Oklahoma, O-K!

We love Oklahoma. We were all riding in the car and Ben piped up with the 2nd verse about his honeylamb so I figured I needed to get it on tape. We all stared at him in amazement since none of us knew all of those words! Apparently, this is what they teach in Kindergarten in Oklahoma and that’s OK by us!

Happy Birthday, Dear Ben!

HPIM6432

My baby is 4. And he’s not a baby (hasn’t been for awhile but I’ve been blissfully ignorant). He has taken THE. LONGEST. TIME. to potty train. All of my other boys were trained before 3 or at least right when they turned 3. I know boys take longer but aaaaaaaah! He’s finally got it…almost. We’re still working on #2 but he is doing so very good at staying dry in skivvies all day. He picked out a dragon birthday cupcake-cake and we all had green frosting everywhere for the evening. Bennie is such a joy. I just love to kiss his freckled face and squeeze him for hugs. He is a delight. I’m so glad he’s mine.

Ben’s Eye Surgery: Before & After

The bed so generously given to us by a good friend – thanks, Becky! Pre-surgery but anticipating his new accommodations in Mom & Dad’s room!

It’s been so long and I haven’t been able to write out the details. So, you’ve been spared, dear reader. However, things went perfectly well. The cyst was about a half an inch long when it came out and the surgeon said it looked like a calcified cyst. A normal overgrowth of cells that most likely is not cancerous or anything dangerous or recurring, though they did send it off for tests but told us that we probably wouldn’t be hearing anything (which, knock on wood, we have not!). He still has the tape on them but the incision and stitches look good – they will dissolve, eventually. He is a trooper!

Spring Things – Polyphemous & Luna Moths

Polyphemous Moth.

Luna Moth.

The kids are on a moth kick ever since the huge polyphemous moth we found coming home from dropping Cole off at youth conference. This is a dead and quite dry luna moth that Don found for them. So pretty for a moth! That cute, chubby hand holding it belongs to Ben.

The Cheerios Incident

Just last week, we had the Fruity Pebbles incident. After this Cheerios incident, we might have to give up on cereal altogether and start eating more oatmeal! I came out of the shower to find Ben had tried to get himself more Cheerios. When I saw him he had a glass shard the size of a pencil in his hand, rolling it around, so I calmly asked, “Where did you get that???” and then I saw the broom. He was barefoot and had tried to clean it up himself. I could hardly be mad at such a sweet effort. It was a miracle we weren’t in the ER that day! He had not a cut, bruise, or drop of blood on him anywhere. We were headed to the church that day to put on a luncheon and I think the good Lord must have wanted us there instead of the ER.

Ben’s First Article of Faith x2

Bennie: Book Club & Huskers

Rule #1: This book club is not for kids. Do not bring your kids. Find a babysitter. So — I broke rule number 1 already and since I was the only one doing it, I arranged in advance for the hostess to have Lightning McQueen at the ready. She had better toys than we do (dinosaurs and cars do the trick!) and Ben was super quiet upstairs…for the first hour and a half. Nearing the second hour, when he had enough, Ben devised a surefire way to get me to exit Book Club quickly: come downstairs naked. A high school friend reminded me that, yes, indeed, this is how we roll in Nebraska. Unfortunately, my day was not over yet!

I promptly went to Barnes & Noble to purchase September’s book. I figured if I bought the book they’d have to let me come back, right? So….sitting in Barnes & Noble, I purchased a sandwich and cookie. I ate the sandwich. Ben ate the cookie (lunch=cookie when you’ve had the morning that he had entertaining book club ladies). Our conversation went like this:

Mom: “So, Ben, do you even know that you live in Texas now?”

Ben: “Yeah.”

Mom: “Do you like Texas?”

Ben: “Yeah.” (Boys are such great conversationalists).

Mom: “So. Are you a Husker or a Longhorn?” (At this point, I’m just fishing for info).

Ben (mouth full of cookie): “A Longhorn!”

Mom: “Well, that’s not gonna fly! You are a HUSKER!!! You ARE a Husker, right?!

Ben: “I’m a Husker. Do they fly?”

20 minutes after blog entry: I had to remove the word “naked” from the title and the tags because within this short amount of time I have had too many hits from freaks in this world searching for “naked boys” and getting my blog. Unbelievable. What is this world coming to?! I am actually physically ill over the thought. I didn’t even consider such sick things when I wrote the article. I will take your IP address and send them to the police. Disgusting. May God have mercy on your soul.

Bennie Has a Grill-Friend (aka Girlfriend)

Pretty self explanatory. We love it! We are going to miss the Derr family but I think that Ben might miss Kaylie the very most.

Ben’s Minky Dinosaur Blanket

I posted earlier about Ben wanting specific fabric at Joann’s…well, here is what we did with our two yards of each fabric: dinosaurs on one side – green Minky fabric on the other. The blanket was super easy to do – finished in one afternoon – but it took longer than it should have (doesn’t it always?) because the heat-n-bond I used to put the B-E-N letters on gummed up my needle and kept breaking the green Sulky thread. If anybody knows how to do a satin stitch so this won’t happen, please, please let me know!

Step 1: Lay fabric out with right sides together. Cut to the dimensions you want (I could use tips on accurately cutting large rectangles!).

Step 2: Print out the letters you want in the font of your choice – thicker is better and easier to sew regardless of what your stitch will be (best are zig zag or satin stitch).

Step 3: Cut out the letter and either trace it onto freezer paper or staple it to freezer paper and cut out the same shape out of the freezer paper. Create the letter so the waxy side is on the back.

Step 4: Iron the freezer paper, waxy side down, onto the fabric you want to create the letters – mine was brown. Cut out carefully with as smooth of edges as possible. After they’re cut, you can remove the freezer paper if you’d like to.

Step 5: Adhere heat-n-bond to the BACK side of the letters as per the directions on your product. I would highly recommend using a lighter version than the ultra heat-n-bond that I used because when satin stitching it created enough heat to gum up my needle and keep breaking the Sulky thread I was using so for the three large letters I had I had to clean the needle and rethread about twenty times! I, myself, will not be using a wonder-under type thing again but pin my letters in place securely and just sew them on that way. Tip: I ironed one letter on at a time while the others were pinned to the fabric so I would have a visual guide as to where each letter should be juxtaposed with the other two.

Step 6: I started out satin stitching but ended up having to zig zag because of the gummy needle situation (see above). To make a satin stitch with your machine, just widen your stitch width and shorten the stitch length to 1 or so (you can test this out and create a satin stitch to your liking).

Step 7: Return blanket top to match up – right sides together – with the minky bottom and sew all around the edges using about a half of an inch seam. I used a dinner plate to round the edges of mine – easier for kids to make their own beds with that shape of blanket! Then I sewed all around, leaving a 4″ to 5″ opening to turn the blanket inside out.

Step 8: Topstitch all around the edge as close to the edge as you can get while fingerpressing the opening and stitching it closed. Then, sew around the blanket again about a half of an inch inside the edge to give it a finished look. All done! Easy as pie. Definitely a favorite utilitarian blanket around here – and it looks so cute in Ben’s room.

Please, please if you know of a faster, easier or better way to do any part of this project, please let me know!

The Benjasaurus Reads!

He’s so darn cute. Just wanted to share something simple since I’m really under the weather today. That’s what I get for bragging that we just hadn’t got sick like everybody else around us. I should know better by now. Plus, I’m thinking it’s time for a giveaway – gotta think up something good to share!

Ben’s Afraid of Santa!



















I guess he was really afraid! There are two bigger chunks of video that I might get around to uploading on youtube but for now this is how “calm” he was after the candy cane and stuffed reindeer!

Ben Still Needs Naptime

Well, I wanted to keep Bennie up so he would go to bed on time one evening and around 3 p.m. this is what I found in the family room. I guess he’s just not ready to outgrow his nap (that’s fine by me!). What a kid! He was snuggled up sideways in our red chair-and-a-half. He’s been called a girl twice this week PLUS we were served two boys’ and one girl’s happy meal the other day. I think it may be time for a haircut but I’m not ready. Lili’s hubby, Ron, says he would look like the Wendy’s girl if his hair was red. Yeah, probably. He is such a great kid! He’s just so rough and tough and wears camo so much we never considered he’d look girly in any way!

Bennie Wants Pie!



















I guess he was really hungry for pie. I thought he’d had enough while we were at Nan’s house watching general conference — maybe not!