The Central Market and Me.

Adam and i have been working on our budget tonight and I am now adequately fired up to relay my annoyance at a little place called Central Market. Yes, you heard me. Central Market, I say. Whaaaaa? I love Central Market, you may reply. Well, yes. I had heard you say that about forty bahundred times and that's why I went today.

Whaaaa? You'd never been to Central Market before?
No. I hadn't. Moving on.

So, Adam and I had heard all about this Central Market. So, instead of hitting up our regular grocery store nearby, we loaded up the boys and journeyed to the Central Market.

Along with eleventy billion other people. We had to park in the next zip code, people. This is ridiculous.

So, after hiking across a sun-scorched desert, we made our way into the Central Market. Here we are! And here you are, America. Elbowing your way through the produce section. Because that's where we all were...funneled into the produce section like a bunch of carp, flailing about trying to grab the last head of romaine lettuce before we are made into canned tuna.

You must all make your way through the produce section before you are admitted entry into the MEATS! Yes, the meats. Where lines of people wait for their precious number to be called so that they can grab a pound of meat. Nay, not meat. Cows...that were fed sweet corn. Not just any sweet corn! No. Organic sweet corn. These cows were spoon-fed organic sweet corn while a little old lady sang lullabies to them. These cows were nestled into 100% organic cotton blankets, made in Peru. These cows were brushed with hemp leaves and fed peeled grapes. And now you must wait in line to eat their meat, America! A long line.

After you get your special magic meat in the special butcher (no, butcher is too harsh. I call him a ministerial assistant to the circle of life), you are funneled into the wines. Ah, row after row of wine and special fancy beers and fancy breads, too! At this point, I was whining to Adam. This is too much, I said. Too much. Suddenly, a Central Market employee appeared to my left. From whence did she come? Who knows! But there she suddenly was, beside me. Making sure that I was finding everything okay. Suspicious. Was she was dispatched to deal with the dissatisfied customer? If I had made a scene would she have taken me to the back where they keep the happy cows? I dared not to make a scene nor utter a complaint.

After the beer/wine/bread, we are funneled into the aisles of the grocery store. This should sound familiar, no? Well, it SHOULD. But it is far from familiar. There are like, maybe four aisles. Listen, people. If you are looking to fulfill your shopping needs for a family of four, do not go to the Central Market. Because you'll be looking for the Honey Nut Cheerios and the Central Market will not carry those. Instead they will have delicious O's of Barley and Soy or some other nonsense.

Overall, I was in a foul mood. I mean, I would definitely enjoy your beloved Central Market on a date night with my husband. The prepared foods look delicious and you can buy all kinds of fancy cheese and exotic tofurkeys and the produce is nice. But if you have prepared a weekly menu of super fancy food for your family using wholesome ingredients like one can of Rotel and Craisins or one can of cream of mushroom soup, then you should just go to a regular old grocery store.

I spent more than I had budgeted and I left without all my needed items purchased. So, someone bring me M&M's to give Henry when he tee-tees or poops on the potty and I might feel better about the Central Market. Because, the Central Market does not carry M&M's. No, they carry Wholesome Kernels of Organic Cocoa-Covered Black Beans.


New Day.

I am thankful that the Lord's mercies are new every day. Yesterday was a challenging Mama day but it is worth it, my friends! Today was a sweet (albeit crazy) day and I had a more refreshing night's sleep last night and was able to start again today with a renewed heart.

Plus the kids and I went to chick-fil-a this afternoon for an early supper/indoor playground. (Hey, our house gets really hot when I use the oven, okay? Or else I would totally be preparing a nutritious meal of cornish game hen over a bed of wild rice and a bitter three-leaf salad.)

Adam is off work on Saturday and Sunday so, after letting him sleep in a bit tomorrow, we will be happy to have him around and we are going out to my in-laws because my father-in-law's family is in town from Oklahoma (I have not met many of them, including Adam's paternal grandmother!)



This morning: Playground and museum.
This afternoon: Jennings' boys fight club.
Tonight: having my tubes tied. (Just kidding... but the thought did cross my mind this afternoon)



A sweet friend from church, mother of 3 older kiddos, lent me this book yesterday. It comes at a perfect time where I am needing wisdom and help in the disciplining in love department.

I'm thankful for friends to process through this with and who encourage my heart and remind me to pray over my babies, foremost.


The Timeout Chair.

Ever since Elliot learned to crawl and pull up on things, the sibling hostility level has reached new highs. Henry can give his brother a hug and then, moments later, when Elliot pulls up onto the train table, Henry will push him down with an ear-piercing shriek. Most times that Elliot is crawling towards toys, we hear "Aaaaah! Brother! Mama pick up brother!" (yelled with the same ear-piercing shriek). Several times, Henry has stomped on Elliot's hands while Elliot is crawling towards a toy. That is neat.

Needless to say, our timeout chair has gotten a lot of usage lately.


Meema & Dude

Meema and Dude are Adam's parents. I have mentioned them often since we've moved back to Texas but I just need to give credit where credit is due. I know that not everyone has a great support system and I'm sorry for that. But I do have a great local support system and I want to honor them! Meema and Dude live in Weatherford (about 25 minutes away) but are amazing grandparents and in-laws. They offer to watch the kids all the time and then will release me to go read, take a nap, run errands, go on a date with my husband, whatever! They are so generous and they love our kids so dearly. I love that our kids will grow up knowing that they are adored by their grandparents.

So, here's to you, Meema and Dude. The Bible says that those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed (Proverbs 11:25). You have refreshed and blessed me many a time so I pray that you are refreshed and blessed today!


A Thin Line.

Lessons Learned Raising Boys:
The line between a hug and a headlock is quite thin...

Note: I believe that the large amount of drool and mushed peas that has seeped into my phone has affected the quality of it's camera function.


Christmas in July

A tour of the Jennings' Christmas Cards of Yore:

Feliz Navidad 2006

Hope Your Christmas Is As Classy As We Are.

Have A Harry Christmas.

Happy Christmas

Tis the Season for Brotherly Love

Time to start thinking about 2011. I always say that...that I'll begin thinking early and then I procrastinate and have to come up with some random picture last minute and I'm sweating at 3 a.m. addressing Christmas cards and looking up addresses on whitepages.com because I never save the addresses from last year.

At least it's good to know that I have a tradition!



This is Henry before church this morning. He did not want to go. He said, "No Jesus. No church!"
But when we left church, he said "Jesus! Loves! Hee-Hee (Henry)!"
and when I asked what he did in church, he said, "I pray Jesus!" "I sing Jesus!"
Love it.

This is Elliot. You gots to keep your eye on that boy!

Well, Hidey Ho, good neighbor! We made it through Adam's first full weekend in the ER and I got the boys to church by myself (yay!) I don't know if I mentioned but the second church that we visited has become our church home and I am so happy. It is Christ Fellowship in Fort Worth. God is so good because, honestly, Fort Worth has so many churches that you could visit a different church every Sunday until you died and I did not want to do that. We love it there and I am making friends with some very authentic and welcoming lady-folks.

My friend, Haley, came to visit from Dallas yesterday and my old roommate, Lindsey, was also able to stop by for a bit. This made Adam being at work all weekend much easier. I love old friends and how they really know you and how you used to sleep on top of piles of clothes in your bed during college. Some character development needed to happen, folks...well, still does but I'm not sleeping on my clothes anymore. One day at a time...


Kish It Mama.

skinned knees.
darn dump truck.

One of my favorite things about a two year old is their firm belief in the healing power of kisses. Whenever a fall, trip, dive or tumble happens (which is often), Henry's immediate response is, Kish It, Mama (or Dada or whomever).

After the kish, he says, "It's Bedder" (better).


My Hub's Least Favorite Things...

You know, when you marry someone, you often marry much of their stuff. Not in a life-long commitment way, necessarily. But it's something to sort through and debate and compromise on. Maybe it's his neon sign he wants to display in the front window. Perhaps it's Cubs memorabilia that he wants to display on the china buffet.

Well, Adam inherited quite a few lovely items when he married me. His least favorite is girlfriend.

This is girlfriend.
Girlfriend is a wicker mannequin.
Girlfriend was bought before my junior year in college at a thrift shop between my hometown in Louisiana and Baylor (Waco, Texas). My roommates loved her! We dressed her seasonally and for holidays. She was our special friend.

Adam was less than thrilled with girlfriend. Every time we have moved, he has lobbied to have her sold or given away. She did serve a two-year sentence in the basement in Erie but he has not prevailed yet. Instead, she has been used for decoration at many a baby shower and birthday party and I'm pleased to report that she now greets visitors at the threshold of our home.


Currently Reading

I am liking this book so much. I am only a few chapters in but I love the voice that he creates for Little Bee's character, a 16-year old Nigerian girl written by a grown englishman! From page one, I was hooked. It is quirky and heartbreaking and funny and hopeful, all by chapter six.
If you want to know the rest, read the book!

Tax Collecting and Such.

To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’ “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’“I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Luke 18:9-13

I'm usually good at talking like the tax collector but my heart is often more similar to that Pharisee. I can be so critical, forgetting the grace extended towards me. Lately, God has been exposing fears and insecurities and sin from deep within me that I've been masking. It is raw and painful but it's sweet. He draws near to the broken and the Lord is making my heart more like that tax collector's.


Smackdowns and Tents.

One day, I'll have to take pictures of Henry and Elliot wrasslin' in Elliot's crib. Every day when Elliot wakes up from his nap, Henry is allowed to run into Elliot's room and climb in the crib with Elliot. Then, some sort of wrestling smackdown commences. I realized today that Henry had all these sweet baby moments for 18 months- hallmark moments where I was rocking him or singing to him and the world was quiet around us. You know, the stuff that baby food commercials are made of...

My Dear Elliot will have much fewer of these moments. He's often being rolled over or Henry is standing on his head on top of Elliot's back and the like. Elliot seems to love it so maybe it's a fair trade off.

Anyways, while Elliot was napping this morning, Henry had a picnic snack in his tent. He was cracking me up, sharing food with his stuffed animals. Every so often, I'd hear, I shared with monkey! or I shared with Bear! coming from inside the tent.


Cuddin Recap.

Adam is an only child and I have two brothers. Only my eldest brother is married and he has two boys...Henry & Elliot's only first cousins. Caleb (11) and Cade (8).

They came to visit us on Saturday and stayed until Tuesday morning, along with my Mom (Lulu)! We had a blast. Henry was highly entertained by his big cousins and we went to the science museum, swimming at my wonderful in-laws, and fro-yoed along with much more.

The big hit, though, was the air mattresses in our living room. THAT was a blast and a half.

Caleb, Cade, Henry & My Mom (Lulu)

Caleb & Henry

the nephews watching the 4-d movie at the science museum



Currently enjoying some sweet time with Henry & Elliot's cousins & Lulu, so I leave you with a picture of my three boys on the choo-choo today.


House Closing & Cheese Face

I forgot to mention that we closed on our house on Wednesday! (the house in Erie, PA that we just sold.)

Happy, happy day & thank you, Lord!
And I love the new, sweet little couple who moved in. It's nice when the people who buy your home are delightful and you are happy handing over the keys. (Although, honestly, I probably would've handed over the keys to a mobster at this point).

I will celebrate by showing you Henry's cheese face he makes in every photo now, accompanied by a loud Cheeeeeeeese!