jude, why are you still saying that?" He whipped right around and said, "So He will bless me."  Awe, shucks folks...he's a smarty!  Though I doubt he knows what this even means, I'm proud of him to come up with an answer he knew I would like.  What a quick thinker.  Oh, and it seems as though he's been listening in church!  Testing limits is a SUPER fun part of age 3 (wink wink).

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Mom, I love you, but I DO NOT love this has grossness on it! - Jude

Monday, November 1, 2010

Pumpkin Patch and Halloween!

 I had planned on coming up with something matching and super creative for the boys this year, but Jude was pretty set on being a firefighter, so I caved.  Rhett loved being a lion for the night!

Look at the bright side...

The other day the boys and I were on a walk and we came across a man with one arm mowing a lawn.  He actually mows several lawns in our neighborhood (I find this to be an interesting career choice for someone with only the one arm, but that's neither here nor there)-OOOO-I could turn this into a valuable life-lesson...a person can do anything they put their mind to!  Jude, of course, is very concerned that this man is missing an arm, or as he put it, "has a broke-off arm."  I was trying my darndest to explain what had happened to the missing limb...maybe he was in an accident, or he had a blood clot, or probably he was just born without an arm (or quite possibly he didn't listen to his mom and she broke his arm...too far?).  This went on with a countless amount of questions for some time.  He wanted to know why HE was not born with only one arm and why God would not give this man two arms?  I was mentally drained by the time we reached the cul de sac to turn around and go home.  FINALLY he looked up at me and said, "well, at least he has 2 feet!"  I was shocked with his glass half full attitude!  It's true, things could always be worse:)!

The Verbal Filter

I think it's been established that Jude's verbal and social filter isn't quite as polished as one would hope.  In fact, I'd argue that his filter is non-existant.  This story pretty much gives a painfully obvious glimpse into why we are cautious every time we go out in public.  Yesterday, we had been out running around after church and decided to grab something to eat.  Jude wanted McDonald's, but we thought it would be a better idea to go to Sam's and get one of their pizzas.  Rather than take it home and cook it ourselves, we dicided to have Sam's cook the pizza while we walked around and shopped.  After 5 or 10 minutes, we walked back to the food area to pick up our pizza.  Sarah went to the counter and I took the boys and sat down at a table.  In a moment of absent mindedness, I picked the table right by the checkout lanes.  The boys were both sitting in the cart waiting patiently (Sam's was taking forever) and I was distracted by feeding Rhett a smoothie.  Meanwhile, Jude was doing some "harmless" people watching.  Then, out of the blue I realize Jude was asking some woman a question.  "Why is your forehead bleeding?"  Kind of an odd question, but inquisitive...  She looked at him with a smile on her face because, apparently, she didn't hear or understand him.  Then, while still smiling, she said "what?"  Before I could realize what was happening, you guessed it, he posed the question in a way that might be a little clearer;  "your forehead is bleeding...why?"  This was the noooooo moment that leaves Sarah and I speechless.  It was at this point I realized he was talking to an Indian woman whose "blood" was actually a red dot adorned by many married Indian women.  NOOOOO.  Fortunately, the nice lady brushed aside the question and went on her way. 

Clearly the moratorium on talking to strangers hasn't worked.  I started to get onto him, but really, how good is a lecture when you are having to stop mid sentence to compose yourself?  I just stopped, took a deep breath and asked that he not talk to strangers anymore.  That should work.