Friday, March 28, 2014

Spring Break Photo Dump

I realize Spring Break was a week ago, but when you're in the trenches with 2 two year olds you write when you can...even if it's a week late...even if no one cares.  You pretend they care.  Then you dump a bunch of photos on them with super lengthy captions because you just need a little outlet from those crazy two year olds who have been fighting  ALL. DAY.  LONG.  

I've said too much.

Let the photo dump begin...

Sooooo, here are some of the loves of my life riding the cutest little boat that makes me want to puke just watching it go back and forth and back and forth, but everyone in the boat seems happy.  This pic totally sums up our weekend.  So much fun and great memories made.

 We woke up early Saturday morning and drove a few hours to hit up Silver Dollar City.  The kids were so excited to get out of the car and ride rides...and pee.  So being the super modest parents we are, we parked by the edge of the woods and let them pee over the railing.  I'll spare you the pic of that.

Once inside the park, the kids were so pumped.  Chubby Cheekers on the other hand was spending time pondering the deeper things in life.   Where was the nearest Snackie Station?  And that little thang out she not the cutest little party animal you've ever seen?

Little Miss' first ride was the Big Swings.  She has always loved heights so I was pumped to ride with her.  She squealed and laughed the entire time.  That's my girl.


And here is the whole gang as we were waiting for our bus to take us back to the cars.  We had such a blast!  Definitely a tradition in the making.

Now this is what a successful day of riding rides looks like...


Once we returned home it was back to having all 5 kids.  If you know anything about Torres kids, you know you have to keep them busy.  So everyday I planned an adventure to somewhere.  An adventure that was free cause I'm cheap like that!  

I would like to see if you could possibly spot the child that was the most difficult on this day...

Yep, Chubby Cheekers wasn't digging the tree stump climbing.  All he wanted to do was get in the sand box.  The one that had sand.  I don't like sand.  My car doesn't like sand.  

Are they not the most professional looking explorers ever????

Showing off their muscles after conquering the Strenuous Trail.  I mean, shouldn't I be showing you MY muscles after pulling those two chunks of hunks in the wagon???
Again, can you spot the difficult child???
I think the thing about Spring Break that I love is the days of 'Get To's'.  There is not anywhere we have to be.  We get to do what we want.  We woke up together.  Had breakfast when we wanted.  Cuddled watching cartoons together.  Went on adventures when we wanted to.  I love the freedom, and thankful for these 5 crazy kids I get to spend my day with.  Some days they make me want to pull my hair out one my one with tweezers, but mostly I am thankful for the opportunity to have a closeness with each one of them.  Even that spirited little blonde boy.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Menu Monday

I fully intended to post our shenanigans from Spring Break last week, but one shenanigan after another led me to leaving the computer alone.  Not to mention I'm rocking a 2006 Dell laptop that is still kicking.  Firing this bad boy up takes a least 10 minutes.  It's probably time for a new computer, but I am waiting for this thing to DIE!

So our week last week kicked off with Little Miss' first ever slumber party with my best childhood pal's girls.  It was so much fun to help out with the Spa Night.  I will totally steal this idea for a party in the future!
Just look at these cutie pies...

The next morning we woke the boys early to grab donuts, get Little Miss and head out of town for Branson, MO with friends.  We were quite the lucky ducks to get great weather on Saturday and then watch a beautiful snowfall on Sunday.  Lovely!


We even ran into Little Man's friend from school and church.  He was so pumped to ride a ride with him.

I'll spare you the rest of our photo dump until later this week.  We had such a great time together during Spring Break it makes it that much more difficult to let them loose at school again.

Here's my menu for the week!

Monday-Honey Mustard Chicken, Grilled Veggies and Brown Rice
Tuesday- Crispy Southwest Wraps, Guacamole and Brown Rice Chips
Wednesday-Veggie Spaghetti and Salad
Thursday-Creamy Enchiladas, Mexi rice, Corn
Friday-Fend for Yourself Night...Mama's gone to a retreat!
Saturday-Sandwiches, Fresh Veggies, Fruit Bowl
Sunday-Dinner @ Mama's

Hope you have a great week!  Better yet, make someone else's week great!


Sunday, March 23, 2014


For most of you this probably will seem like a gigantic whine session.  Let me be real.  It is a whine session.  Negative Nancy at her best.

Since November I have been struggling with severe knee pain while running.  It'll begin at mile 2 or before.  I can feel my IT band tightening and BAM!  Suddenly there is stabbing pain on the outside of my knee.  It is frustrating. 

Most of you know how competitive I am with myself.  I don't mind if others beat me, but only if I have given it my all.  With this inconvenient knee pain, I've had to really take a step back in challenging myself.  It is frustrating.

My girl time involves of running.  There is nothing like an early morning run for an hour or two followed by a big 'ol breakfast with a bestie.  Not being able to run far enough to constitute a big 'ol breakfast...It is frustrating.

So there's a few of  my whines and belly aches about my knee.  It all really hit the fan on Saturday.  The biggest belly aching of all is about to come out.  The nasties of my attitude is about to show.  I hope you're ready for me to unleash the beast.

I took off a whole week of running over Spring Break.  This past weekend, we were scheduled to do 8 miles.  At mile 3 I had to stop.  Limiting my partner as well.  Began running again at mile 4, then finally stopped for good at mile 5.  I felt so defeated and was trying to keep the tears in.  My mind went nowhere else other than negativity and defeat.

How are you going to complete 13.1 if you can't get passed 3?
You can't do this?
You will never beat your PR time.
You should quit.
You should find someone else to run in your place.

It hurt.  I came home from that run and cried.  Cried like a baby.  Over a knee.  It seriously happened.

At times like this I am thankful for my wonderful husband who comforts and listens.  He didn't offer any advice.  Just comforted and listened and got me some ice. 

That night we had church.  I love our church, but sitting there waiting for service to start my knee was killing me from being in one position.  Standing up for praise and worship was not fun.  Going through the songs and focusing on what is truly important, my mind cleared and I was able to have true wisdom poured into me.

My circumstances do not define who I am or how my health is at the moment.

I will run this race even if I have to walk half of it.

I will get over the fear of going through a long race without my trusty side kick.  I will go at it alone.

During the race I will spend my time focusing on strength from God.

I will have to learn how to get music on my phone. (I never run with headphones...Erica and I talk the entire time)

I will get over the original time I had set in my head and do the best with what I have been given.

I will not be defeated.

I don't know what you are going through.  It could be something as basic and babyish as what I'm dealing with or it could be BIG.  Although my race in April is not life altering, it is a moment that will alter my thinking.  I refuse to let the negativity run me. 

If you have not read the book Greater by Steven Furtick, I suggest you get on Amazon and buy it now.  Not allowing negativity to run rampant is leading to my greater life.  And, I want to leave you with this...

I pray that you will not be satisfied with living on the fumes of what God did in your life yesterday but that every day will be a new chance to encounter God in a fresh new wayI pray you will realize that your relationship with God is only as strong as your most recent encounter with Him.  I pray that you won't be content with hearing about how others have walked with God powerfully but that you will walk powerfully with Him yourself.

Steven Furtick, Greater 

So whether I run the whole thing or walk a bit I plan on spending that time to encounter God in a fresh new way.  Activating a strength that can only come from Him.

On a lesser note, I will now accept applications on how to get music on my phone.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

I Neeeeeeed You to Know This

I've got a good story for you...

The other day I had a friend tell me, "You just have it all together."  Then I laughed in her face.  The end.

Good story, right?  No, seriously.  This happened.

Even though the compliment was so appreciated, all of my 'not-so-together' pieces started flowing through my mind.  I have a list, and I neeeeed you to see it.
  • My keys grow legs and walk away from me.  All. The. Time.
  • Today I cleaned my bathroom.  It hadn't been cleaned since beginning of February.  I mean the slime had slime.  Ewwwww!
  • I once child at our school's morning assembly.  Three other parents went searching for Chubby Cheekers as I frantically searched as well.  As I was chatting it up, he walked over to say good-bye to our neighbor friend.
  • I have an on-going collection of socks on the ottoman at the foot of my bed.  To take the time to match all those things up kills me. 
  • My couch has enough 'snackies' in the cushions to feed a small country.
  • Most of the time the clean laundry goes from the dryer to my bed to the ottoman, then eventually gets folded a few days later.  It's a vicious cycle.
  • If you randomly stop by one, or three, of my kids will be halfway dressed and their hair everywhere.  
  • I will be in workout clothes...whether I've worked out or not.  I like to keep you on your toes.  Does she stink...does she not stink?
I could go on and on and on. 

What I love about this whole scenario is my friend perceived that I had it all together.  I perceive that I am a hot mess 99.9% of the time.  So much so that I declare I need this shirt in 7 different colors.  I neeeeeed others to know of my hot mess days.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

We Got This Parenting Thing Down, Right?


When I look at this picture I totally feel like I have conquered the world.  Do you know how many times we have attempted to get the 3 kids looking and smiling at the camera at the exact same moment?  Like a gazillion.  The pic above is the first time ever.  I love everything about it except Steven isn't in it.  And my hair.  I need to totally change my hair. Check that.  I don't need to change my hair.  I need to actually fix my hair. 

I digress.

Looking at this picture makes me feel like I have conquered this parenting thing.  Then you go to McAlister's and you are quickly reminded that there is work to be done.  Lots of work to be done.

At first we're standing in line and Little Man and Little Miss are patiently waiting for our turn to order, and Chubby Cheekers is entertaining the elderly couple behind us by introducing our entire family.  

Dis is Mommy.  Dis is Dad-dee.  Dis is Bubby, Dis is Sissy.

I really thought Granny was going to pay for his dinner.  She was so putty in his hand. 

So there we are feeling so good about our parenting skills.  Strutting through finding our seats with the, 'Oh yeah, look at us.  We got this.' attitude.  We sit down and the kids are running through their day with Steven.  I'm intently listening because that's what good parents do.  Another badge on my Good Parenting Vest.  

That's when I realized that Chubby Cheekers was turned around in the booth...facing the newest patrons of McAlister's.  Not just turned around, but halfway hanging into their booth.

Then I hear it.

Hey!  You give me a Cheetos?

He's totally trying to bum a snack off the little girl, maybe 3 years old, snacking while waiting for her dinner.  She ignores him.  Not one to be ignored, Chubby Cheekers turns to the Dad.

Heeeey!  She no give me a Cheetos.  I need a Cheetos.

Cue embarrassment.   At this point he is trying to climb over to get into the snack cup.  Little Man and Little Miss just sitting there shaking their heads.  I mean we couldn't have fallen too far off the course if those two realized it was crazy to ask strangers for snacks, right???

So maybe it's the third child...

Or maybe we aren't that great of parents.  We just thought we were, but lucked out with the first two...

Or maybe we're just going to have to reign this last one in a bit more.

Or maybe we should just travel with Cheetos.

Yeah, that's it.  Travel with Cheetos.

Problem solved.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Chubby Cheekers Turns 2


 This little guy has rocked our world.  The little guy we never knew we needed.  He's spunky and fun and feisty and driven and passionate and goofy and brilliant. He's our icing on the cake...triple layer of icing at that.  

 It's really amazing to think about you being so little.  Time flies by.  You've always been the one to do things early.  You never went through the 'hang on the blanket' stage.  You've always been moving and grooving.  Makes me wonder what amazing feats in life you will tackle.  You've already tackled so many.

Life without you would be less of everything.  Less enjoyable, less busy, less laughter, less cleaning up, less craziness, but I wouldn't change any part of it.  You were born to be an entertaining leader.  Someone who sticks to his guns, is passionate, with a flare of funny.  You're my kind of guy.

Chubby Cheekers, even though your mother is wishing you a Happy Birthday 3 weeks late, it is no indication of our love for you.  You are the spice to our life.  Without you we would laugh a little less and have a super clean house.  And guess what???  Clean houses are overrated, but laughter is not.  

We love you, Chubby Cheekers.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Menu Monday

If you are sitting at sunny and 75+ degrees, I want to be where you are right now!  I have always been a person to enjoy all seasons, but this year I am ready for Spring.  Winter has overstayed the welcome.  Snow, sleet, rain, thunder, lightening on March 2nd.  Geez.  Time to go.

I'm ready for back porch grilling in my shorts and flip flops while the kids run around like little banshees in swim suits and water spraying everywhere.  I'm ready to wake up and throw on a tank, shorts, and shoes and head out for a run.  None of this put on layer 1, 2, and 3 before heading out.  I'm ready for smaller laundry piles, sunscreen scented kids,  and quiet time out back when the sun comes up.  Totally ready for warm.

I am soooo getting off track.  Here's the menu...

Monday-Coconut Chicken, Asparagus, The Bread
Tuesday-Breakfast for dinner
Wednesday-Southwest Chopped Chicken Salad and Berries
Thursday-Tater Beef Bake and Salad
Friday-Pizza Night
Saturday-Sandwiches, Fresh Veggies and Fruit
Sunday-Dinner at Mom's