Friday, December 17, 2010

Brutha Man

The eldest Murray boy was able to come up from Florida again and stayed the entire week of Thanksgiving.  The first weekend was youth hunting season.  

6 minutes on the first day before final shooting time...

he shot a four point buck.  Let me reiterate: first day, cold, in a tree stand for most of the day, cold, new shotgun.  

WAY TO GO K!  We are so proud of you.

I didn't manage to take many more photos that week, but here are all the boys before K left:

Well looky there, 4 boys all looking at the camera.  I'd like to take credit for this, but I'm sure it was dumb luck.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Christmas Card Reject

I had *such* a hard time deciding on a Christmas Card this year from Shutterfly.  Here's one that didn't make the cut.  I'd share the one that did, but you'll probably be seeing it in your mailbox very soon. :)

Picture Joy Christmas
Make a statement with Shutterfly Christmas photo cards.
View the entire collection of cards.

I hope to receive a $25 credit from Shutterfly for this post. Bloggers: to apply for your credit, see Freebies 4 Mom.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Do you Ebates?

I've decided, this year I'm doing all my shopping online from the same retailer.  Probably Target or Amazon.

Ebates is a shopping site that gives you up to 26% Cash Back every time you shop online for stuff that you were going to buy anyway. You can shop at over 1000 stores including eBay, JCPenney, Macy's, Nordstrom,, Walmart, Kohl's and Home Depot. Plus you get additional savings with exclusive coupons, free shipping offers, and limited-time sales!  
No cost or commitment, you only have to click! {& remember to click}  My last payout went directly into my paypal then right into my checking account.  Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy.

Sign up with Ebates today and we'll each get a $5 bonus when you make your first purchase!
CLICK HERE cause I could use some free cash.

Happy shopping!!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Christmas Cards from Shutterfly

It's time to start thinking about Christmas cards {already}.  I was excited to see that Shutterfly has a line of cards that contributes 10% of net sales to the American Lung Association.  It  just feels great to purchase something that I needed regardless and have some of the proceeds go to a great cause.  Other support a cause cards available are LIVESTRONG, and Heifer International.  

Since I lost my Mom to Lung Cancer in 2007, the ALA sits near to my heart.  Here are the cards I'm leaning towards:


Tough choice.

Shutterfly has tons to offer beyond just Christmas Cards including:  photo holiday cards, gift tags, and my favorite: photo books.  I used a great coupon code to score a photo book for the boys' 2nd birthday.  The site is very user friendly and all cards can be customized to your liking {even the inside}.  They even have the option to address and send directly to your recipient.  I have used that a few times when I haven't gotten a card in the mail in time.  Somehow, I forget that it takes 4 days for mail to arrive in Central Florida.  On top of that, Shutterfly offers great prices and often sends out coupon codes, so be sure to "sign up".  I have a back stock of blank photo cards from their free card offers.

Check out Shutterfly and have fun deciding on christmas cards,desk calendars, and canvas wall art .  I'm sure I'll end up with several since I won't be able to choose.

Shutterfly gave me 50 free cards for writing this post, you can get them too.

Bloggers get 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly, follow the arrow à 

Painting Pumpkins

Well over a month ago, we got pumpkins.  I had all intentions of letting the boys paint them.  This weekend, we finally did and the boys had a BLAST.

Not to much to explain.  Get pumpkin, add paint.

Here are the photos:

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Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Birthday Celebration

A lot of people avoid birthdays or try to forget about them all together.  I don't, screw it.  People will "guess" your age anyway, they might have it right.

We (Jason and I) don't do much celebrating since our birthdays are 2 days apart.  When he talked  texted about it this year, I asked for dinner out.  He replied "Prime time hunting season, that's not going to happen".  So--I took 2 of my besties up on their offer for a birthday celebration.  He got what he wanted--to hunt, I got dinner out.  Win-Win

Sara, Marie, and I met at the Cheesecake factory for yummy drinks and dessert.  I can not tell you what a lifesaver these two are.  And dinner out every so often (not often enough) is therapy.  So we still talk about kids, husbands, work, life.....but we don't count calories or carbs and get in some much needed grown  up girl time.

Here we are.....Sara, Me, Marie

My dessert.  Kudos to the waitress for checking my ID and remembering my first name in order to personalize my fantastic treat.  Red Velvet Cheesecake.....YUM

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Monday, November 1, 2010


I'd call this a Wordless Wednesday post, but it's Monday.  Only posting because it makes me smile.

I needed that.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Treats Only

Beggar's night was tonight in our small town of Pataskala.  We, as usual, just did a quick visit to the Nursing Home.  It's all indoors, safe, and warm.  The residents get a kick out of the kids in their costumes, which is fun to see too.

Louden & Keegan were dragons.  I picked their costumes up super cheap from another Twin Mommy.  So, what they lack creativity, they make up for in cuteness.  

Keegan: saying cheeeeesseeee
Mommy with the boys.  Keegan (l) & Louden (r)

The back of the costume, I have no idea who this is :)  I'm glad I don't do this look alike thing very often.  

No thanks, Louden, Mommy doesn't like dots.  Um, we got a LOT of Dots. 
Waiting until 6 to get started.  Louden up front, Keegan checking out the pumpkins in the case.

Keegan being silly.

Back at home, enjoying a treat before we go to visit our neighbors.
Happy Halloween!!!!!  

The leaves, they are a changing

Well, due to my inability to blog on a regular basis, the leaves have since changed and fallen (the process was kicked into overdrive thanks to the tornado warnings earlier this week).

I'm trying to get better at my DSLR (camera with a lens), but still shoot on auto.  I hope I get a class for Christmas (subtle, shameless hint).  But, these will have to do for now.  

The weather has been unseasonably warm, until today.  The boys love it outside and we have to fight to get them in every night.  

Here's Louden, Daddy and Keegan in the background:
Keegan, I get this look a lot...

The leaves (Jackie: this is for you)

The boys.
And with Daddy trying to mulch up some leaves on Daddy's new fancy, schmacy, zero turn, 8 mph, 54" cut mower.  

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

a pickin' and a grinnin'

This post is WAY OVERDUE, but procrastination has gotten the best of me again.

As you'll remember, I took the boys to pick a pumpkin last year at Lynd's Fruit Farm, located just a few minutes from our house.  This year, we picked apples too.  We met our friends Sara (with Bennett & Kendyll) and Alicia (with Will & Sam) to pick Red and Golden Delicious.  Upon entry, the greeter at the U-pick station said "eat all you want".  I'm pretty sure between six 2.5 year olds, we left behind 100 applies with one tiny bite....

Here are some photos from the day:

Keegan, Bennett, Kendyll, and Louden
Kendyll & Keegan, Can you even stand it? Totally unprompted
On our way to pick $1 pumpkins

Playing in the fruit crates

We LOVE to get out with our friends and do it every chance we can.  It's fun to expose the kids the new things, and watch how they react.  

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

JDRF Walk Update

Although diabetes and its complications kill one American every three minutes and accounts for 32 percent of Medicare expenditures, the good news is that there is real hope for a cure through research funded by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
If you're anything like me, that statistic blows your mind.   
This past Sunday, Alicia, Sara, and I participated in a 2 mile fundraising walk sponsored by the JDRF on campus at OSU.  I was initially intrigued to do this to support my friend, whose 7 year old daughter was recently diagnosed.  When Alicia read my post, she reminded me that her husband was diagnosed 5 1/2 years ago and that she would be in full support of our team by walking and donating.  Alicia's family went all out since this was the first time they were able to get involved in this fundraiser.  
Our team donations totaled $960!!! 

Here's a photo of Sara, Me, and Alicia with all our kids:

Also walking were Alicia's Mom: Nancy, Husband: Bryan, Sara's Husband: Tim and Tim's parents.
Although the temperature was thought to be in the 50s, it was extremely cold and windy that morning.  We were lucky the rain held out until we were leaving.  I think the JDRF did a great job and had great toddler friendly snacks before the event.  If you've ever been around toddlers, snacks are a must....always.  I may not have diapers, but you can rest assured that I have food on me. :)
I was so happy to do this to support Bailey, Bryan, and the JDRF that offers support others and their families suffering with Type I Diabetes.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Grandma's Visit

We were so happy to have Jason's Mom (aka Grandma) come stay with us while our sitter was on vacation.  Last year, I had to take vacation to stay home with the boys.  This gave Grandma some much needed kid time while allowing Jason and I the chance to keep up with our busy work schedules.

I tried to take a photo of them all together, this is about the best we can do:

The boys LOVED having her here.  It's remarkable to see the difference in their attitudes when they don't have to be loaded up and taken away from home everyday.  I tried to get her to move here, she declined. (psst, Jackie:  I wasn't really kidding)

On top of everything else, she did every stitch of laundry for me one day.  Including carrying everything from our top floor down the basement.  I don't think she ever wants to see another stair.

This will keep you young, Grandma.

Uh, yeah, that's a bat.  The boys have mad takedown skills.  

Here's a photo right before she left.

I would have taken one of her driving away, but I was too busy crying.  

Monday, August 30, 2010

Twins, Twins, Everywhere

While we live in a subdivision (that used to be an apple orchard) on an acre, we are surrounded by farms that alternate corn and soybean crops.  We see a lot of deer around here.

We recently had a few visitors in our backyard.  A doe with her yearlings which were twins.  From what Jason tells me, twins are common with deer, although I'm not sure they're called twins.  We also had a set coming to visit last year. 

Louden went out to check them out.  The deck is his favorite place right now, I'm dreading winter when we get stuck inside. 

The deer were not spooked by L at all.  They were even OK with me with a camera.  Jason came out and they took if they knew

Here is a photo of L checking them out.

&& the babies....

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Bailey's Boys

I've been a bad blogger...I know. I mean well. I've been inspired to get off my virtual butt and blog.

My dear friend called me this week to tell me that her daughter, Bailey (7), was diagnosed with Type I juvenile diabetes. I've known Bailey's mom long enough to not remember when we met. We were attached at the hip while in school and have managed to keep in touch since, even across the country.  When she called me with Bailey's news, I did what any friend would do.  I told her that it was OK to be upset, I told her that she is strong enough to maintain the disciple Bailey needs, and I told her that in the grand scheme of things this is just a speed bump.  I immediately wanted to do something, but what could you possibly do from 1200 miles away?

The boys and I have adone several 5K fundraisers this year and was super stoked to find one in October for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, held at OSU nonetheless.  GO BUCKS!!

So, to my point.  I've created a team to raise money in Bailey's name, Bailey's Boys.  Cute, eh?  If you'd like to walk with us, click here.  If you'd like to donate toward our $100 goal, click here. Remember, all donations are tax deductible.

Bailey is lucky to have a great support team.  Her parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends all have her back. 

Here is some info on JDRF:

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation is the worldwide leader for research to cure type 1 diabetes. It sets the global agenda for diabetes research, and is the largest charitable funder and advocate of diabetes science worldwide.

The mission of JDRF is to find a cure for diabetes and its complications through the support of research. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that strikes children and adults suddenly, and can be fatal. Until a cure is found, people with type 1 diabetes have to test their blood sugar and give themselves insulin injections multiple times or use a pump - each day, every day of their lives. And even with that intensive care, insulin is not a cure for diabetes, nor does it prevent its eventual and devastating complications, which may include kidney failure, blindness, heart disease, stroke, and amputation.

Since its founding in 1970 by parents of children with type 1 diabetes, JDRF has awarded more than $1.4 billion to diabetes research, including $101 million in FY2009. In FY2009, JDRF funded research projects in 22 countries throughout the world, including more than 40 human clinical trials.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

One on One

Last Thursday, I decided to try out some One on One time with Louden.  After a craptastic morning, Mommy decided some pool time was in order.  So I picked up L from the sitter, which had to trick K with some guacamole to sneak out, and headed to the Plain Township pool in New Albany.  We met up with my sister in law, niece, nephew, and her sister and girls. 

 L immediately headed for these goggles and knew exactly what to do.  2 hours later, I had a tired little boy, sunburned shoulders, and relaxed mind (even if I didn't get to sit down at all).  L did great and has no fear of the water.  Hopefully, K and I will get to go soon.

I know one on one is good for them, but you can't help to feel badly for the one left behind.  The boys have never been apart before, unless one was too ill for the sitter.


Friday, June 25, 2010


Maddy Pictures, Images and Photos

We have been trying so hard to encourage the boys' language development lately.  It seemed as if they were perfectly content not speaking.  They would point, grunt, whine, and use sign language to be functional.

As you'll remember from this post, I took the boys to Licking County Help Me Grow to have them evaluated.  Only K qualified for services for an expressive language delay.  

Since then we have had several visits from the Early Intervention Specialists to monitor the boys' progress.  They have been slow to start, but we are finally seeing some great vocalizations from both boys.  The EI Specialist was very excited and tried to comfort me.  To say the least, this language delay has been weighing down on me quite hard and I was expecting faster results.  Thanks for my great friends that have been supportive and listened to my vents.  I guess as a parent, you just always feel responsible and want the very best for your kids. 

 I have looked into private speech therapy to give them an extra boost, but there is a hefty waiting list, so we shall see.  I'm excited to see how the next few months go and hope to report new words soon.

I know, I'll regret this one day when they're never silent again....but I can't wait to watch their language grow!!!



Thursday, June 24, 2010

One baby

My friend, Pam, of Pyjammy is doing a giveaway on her blog.

Here's what I want to win:

No offense to the singleton Moms....just know, it's different for us.  Pam trumphs me, she has 2 1/2 year old identical triplet boys (which are super cute by the way). 

Click HERE to visit her site and enter her giveaway for a $20 from her shop Triple Dip Shop.  There is a ton of stuff to pick from, or you could get me this shirt :P


Thursday, June 17, 2010

14 miles

I've been a very bad blogger. But in efforts to catch up, here's what we've been up to. 14 miles....we've walked 14 miles to support causes close to our heart. The first was the March for Babies in April.

Left to Right: Sonya (Courtney's sister), Courtney (minus Olivia since the weather was unpredictable), me, Vicky. In front: Keegan, Louden, and Parker (34 weeker)

5 miles - 1 hour 40 minutes pushing this massive stroller.  Fortunately, we beat the rain by minutes.  Team "Murray Boys" raised $245 for the March of Dimes.  The Williams' intended to join us and were heavy contributors to our donations, but Sara fell ill that week.

I made shirts for all the kids using the bleach pen and freezer paper technique seen HERE.   

Sorry about the crappy pictures, they were taken with a cell phone.  I was going to take a photo of everyone together in their t's but I forgot, I have 2 year are impossible.  Keegan is sporting his "I roll with preemies" tshirt today :)

Next up was the SMA walk in Cincinnati.  This was a 5K to support the battle against Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA), the Number ONE genetic killer of infants. We were happy to join in Team Sweet Girlies.  We walked I will be meeting my friends Sara and Brook. Brook lost her identical twin girls to SMA last year, see her story HERE.

The event was moved inside due to rain, but since it was held at Xavier University, we were still able to participate.  Tootsie Roll was a big sponsor, here are the boys enjoying a "prize" for winning a game (which involved pulling a sucker off a board).

Lots of fun activities including balloon animals (these were dogs at one time)

& we took a break to dance and steal some unattended balloons

Next up was the Race for the Cure .  52,000 participants....completely overwhelming.  The photos speak for themselves:

Courtney with Olivia on her first 5K.

The start


How do you NOT take a picture of that?

Finally, the one most near and dear to my heart, the Lung Walk.  It was important for me to do this, rain or shine, in remembrance of my Mom, which lost her battle with small cell lung cancer 3 years ago.  I would give anything for a hour, to introduce her my kids, but that's not happening.  All I can do is live my life in a way that would make her proud.  This walk, as small as it seems, would have made her smile.

A surprise from my friend, Sara!!!  Well, I ruined the surprise, but it was a beautiful gesture.

We wore yellow because it was Mom's favorite.  Had I known how unflattering this look was, I would have gotten a mu mu. :)

Could this be any cuter?  After the race, we hung out, re-hydrated, and the kids watched the train.

I made shirts this time, too.  Simply with iron on transfer paper.

sorry, more crappy cell phone pictures.

Team Murray boys was further joined by Vicky with Parker, Courtney with Olivia, Sara's Mom Angela (my new Mom) and her sister AnnaMarieUnfortnately we weren't able to get an entire group shot and considering how hot it was, there was no way that was happening after the fact.

Sorry for the heavy post, I'll try to keep up with this blog more often.  



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