Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Playtime with dad

Today Jon only had to work a half day and since he came home after nap time he got hired to help take down Christmas decorations. To be fair the boxes were all in the attic and I can't really maneuver very well on a plank ducking through beams and carrying boxes so we waited for him. After getting all the decorations packed up he and Molly headed upstairs to put the totes up. As I was cleaning up I hear them having a lot of fun upstairs so went up to see what was going on and this is what they had created.
The Palace of Power.
This was Jon's first name for their fort, I guess I laughed a little too much because then it became - Molly's Mansion of Mayhem. Also some laughter on my part followed by Jon letting me know if Molly were a comic book character her name would be Destructo and this would be
Destructo and her get away car
Don't let the cute smile fool you she is capable of destroying a perfectly clean room in a matter of minutes. She can also knock down the walls to this palace in a second.
Since they had a den we decided to have a fight with some of the toys laying around. My protection was the cozy coup while Molly and Jon attacked from the fort. We did good for a long time then I managed to hit her hand with a hard block which brought about crying. But this did bring about my favorite statement of all times to date - Momma bad (with tears) while I was trying to apologize for hurting her. Granted my apology came with a few giggles because she was so funny about the whole thing.
Just a fun shot from our morning time. Molly and played in the snow and when we came in she took off her socks and pants and would have probably taken off her shirt except it was a onesie. Don't worry though she kept on her hat to keep her warm (for 2 hours)!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Snow/Sledding NC style

While driving home from Christmas we heard reports of 6 inches of snow at our house and were super excited. Last night we got home and yes there was snow and I guess it might have even been 6 inches but it really seemed like nothing after the last two years. Not knowing if it would even make it until morning Molly and I dashed out of the car and grabbed the sled. We did a few rounds down the front of the house and even got Jon to join us after he finished unloading the car. Then I did what any person who loves a good sled day does - I researched best sledding hills in Fayetteville. Google is not as smart as I once thought though because after I had a few places listed and was super excited for the morning when could hit the slopes I realized it was giving me sledding hills in Fayetteville ARKANSAS. Seriously the search engine should know I wanted ones where I live not in another state so after a refined search I found the only hill in the whole area. After being spoiled by the hills in Alaska only finding one in the entire area was a little sad but we still bundled up today and hit the road to go to Rowan park and went sledding with about 30 others. Molly loved it, especially since she didn't have to walk up the hill and only cried when we made her leave after 1 1/2 hours of sledding. I am thankful for at least the one hill because it was a lot of fun for our family - we were some of the only ones with real sleds and snow gear. We did lend out a sled to one family who brought the top of their turtle sandbox for the boys to sled down - we were offered "top dollar" if we would sell but I couldn't part with it so they settled for borrowing it for awhile.

Molly happy to be home with her moose after a nice sled ride!
Sledding in our front yard!! When I saw we dashed out of the car I really meant it the only thing we had on besides our regular clothes was hats!
Rowan Park the best sledding place in Fayetteville, NC.
Bundled up and ready to go!!!!
Molly and I after I drug her up the hill. One good thing about a small hill - I could climb it a lot more. I don't know if I could have hiked to the top of Dyea more than once. Riley is making it very difficult to breath these days so she and I sat at the top of the hill a few times while Molly and Jon went down.

Hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season and if you got some snow you played in it!!!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas at the mountain

Christmas this year we hit the road and drove to the McPherson Mountain Retreat to hang out with the whole clan. Everyone was there even Aunt Jenn who didn't have to rush back to work in retail this year along with her newest cousin Phoenix who turned one month while we were together. 7 adults, 2 kids and 1 dog made for some fun times during the week. We ate a lot, played a ton of Wii and board games (where I was undefeated in our newest game!) and cards. Our fun adventures including a candlelight service at a church we found online, playing in the snow with Lucky the dog, and making sure Molly didn't terrorize Phoenix too much. Molly made out in presents this year big time - so much Jon decided we should hold the present we got her until later. She got an easel, laptop, Noah's ark and shopping cart and of course tons of cute clothes! Hard to believe this time last year a skype conversation is all we had with Jon - this year we have been around him nonstop for 6 days and he doesn't go back to work for 2 more days. Molly loves having her dad around to spoil her and give her lots of extra cookies and play time outside.
Peek-a-boo - Molly woke up very happy to say hi everyone!
I love my cousin - I will love on him so much (more if people would stop supervising me)

Wii time while the girls took a break on the couch with all the grandkids (and grand dog)
Chasing Lucky the dog with dad and aunt Jenn.
Molly loves the snow - not quite like Alaska but enough to play in and have fun.

Molly and Phoenix getting some Grandmommy time on Christmas
Playing with her new toy
Molly supervising dad and Grandaddy - notice the easel in the background. Molly has had some fun coloring on it already. Dad was supposed to make sure she didn't get the markers but we came in to find them playing wii and Molly walking around with 2 markers in her hand. We had some fun times but Molly is a little sleep deprived.
Hope you all had a Merry Christmas!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Fort Bragg Champs and Nutcracker

This weekend the camera was hidden but praise the Lord for phones with cameras!
Thursday Jon found out about a Fort Bragg family scavenger hunt and we decided it would be something fun to do Saturday so he signed us up. I got home Friday night at midnight from a ladies night with the wives in Jon's unit to find he and Molly crashed on the recliner - having only gotten home 2 hours earlier from a rehearsal for a wedding he had. This was not a great start knowing we had to get up early to drive to the lake but when our alarms went off we hurried up and ate our breakfast to the sound of rain hitting the roof. Since it was almost freezing we threw on our long john's, smart wool's and other layers to go on our hunt. I did however forget gloves for Molly since there was no snow it didn't dawn on me we would need them. We got to Smith Lake signed in and were off. The uber competitive person in me was going through things as fast as a I could and basically telling Jon to run here and get this or do this while Molly and I stood under shelter not to get wet. That went on for about 20 minutes before he told me I was taking all the fun out of the event - so I set aside winning for the sake of family fun (harder done than said). For the next 2.5 hours we walked around finding clues to where Rudolph was hiding, went and visited the gingerbread man, went and saw ponies and miniature horses (there is a difference and Molly didn't want to ride just touch them) and basically completed the scavenger hunt knowing we were not in the running for a prize but we at least had some fun and learned a few things about events going on post. Jon turned in our sheet while Molly and I stood around the bonfire roasting marshmallows and came back saying at least 20 others teams had beat us b/c they had already turned in their forms. We enjoyed the bonfire a little longer and then headed home to warm up before Jon left for a wedding he was doing. 30 minutes before the wedding I got a call from Jon saying WE WON!! That's right it was about points not time and we got the most points so the McP's are the Fort Bragg champs right now and will be getting our picture for MWR later today. Molly might not have enjoyed the entire 3 hours out in the cold with exposed hands but once we collect the prize I think she will realize it was worth it (I hope)!!

We found Rudolph 2 hours and 45 minutes after starting (they said it should take 90 minutes)
We also enjoyed our first family ballet and possibly the first time for any of us to go to one. Jon's question when things started - will they talk? His later observation - they are all mute! Molly enjoyed the music and a balcony row to ourselves where she could dance around and also make some observations during the performance. One great thing is that Molly really did understand the emotion the music was trying to evoke because at a climax part she was yelling/screaming/laughing so loud and clapping. Unfortunately during a quiet moment she also felt those emotions and was "that kid" but since all kids were free there were a lot at the performance so we didn't feel as bad.
Waiting for the performance to begin.

Molly loved it!
We did hear a little girl near us state during the first act that those were real kids down there performing because it was not on TV. But she also decided in the middle of the second act she was done watching the performance b/c the TV version was much shorter and she was tired of watching it and would rather watch it on TV. So she and her parents left which was kind of sad but maybe one day she will appreciate things like this.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Molly's BIG weekend

This weekend Granny and BertBurt came and delivered Molly's big girl bed. This is the bed I got when we lived in Nebraska - so it has been around since before I was in 3rd grade. I always loved my trundle bed and the fact that I had to jump to get up on it - should be interesting with a 2 year old though. While they were here we played games, went to restaurants with TV's so Jon and my dad could watch a little football, de-liced Molly and the house and got the battery in my parents car replaced.
Molly on the bed - I think she will start out on the bottom but Jon and I are still discussing that. My mom hopes that nesting hits soon b/c the room needs a little work to be ready for Molly once her sister takes over the crib.
Molly on the move
You can't catch me and my Head/Balthrop Belly. She may weigh next to nothing but she still manages to have the big gut that sticks out.
Granny let me help you vacuum those stairs - I think you missed a spot.
See mom this is how it works - do Granny and I have to show you everything?
While BertBurt was tasked to clean the fans Molly thought she would hold the ladder down for him. She also had some advice for him on how to clean.
On our way to Chapel. Another great thing about parents coming is that we were able to use them as babysitters for an Army event we had to go to Saturday night so Molly could be at home with people she knew and loved.
Taking a Saturday afternoon nap after the mall and a bad morning of lice removal.
Two monkeys picking at Molly while Jon tried to stay out of the way and not get any on him.
The start of a long 2 hour process to remove lice - get to repeat the process this Saturday and then hopefully never ever again!!!!!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Phoenix and PJ's

On our drive home from Thanksgiving we got to stop off at the UNC hospital and meet our newest nephew Phoenix Wake Roten weighing 7lb 13 oz and measuring 21.5 inches. I always thought Molly was small until I saw him and now she seems like a giant or at least bigger. The whole McPherson clan was there and it was a nice prelude the Christmas when we will all be together at the cabin. While Molly has always known she had to share her Granny and BertBurt with 8 others she has not had to share Grandmommy and Grandaddy McP and I think it will take some time. Phoenix got the evil eye a few times from Molly when Grandmommy was holding him and Molly got as close as she could to stake her claim.
Jon with Phoenix while Molly looked on with Aunt Jenn.
Molly's thoughts - who is this kid that thinks he can take my place in Grandmommy's arms??
One day I will be able to get pigtails even but until then Molly will just have to keep up her cute smile to compensate.
Molly showing off her new PJ's! This is the one pair that fit the best and she refused to take them off once we tried them on her at 3pm. Jon's were a little snug and since I used the same pattern for myself let's just say with a pregnant belly it is a good thing shirts run long!! But it only took 4 hours of cutting/measuring/going to the internet over and over/sewing to get all three pairs done with a short break to drive and pick up the broken down truck!! I think we might keep up the tradition since we are only out $20 between fabric and elastic and next time I will know to give us all a little extra room in the waist. Once again my 3 years of Monday afternoon sewing with Mrs. Frew our neighbor in VA have paid off.

Saturday, November 27, 2010


Thanksgiving this year Jon, Molly and I got in the car Wednesday and drove up to MD to visit my parents. We realized a few hours into the drive his parents were driving down I-95 at the same time we were driving up, thanks to the droid we found a middle exit with food and stopped at exit 92 for a Wendy's dinner with his parents and sister Jenn on their way to have Thanksgiving with his other sister Kaitlin. Molly loved seeing her grandparents and aunt and she was so glad to be out of her carseat that she was nonstop entertainment having us all laughing as she danced and wiggled. We hit the road after dinner and finished the drive to my parents and Molly once again was in full spoil me form with my dad. Granny didn't get to see her because she is in Tennessee with my grandfather who has been having some bad days but we are thankful for all that she left us with. She had gone shopping so we had all the food we could ever imagine even if we had to split responibilites between Jon, Molly, my dad and myself. We were all assigned dishes to make our Thanksgiving feast and they turned out - the only person with a problem was me and the deviled eggs. We did not prepare everything my mom had bought for us but we did manage to get 7 dished on the table for 3 adults and 1 kid. Later that night we had our friends the Williams stop by for a dessert break on their drive home and we got some homemade cheescake and reesecup brownies. We have been playing games, watching football and having a good time. On our way home today we will get to meet our newest nephew Phoenix Wake Roten born yesterday to Katilin and Thomas!!

Attempt one at hard boiled - they were more soft boiled and could not be salvaged. Attempt two was much better!
Molly helping BertBurt with the chocolate dessert. She unwrapped the chocolate for him.
Molly showing BertBurt how to work the microwave.
Not too bad but not as good as if Granny was with us!
Our Thanksgiving Feast! Molly crashed watching the Auburn/Alabama game while her mom was beating BertBurt and her dad in a few games of Settler's of Catan.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Devo times with a 21 month old

Molly and I attempt to have Bible/devo time with some days better than others. I found some sticker coloring books and we have read those and done the activities. Today she brought me her Bible so we read the story she found flipping through the pages. As we were reading about Moses taking the people to the promised land Molly jumped off my lap ran and got her nerf gun and came back pointing it at pharaoh while we talked about crossing the red sea. I guess she wanted to be a guard??

All this to say I am super excited about what we are going to do for advent this year. A lady in my bible study told us about Jesse Advent Tree and we did an ornament exchange Monday. Each ornament tells of the story of salvation throughout the bible. When you put the ornament up you read the devo, scripture and sing a song. So in 25 days Molly will have had 25 stories in the Bible that tell of Jesus coming and what that means for us. I am excited to have structure, activities to do each day and something daily to remind me what a blessing it is that Jesus stepped off his throne in heaven and came to earth as a baby walked earth without ever sinning and then died and rose so one day we can join him in heaven!!
Now the hard part waiting until Jon is home each day to do the devo - I am no patient but I really want this to be a family thing so I guess I will have to be!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Awesome weekend in Charlotte

This weekend Jon had a single soldier retreat so Molly and I hide in his suitcase and went along - ok we really just hoped in the car and added our clothes to his suitcase. Every few months chaplains get to throw some amazing retreats thanks to Strong Bonds (some government funding) for the soldiers in their unit. Jon rotates between family retreats and single solider to cover all the needs but Molly and I go along either way. Jon and his assistant get to choose where they go and the past two retreats have been in Charlotte. He gave the soldiers a free afternoon Saturday so we went to Discovery Place and we had a BLAST!! Afterward we went to Dish a restaurant featured in Diner, Drive-in's and Dives and had some amazing food. Once we did all that we went back to the hotel for Molly to crash. The one reoccurring theme in his soldiers wanted was more training time which surprised us both but I guess they really do want to be people of character and wanted all they could get on it.
Molly singing with the wiggles the night before we left.
Pretty happy to be going somewhere with daddy since he was a training all morning.
The toddler section which Molly LOVED!! Water, blocks and toys who could ask for more?
The ramp that Molly claimed as her own. We had to work on sharing when other kids wanted to use it. I think she wanted to charge them for being on her ramp and getting her in trouble. She got a little better at sharing - but not much, at least not this one toy.
Look at the water dad - this was before she threw a bucket down the front of herself. They did have water aprons to wear but daddy didn't think it was necessary. (Molly was the only kid without one)
Upstairs in the big kid area - we were listening to a demo on neon lights. The lady asked how many kids watched CSI and not many kids raised their hands - Jon thought it was ridiculous to ask that question of kids. Then she asked about ChuckECheese where they use black lights and most every kid raised their hand - Molly saw this and raised both her hands. They best part was the ROYGBIV song and Molly busting out in dance moves that rival Dancing with the Stars. As you can see in the picture she did not want to sit with us she chose a bench in the front by herself.
The Air Chair - Jon pushed the buttons and air lifted them up a few feet. Molly was somewhat impressed.
Me laying on a bed of nails - not something I would want to sleep on but ok for a once in a lifetime experience.
Taking a break for a snack before going back for more.
Molly on the go again - we all had so much fun laughing and doing hands on things.
There are no pictures of dinner because we were right at the breaking point so we ate and got back to the hotel as fast as possible (with a few geocaches along the way) so Molly could take a nap at 6pm. The great thing about a single soldier retreat is that Molly and I get to sleep in as late as we want not having to worry about eating breakfast early so I can get her to childcare and be apart of the teaching with married couples.
I can't wait until the next retreat!! Only one more until things get a little crazy for us before Baby Girl McP joins us.