Monthly Archives: February 2016

deep roots….

so the older two Dunkins look a lot like dave.
and a lot like me.
they’re a pretty amazing blend of the two of us.
the way God designed genetics boggles my mind.

unfortunately for the older two Munchkins,
they take after ME in the dental department.
that means small mouths and big teeth.
a year ago,
on a regular trip to the dentist (our FIRST trip, mind you),
the dentist recommended that davey have SEVERAL teeth pulled no later than summer.
summer 2015.
as in – less than 3 months later.
really, really soon.
and then they recommended that Samantha would need the SAME THING
(aka: lots of teeth pulled) the following summer (2016).
and that didn’t sit well with me.

so it took several months,
but i finally remembered to get a 2nd opinion appointment
(from MY dentist, whom i really trust and respect).
and my dentist (who didn’t charge me for the consult!)
recommended the same thing as the pediatric dentist.
he also recommended an orthodontic consult.
so i finally got that last month.
and he recommended THE SAME THING.


so i gave in.
and i scheduled the Munchkins to get some teeth pulled.
by taking a year to get those two other opinions,
davey ended up losing a few of his teeth.
so instead of needing to have SIX teeth pulled….
he only needed ONE!
this morning, his smile looked like THIS:


but just a few hours later,
he looked like this in the dentist’s chair:


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along with getting just ONE tooth pulled,
he also got SEALANTS on all four of his molars.
hopefully he’ll end up with far fewer cavities than his mama!
(this sweet boy didn’t even realize his tooth had been pulled.
he knew the sealants were on.
and he was waiting.
and waiting.
and waiting for his tooth to be pulled.
but they’d already done it.
after the sealants.
silly boy!)

this girl,
didn’t get off so easily.
this morning, her smile looked like this:

and just a few hours later,
it looked like this:
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those are some LARGE gaps in there!
she had FOUR teeth pulled.
her four canines.
that means one tooth on the top left
one on the top right
one on the bottom left
one on the bottom right.
so combine those FOUR canines that were pulled with the 3 teeth she’s pulled out or lost on her own over the last few months and this girl is missing LOTS of teeth!

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both munchkins were in good spirits this morning.
and when they discovered the movie ALVIN & THE CHIPMUNKS on the tv at the dentist’s office?!
all was well at that point!

but then they each took turns going back to see the dentist.
davey’s visit wasn’t too bad.
samantha’s was a little harder (though she actually went first).
her first two teeth came out easy.
the third one put up a tiny fight.
and the fourth one didn’t want to let go.
she may have shed some tears at the end of her visit.
the staff in the office were so kind and gracious and understanding.
and i would like to say that once her dose of Motrin kicked in….
she was FINE for the rest of the day
(until bedtime when she needed another dose of medicine).

on our way home from the dentist’s office,
we stopped at McDonalds for MILKSHAKES
(chocolate for D and strawberry for S)…
to be eaten with a SPOON and NOT a straw!


along with their milkshakes,
they watched HORTON HEARS A WHO
and about an hour of netflix cartoons.

they found some other things to do later this afternoon:

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and they even joined us at the table for dinner!
samantha only ate the cheesy potatoes (wise choice!)
but davey was able to eat some salmon, too.
(note: samantha DID have a smoothie this afternoon – with a spoon, not a straw – and it included LOTS of spinach).


these two tackled this day with grace and understanding.
they were brave and gracious.
they were polite and kind.
i love them with ever fiber of my being.

and i really, REALLY wish they had dave’s mouth instead of mine.

everything is awesome in Candyland….

by now, i think you know i’m a “parent rep” on our school’s PTSO board.
that means i’m part of the decision making and planning and prepping of our PTSO activities, events, and fund raisers.

last year, we hosted a CANDYLAND themed Valentine’s Dance/Party
(there was a little drama from the upper grades when we called it a DANCE instead of a PARTY, so we re-named it and pushed hard that it’s a FAMILY EVENT).
we had candy, candy, candy, candy, and more candy.
plus cupcakes, soda, and water.
i agreed to create a photo backdrop AND to take photos for $5 each.

many thanks to pinterest,
i went with a “candy dots” themed backdrop:

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kinda fun, eh?
i agreed to take photos again this year.
but i wanted to change up the backdrop.
and simplify it.
but after searching on Pinterest,
i didn’t come up with many great ideas.
one idea i DID find there was PERFECT for this year….

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colored streamers.
with blue butcher paper behind it.
yep. that’s all i did.
well, i made it a little harder….
but in the end, it made it easier for me to put it up and take it down.
i stapled 7′ lengths of streamers to square dowel rods.
since we were working with a CEMENT BLOCK wall at school,
i used a hot glue gun to attach the butcher paper to the wall.
and then i hot glued the square dowels to the butcher paper.
and i used glue at the BOTTOM of the streamers to attach them to the butcher paper so they wouldn’t fly about and get tangled during the evening.
i also snagged some huge frames from my home and painted them
(using trusty-old spray paint) to add another “dimension” to the photos.

i love that there was no “seam” visible in the middle of the backdrop this year.
i did learn, however, that i need to make my backdrop taller (we have some TALL DADS)…
and wider (there were some photos with 9 people in them!).
if we stick with the CANDYLAND theme again next year,
i’ll have to come up with another fun backdrop….

now i know the above photos of my kiddos and i aren’t the greatest.
we were missing a KEY piece to our lighting kit.
and that piece was at a friend’s house.
and she wasn’t going to be home until AFTER the party started.
so she ran it to me as soon as she could.
and after about 7 or 8 photos,
i had MUCH better lighting, b/c we got the slave flashes to work.

but before the doors opened,
we got a photo of SOME of our trust PTSO board hard at work….
well, maybe we’re not hard at work in this photo.
we’re smiling nicely.
and standing up tall.
but we were in the middle of scurrying around to get everything READY.


many, MANY thanks to Bobbi Jo (our president),
for snapping a few photos of me “at work” in the photography booth that evening:


(since this year’s photos weren’t “fixed” – meaning i didn’t have the camera attached to a tripod to keep them all “portrait” style (like a prom photo),
i was up and down all night long.
i was on my knees.
i was squatting.
i was walking.
for TWO hours.
i spent the next few DAYS trying to recover.
my left thigh, especially, was SORE.
and stronger.
much, MUCH stronger.

here are a few of my favorite people who bought pictures that night:

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(that last photo is of Bobbi Jo, our President, and her son.
it was the LAST photo i took of the evening.
it was literally SECONDS before i ripped down the backdrop and rendered it useless.
so glad for that ONE. LAST. PHOTO!)

now since i was at the photo booth ALL. NIGHT. LONG…..
(seriously, my line was CAH-RAZY looooooooooong)…..
I have ZERO photos of the event itself.
many thanks to SUSAN for showing up to take photos for the yearbook!

i was, however, able to snag some photos from some friends….

this photo is like a “where’s waldo?” search….
can you find SAMANTHA:


apparently it’s a dance circle and there was a 4th grader inside doing AH-MAZE-ING things.
there’s a video of it on Facebook.
but not on my page.
i don’t know the kid.
that might be kinda weird.
but the dance was cool.

i think our PTSO pulled off another VERY successful event!
and bonus for me:
it’s first thing Wednesday morning right now and i’ve already
all the photos I took.
for reals.

(please be advised that “delivered” means i put the photos in the teacher’s boxes in the workroom at school. they are responsible to deliver them to the students. and the students are responsible to deliver them to the parents.)

while i really do ENJOY taking the photos,
i do wish i could enjoy a few moments with my kiddos on the dance floor.
then again,
samantha was the only one who stayed at the party this year.
davey, alex and daddy went home to eat dinner and watch
The Lego Movie.

the angry crab shack

a few years ago, i heard about this place called “The Angry Crab Shack.”

it sounded intriguing,
but with Dave’s gluten intolerance,
it’s not always easy to try new places.
to be fair,
their menu DOES note that the sauces are all gluten free.
but i was never sure if it would be worth it for him.
and i really didn’t know if my kids would enjoy it.
i mean, i’m SURE they would LOVE that your food gets dumped out on your table.
and i’m sure they would LOVE making a giant mess at dinner -
especially because they wouldn’t get in trouble for it!
but they’re not crazy about seafood.
we eat fish tacos and we eat salmon but that’s about it.
samantha had fresh from the bay crab in WA one summer and LOVED it.
but that was awhile ago.
and it was crab that had been pulled out of the bay only hours earlier.

so last week, when Audra was in town and we planned to have lunch together,
it took me a few days to think of another restaurant for us to try
(she has multiple allergies and foods she avoids, too),
we agreed on The Angry Crab Shack.

now you should know that lunch (or any meal) with Audra is always an adventure.
she likes to order different things.
she likes to try the specialty of the house.
she pushes me out of my comfort zone.

so for an appetizer,
it was recommended that we try the breaded alligator or the breaded frogs legs.
since Audra is supposed to avoid gluten/wheat,
we went with the recommendation that had LESS breading:


frogs legs.
for real:

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so it wasn’t gross.
(the breading was actually REALLY good – and i’m NOT a breading lover).
it was extra chewy.
it didn’t taste like much.
(no, it didn’t taste like chicken).
i have no need to order them again.
but they weren’t bad.
but now, as i think back on frogs
and all the dirty, slimy, swampy, muddy places they live,
i’m a bit grossed out.
so i stop thinking about it.
that’s my best defense.

now, Audra is allergic to crab.
so she asked our server for a recommendation for her meal.
he suggested the grilled salmon basket.
i ordered a Dungeness Crab.
i didn’t pay complete attention when i ordered,
so i neglected to realize i was ordering a WHOLE crab instead of just crab legs.


that, my friends, is 1.75 lb of tasty Dungeness crab.

Audra was disappointed to later discover that there was LOBSTER on the menu.
(try to imagine a photo of Audra holding a LOBSTER like i’m holding that photo of a crab!)
and THEN we learned that our server doesn’t even like seafood.


so Audra wants to try this place again.
and she’ll order the lobster.
and i’ll order crab LEGS.
and we’ll maybe take the guys with us.
and i don’t know WHAT Dave will order.
or Bob.
it could be very, VERY fun!

so Audra,
THANK YOU for our lunch date!
i had a great time.
i ate great food.
the conversation didn’t falter at all.
i wish you lived here all the time.
come back soon!