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Sunday, May 25, 2008

The girls have a new baby cousin!

Congratulations to Bobbi and Brandon on the arrival on their beautiful baby girl (and my adorable new niece) Lacey Kailani. Lacey was born Saturday, May 24th at 5:46 pm. She weighed 7 lbs. 6 oz. and was 18 inches long.

Doug was able to visit little Lacey in the hospital yesterday evening before heading out to Buckeye to watch his UFC fight. He said holding her in his arms brought back lots of memories of when the girls were that small...two and half years ago....my, oh my, where has the time gone?

AK & Roo cannot wait to see their Aunt Bobbi and new baby cousin (that's all they talked about yesterday). Although it will probably be a while so that Lacey doesn't get exposed to their germs, it will be interesting to see just how well they handle having a brand new baby around...you know, good practice for when we end up having a third somewhere down the road...the very distant road.

Just testing...

Sorry for the constantly changing header and layouts- I am experimenting with Photoshop. Thank you for your patience!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Confessions of a Terrible Mom

**The purpose of this post is nearly to vent my personal frustrations and feelings of inadequacy at being a mother...I am in no way trying to solicit extra praise or encouragement, nor am I attempting to convey a "woest me" attitude. Today is a day where I just feel seriously inept at being a mother..."

Okay, so I know in the past I have said that the purpose of this blog is to keep everyone posted on the happenings of our lives, and for the most part I try to remain upbeat and positive about everything. Today, however, I need to clear my conscience by stating....I am a very terrible mother and wife. Seriously, I really am!!

I have recently come to the realization that I am much too impatient and I yell too much. I don't spend enough time playing educational games or reading books, or giving each of the girls one-on-one time. I am lousy at keeping up with the laundry and dishes, let alone the dusting, sweeping, mopping, and vacuuming that get seriously neglected. I try to be patient and keep my cool with the girls, I really do! But it seems like the harder I try, the more I just bottle up inside until it gets to the point where all that pent up frustration and anger just erupts! Of course, who is going to bear the brunt of it when I finally do explode? Yup - the girls, because they are the two with whom I spend most of my time. And I know it's not fair to them, it's not fair at all. And usually, all it takes is for me to see how hurt or scared they are by my little outburst to realize just how unnecessary and childish it was for me to react like that. They are only two and half years old, for crying out loud - they're still learning and exploring and getting into mischief is part of their growing process. I know that, and I understand that....so why am I so quick to get so upset with them?

And how do all you other moms out there do it? I swear, most days it seems like I am the only mother in the entire state of Arizona who scolds or gets stern with her children. And, of course, it always seems like all the other children are perfectly behaved - sitting when they are told to, eating without question when food is given to them, and basically listening to any directions given to them by their mothers. SO, why can't I be like one of those moms? Why am I so quick to anger, so ineffective in teaching and instructing, and so slow to realize when my actions are completely uncalled for and out of line? I love AK and Roo more than anything in this world - more than even I understand, but yet, why is it so easy for me to get so frustrated and upset with them? They are the sweetest, most patient, forgiving, and loving girls...seriously, words do not explain just how inadequate I feel at being a mother, nor can I apologize or make up enough for getting as upset with them as I do at times. I feel absolutely lousy today...miserable and guilty for being such a terrible mother. They deserve better than what I have been giving them, but I really wonder if I am capable of doing anything better?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Such a Tease

Cooler temps, intense winds, and possible thunder storms have brought a little bit of relief to the previous days scorching temps. I'd take the current conditions, storms and all, over what this summer is going to bring.

The girls and I attempted to get outside and enjoy the break in temperatures yesterday, but we didn't last long. After a few pretty powerful gusts of wind almost knocked each gal over, they decided they were "all done...all done mama!" SO, yesterday turned out to be a pretty chill day of reading books, doing puzzles, folding laundry, washing dishes, watching a movie or two, playing cars, coloring, and snuggling on the couch with my two beautiful girls. I tell ya...life doesn't get much better than that!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Blazing Temps and Now This...

Yup...the scorpions have struck again. Okay, well not literally struck (thankfully), but they are back. Apparently, scorpions do not like being outside in the triple digit temperatures any more than we humans do. I went into the downstairs bathroom this morning to brush my teeth after breakfast, and while I was at the sink AK came in behind me and says "Look mama, what is it?" Normally, she doesn't ask what things are, she tells (it's part of the whole "two years old" phase, I suppose) so her comment immediately caught my attention. I turned around to look where she was, and her tiny little finger was literally seconds away from getting stung by the biggest scorpion we have had at this house yet.

I panicked - yup - I actually screeched (which is something I rarely do). I grabbed AK real quick, shooed Roo out of the hallway, and grabbed the nearest shoe I could find (my trusty ol' flip-flop). Needless to say, that nasty little bugger didn't stand a chance against me or my flip-flop. Still, I am so irritated that a scorpion was in the house. We only have another month and half left here - couldn't it have waited until after we had moved out? I was seriously just starting to get comfortable again, not thinking we'd see any more, and then this nasty thing shows up. Needless to say, the girls beds have been moved away from the walls, the floors have thoroughly been swept and mopped, and we will now be wearing shoes at all times in the house. Nasty little things...they cause so much grief!

I am just grateful that neither AK or Roo were stung by the creepy critter. A trip to the ER would not have been a fun thing today.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Are You Kidding Me?

So, we are only in May and already we have seen blasted triple digit temperatures. I am not a fan. Take a look at our lovely 7-day forecast as reported by Channel 12 News (azcentral.com).

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
108/78
109/78 103/77 89/73 86/66 90/66 92/68

Yup - the National Weather Service has issued an Excessive Heat Advisory for Monday and Tuesday. Seriously - in May? You have GOT to be kidding me. I am already depressed for what this summer is going to bring...maybe it's time for us to move again...preferably far, far away from the scorching hot temperatures?

Thursday, May 15, 2008

400 Free Prints & 1 Free 8x8 Custom Cover Photo Book

**Okay, so I don't normally solicit my friends and family for Internet specials or offers, but I got this from a friend and I figured it was worth posting. I know the response has been overwhelming, and once the company reaches a certain number of print requests, they are going to cancel the offer...so, if you decide you want to sign up, you'll probably want to do it pretty quickly.**

There is a new online digital photo company called Artscow.com that is currently offering 400 Free Prints and 1 Free 8x8 Custom Cover Photo Book for new registrants to their website, just click Here to get started. Yes, that is correct.....FREE photo prints. All you have to do is click HERE to sign up and you will automatically receive 400 Free Prints. You can then earn additional print credits by selecting Promote Links to receive a custom link, which you would then post on your blog or facebook/myspace page or forward by email. For each person who joins artscow from your unique link and makes a purchase, you will receive 200 free credit points.
This is how it works....
It's a pretty decent website. I uploaded a bunch of my pictures yesterday, and even though the upload time seemed a little slower than other websites I've used in the past, I figure you really can't beat getting free prints. SO, for all those who enjoy getting free stuff just for signing up, go ahead and click HERE to begin enjoying this offer for 400 Free Prints and 1 Free 8x8 Custom Cover Photo Book.

Thanks! and Happy Printing!!

The Five Tag

I read this on another blog and thought it was kind of fun...hope you enjoy reading about the Fives (or multiples thereof) of my life!

10 years ago:
May 1998 - Let’s see, I was a junior at Upland High School and would have been preparing to go to prom with Ricky Lim - I was excited to go to the dance, but neither my date nor I were excited about going together. He wanted to go with someone else but was turned down, and the boy who I had a crush on at the time did not even know I existed. Oh well. My friend Casey let us tag along with her and her date, so after dinner at Burger King in Newport Beach, we went to the dance where I got ditched by my date...afterward, the three of us ended up having a totally awesome time. Also, I think I had just taken my AP Psychology exam (yuck) and I would have also been in the middle of Song (cheer) try-outs for my Senior Year…lots of hard work, but lots of fun.

5 years ago:
May 2003 - Doug was back from Utah and working in Costa Mesa as a Security System Salesman. I was living in the double-wide in Oceanside with Casey, working at Chick’s Sporting Goods and Southern California Beach Club. Doug and I were still just hanging out (we did not “officially” start dating until July 2003). My sister Cynthia was a month away from getting married, and I was finishing up with my Medical Assisting coursework at Palomar College.

5 months ago:
December 2007 - We had been in Arizona for 6 months and I was working evenings at Target. Doug was putting in long hours at UOP (which is still happening, but that’s besides the point). I started working as a PT Night Auditor for a hotel towards the end of December. All four of us had our birthdays the previous month - Doug’s on the 5th (27 years-old), mine on the 8th (26 years-old), and AK and Roo’s on the 25th (2 years-old) - so we were trying to think of fun, and affordable, things we could do for Christmas. We ended up staying in Arizona for the holidays, although we really would have liked to have been on the beaches of Oceanside.

5 Hours ago:
Doug and the girls and I went out for dinner (neither of us had to work tonight). Doug, Roo, and I ordered pizza (half cheese, half pepperoni) and a green salad, AK ate rice and chow mien from the Panda Express next door to the pizza parlor. We then went and looked at some mini vans at the dealership where Doug works part-time, then finished off the night with ice cream cones from Chick-fill-a. All-in-all, a very fun (and delicious) night!

5 things on my to-do list:
1. Homework
2. Empty the dishwasher
3. Pay bills
4. Go to Lowes and/or Home Depot to try and find the paint remover Cynthia recommended
5. Go through the stuff in the garage and sort things out for packing and [hopefully] a garage sale

5 snacks I enjoy:
1. Brownies
2. Ritz Baked Sour Cream and Onion Chips
3. Fresh-picked California Oranges
4. Yogurt (peach and vanilla are my favorites)
5. Big Stick Popsicles

5 things I would do if I were suddenly a billionaire:
1. Pay off all of our debt (credit cards, student loans, and cars)
2. Buy a home…in Oceanside…on the beach
3. Buy homes for all of our siblings…wherever they wanted…no strings attached
4. Travel, travel, travel
5. I would feel guilty if I did not donate to at least one or two charities

5 of my BAD habits:
1. Picking at zits (yes, I will admit to doing this - and I get a lecture from Doug every time)
2. Letting the dishes pile up in the sink before I get them loaded into the dishwasher
3. Not folding the clothes as soon as they come out of the dryer - they usually sit on the over-sized chair in the family room for a few days before I get around to folding them.
4. Letting this blog distract me from doing the homework I should be working on right now.
5. Drinking milk or juice straight out of the carton.

5 places I have lived:
1. Upland, CA
2. Oceanside, CA
3. Salt Lake City, UT
4. Islamorada, FL (it’s in the Florida Keys)
5. Chandler/Gilbert, AZ

5 jobs I have had:
1. Ice-cream scooper at Baskin-Robbins
2. Receptionist and Cashier at a motorcycle shop (Mountain Motor Sports)
3. Cafeteria dishwasher at BYU
4. Cashier/Keyperson/and Department Manager at Chick’s Sporting Goods
5. Being a MOM (this is by far the best, but most challenging, job of all)

5 things most people don't know about me:
1. I slept with “Pinky,” my pink teddy bear (it was a Christmas gift from my grandpa when I was a child), every night up until Doug and I were engaged
2. I usually only shave my legs once a week because I have really sensitive skin that breaks out in really bad (and painful) rashes
3. I have never had a sip of alcohol, never tried a cigarette, and have never taken illegal drugs
4. I can only sleep if I am wrapped up in a blanket - even if it’s 110 degrees at night
5. I have patches of skin across my chest and under my arm that are completely white because there is no pigmentation in those areas

**I am now supposed to "tag" five people to complete this same questionnaire on their individual blogs, but I figure since everyone is so busy with all the happenings in their lives, I would leave it open to anyone who has time to complete it**

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Under Construction

Please accept my most sincere apologies to all those who have been confused/annoyed/irritated or have simply wondered "what the heck is going on with that blog?" the past few days. I seem to have become obsessed with creating the perfect blog...you know, one that just screams "this is totally Hoopes" when you see it. I definitely think simplistic is best for us...as much as I like all the designs and backgrounds out there, none of them really fit all four of us. I see my sisters' and friends' blogs, and think they are just the cutest, coolest, most unique, totally clever and witty things around...and continually think ours is lacking. Yes, this is probably due to my innate feeling of inadequacy on anything I do, but HEY - I am working on overcoming that.

Anyways, the real point of this post was simply to say sorry for the different designs, templates, and layouts you may have seen over the past week. I am experimenting with HTML and web page coding, things that are totally foreign to me, so please excuse the mess while our blog is under construction...I will figure it all out eventually.

Playtime at the Park

One of AK and Roo's favorite places to go is the park. Generally, one of their first requests in the morning and often one of their last requests at night is "Mama, I want to go to park...play, play, play!" or "I like park...sisty like park. We go to park and play" (complete with hand guestures and all...it really is very cute).

Luckily, we have been fortunate to have had relatively cool weather the past few days (by cool, I mean in the high 80's as opposed to the high 90's or low 100's that are threatening this weekend's forecast) so we have been trying to cram in as much playtime as possible before the temperatures become unbearable.

Here are some pics from a recent trip to the playground at Tarwater Elementary, which could be a 3 minute walk from our house, but when you add in strollers, stuffed companions, and the frequent stops we make to look at rocks, flowers, and letters stomped in the concrete, it often takes closer to 15 minutes. I have to admit, at times I just want to get there and start playing so I can get back home and out of the heat, but then I am reminded by my beautiful 2 1/2 year old girls of all the little wonders in this world for granted.

I am thankful for AK & Roo...for their sweet spirits, for their love of life, and for the constant joy they find in the simplest of things. Here's to plenty more playtimes at the park, and all the memories they may bring.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

To all the mothers, grandmothers, and soon-to-be mothers I know, I hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

It's been a long, slow night at work...I have finally succumbed to using the guest computers in the Business e-Room because there is seriously nothing else to do. I suppose I could work on some homework, but what fun would that be? Besides, I've had a hard time concentrating today - it seems like I can't stay focused on anything for longer than 2 minutes. It's been one of those days where I can't shut my mind off and my thoughts are going in a million different directions all at once. I keep thinking about past events, people I once knew, people I've lost touch with, things that could have turned out differently had I spoken up, kept my mouth shut, or made a different decision, and wondering just what the future has in store for me. I keep thinking about my faults and shortcomings and of the things I'd like to do differently and better. It's exhausting, to be honest - I really just wish I could turn my brain off for a few minutes to get some much needed mental peace. Have you ever had one of those days, or am I alone on this one?

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Just a Little Update

For the record, I (Becky) gave my notice of resignation to the hotel this morning. As of June 1, 2008 I will no longer be working as a night auditor. Apparently, continuous lack of sleep is bad for your mental, physical, and emotional health (who would have thought, right)?! Not to mention the strain it puts on your marriage and family.
So, to everyone who has worried about the long nights and sleepless days my job was creating, thank you for your prayers and concern - we are finally in a position where I will be able to quit working and focus first, on my family, and second, on school.
I also want to say thank you to an amazing and absolutely wonderful husband who continues to work harder than most people realize. Doug - I want you to know that AK, Roo and I love and appreciate EVERYTHING you do for us. XOXOXOXOXO.

Mischievous Duo

One of the most challenging things about having 2 1/2 year old twins is the amount of mischief they can manage to get into in a very short period of time. AK & Roo have always been energetic little gals, but lately it seems like they move at only two speeds - super-duper fast and non-stop. And, like any normal toddler their age, they are curious about anything and everything and must explore by touching, tasting, and feeling. The phrase "look but don't touch" simply does not register in their brains.
SO, just in case you're wondering how much trouble two pint-size gals can get into, here are some pictures from two Sundays ago. Doug was working at the dealership, and I made the mistake of dozing off on the couch while I thought they were napping - this all happened in less than twenty minutes. I had thought that my collection of acrylic paints was totally out of their reach; turns out these two gals are seriously good climbers. While the pictures are just of the floor, the gooey acrylic mess was also on the walls and led from the Master Bedroom into the hallway. The girls dresses are ruined, and the carpet is still tinged blue. The spatter on the floor covers about 3/4 the length of the mattress...just so you can get an idea of how quickly paint spreads between two mischievous girls.

The weapon - an 8oz. bottle of BRIGHT turquoise paint


The main point of impact - Doug's side of the bed


Fallout Point #1

Fallout Point #2


To their credit, the girls did try to clean up after themselves. They used an entire pack of wet wipes, but couldn't make a dent in the monstrous blue mess that was already made.

AK's mug shot (a total look of "What's the big deal mom? I don't know what you're getting so upset about...it's just a little paint.")
Roo's mug shot (I love the look of complete "Uh-oh!" in this picture. Can you imagine how hard it was for me to stay mad at such sweet looking girls?)

More Belated Congratulations...

Just wanted to congratulate new parents, Aaron and Laura, on the arrival of their adorable son Jack. Jack came into the world on Thursday, May 1, 2008 at 1:01 am, weighing in at 6 lbs. 12 oz. at 19 inches long. Congratulations guys!!

Also, congratulations to Wes and Ashlee on the birth of baby#2, Wesley Adam, Jr., who arrived sometime the last week of April?? I don't have the details yet, but Doug is working on getting those for me so I can publish the full details of the good news here on our blog. Congratulations!!