Sunday, December 13, 2009

A Savior is Born!

My baby boy is six years old.  "A Savior is born" was his line in the Christmas play.  A more appropriate line has never been given to a child.  Matthew will proudly tell anyone who asks that he made his mom happy again.  It's funny that he was supposed to be named "Brian", but when he was born, the first words Brian said were, "He looks like a Matthew" to which I quickly agreed before even seeing him!  It wasn't until after I brought him home that I looked up the meaning of the name Matthew in  a baby name book.  Matthew:  Gift from God.  

I think I've blogged that story before, but I can't help myself.  I can still see myself in my room thumbing through the baby name book and feeling touched by God at that very moment.

So in addition to turning six, my little man lost his first tooth.  We knew it was coming.  He had been wiggling, and tugging, and twisting, and pushing on the poor tooth for a week.  Ms. Debra managed to pluck it out for him.  He was proud as could be!  He ran through the school to show off his new smile to the secretary, the custodian, the school nurse, a random parent in the hallway... and so on!  
Matthew chose to get money, (lots of it) instead of having a birthday party with friends.  He requested the money be all in ones so that he could have a big pile of it!  He says he is going to go shopping with me on "Black Friday", so he could get good deals.  He looked a little disappointed when I told him that was a year away.  (Not to mention that is when I do a lot of my Christmas shopping!) So he decided he is going to wait until AFTER Christmas to spend it.  Here's the happy birthday boy!Here are the top six things I love about Matthew!!

1.  His smile.
2. His giggle.
3. His snuggles.
4. His compassion.
5. His Faith.
6. His ability to charm almost anyone.  

Happy Birthday Little Man
I love you to the moon and back!

God is good.  All the time.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Happy Birthday Girls!!

Happy 4th Birthday my Loves!!!

Here is my Ruby, waiting for her birthday celebration at school.

Here is my Clara!!!
I spent the morning in Clara's preschool class this morning.  She was really excited to have me come to class with her.  The picture above is the face she made the whole time the class sang the happy birthday song.  Can you say black mail??  :)

The girls had their party at Build a Bear this weekend.  It was lots of fun, for the kids.  We had 14 altogether, which seems like a lot, but is really only 6 each.  Too bad Clara only wanted to invite Emery and Charlie!  Ruby had no problem filling the rest of the slots, and did a great job of picking kids both of the girls enjoy playing with.  Charlie is Noah's friend, and Clara claims she is going to marry him when she gets "big".  Charlie is a GREAT kid, and I do approve.  His mom brought him to the party for a minute!  I owe him big!  Clara was in awe.  :)

Here's a group shot of the kiddos at their party...

I've now officially survived four years of being a twin mom.  I've heard it gets easier once twins turn four.  Keep your fingers crossed for me!

God is good.  All the time.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Whoopie! It's Halloween!!!


Sorry, I just couldn't resist!  Here is my big ol' boy as a whoopie cushion.  Truth be told, he is a rather gassy child and didn't NEED the costume, but I've been told it's a boy thing!  We just got back from Trick or Treating in the neighborhood.  Brian and I passed out candy for a bit, then went together to take the kids out for goodies.  We got an unexpected treat ourselves... Ricky, Clara, Matthew, and Ruby all decided to spend the night at Grandma Janice's house!  So I guess I should say,  "WHOOPIE" again!

Here are pictures of the rest of the gang.  Clara was a "poodle girl".   The outfit couldn't have been any more perfect for her.  She loves it, especially the glasses!  I know it's hard to tell she loves it since she is not smiling, but the fact that she is wearing it speaks volumes.  Those of you that know Clara know what I mean!
Here's Ruby in all her Rah Rah glory... her teacher has even better pictures of her at school.  I need to remember to get copies of those.  In case you are wondering, Clara refused to wear her costume to school.  (Surprise!)Here is Matthew as his current favorite super hero.  A Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle!  He was crushed when a little old lady thought he was Franklin.  Poor kid!  We decided to Trick or Treat without the mask because he kept running into things in the house with it on, despite his protests that he could see, "just perfect".And this year, my worst nightmare came true.  My Ricky wanted to be Elvis.  I thought this was a GREAT idea, then he went to school, and came home one day and insisted on being this.Not really the image a mom wants to see when she thinks of her son.  Look at these blue eyes... do they really say psychopath?  I hope not!  Happy Halloween 2009 from our house to yours.
God is good.  All the time.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Happy Birthday in Heaven....

My baby would have been 7 today.  It's hard to believe that it has been so long since we lost her.  As I watch my other children grow up, I wonder what Briona would have been like.  Would she have been silly and carefree like Ruby, serious and stubborn like Clara, angelic like Matthew, driven like Ricky, or in their own world like Noah?  Would she dream of being a nurse like Alyssa?  Love dogs?  Be a daddy's girl?  Get lost in books?  Carry a blanket?  The questions that swirl in my mind at times like these are endless, and I find myself picking at a wound that people say time will heal.  Apparently seven years is not enough.  So I will place my trust in God, and rejoice in the knowledge that she is at peace, and with us always.  Loving Briona has forever shaped who I am today, and who I will be tomorrow.    

As a reminder to myself to remember how great an impact her short life had in ours, I am posting her eulogy that I wrote for her funeral.  I'll warn you, it's long, but I cannot think of a better place for it to be than in my blog tucked in with family memories where it belongs. 

My life has been blessed in so many ways.  I have a wonderful, loving husband.  Alyssa my honor roll student, Noah, my very imaginative five year old, and Ricky, a very active and luckily for him, very adorable baby.

Briona was our little surprise.  I knew from the beginning of my pregnancy that something was different.  I just had no idea of what really was to be in store for us.  Everyone would ask me as they found out I was pregnant again, "I bet you are hoping for a girl this time!" To which I could quite truthfully answer, "Not really, I just would like a healthy baby, and a boy would be much easier with them being so close in age."

We found out at 20 weeks gestation that Briona had Hypo Plastic Left Heart Syndrome, a very serious and very rare congenital heart disease.  We were worried, and scared, but determined to give our little girl every chance possible.

Briona was supposed to be a "straightforward" hypoplast.  Even before she was born, her surgeon predicted that she would be home within two to three weeks after her first surgery.  The day she was born, the doctors actually let me hold her for several minutes before taking her to the neonatal unit.  For her father and I it was love at first sight.  One look at her and we were hooked.  We both agreed that as long as she had fight left in her, we would do everything we could to help her win her battle.  There was a quality about her that had an affect on everyone who met her.  Her beautiful spirit shone through.  Her wonder at the world around her amazed people.  There's not really much for a baby to look at in a pediatric cardio thoracic unit, so Briona quickly became fascinated with her "bug butt" mobile.  Many days my hand got tired from winding it up over and over again, but to see her smile even with a breathing tube in made it all worth it.

One of Briona's doctors once said that Briona had more lives than a whole litter of kittens.  She endured three open heart surgeries in less than four weeks, and was on ECMO life support twice.  She had a fungus infection in her bladder, a bacterial infection in her blood, her lungs even collapsed once, but she bounced back every time.  Her will to live was amazing.  More than once we told that she probably wouldn't make it through the night, and until January 14th, she proved the doctors every time.  She would wake up in the morning, look up for her mobile, and wave her hands around until someone wound it up for her.  She loved to be touched, which can be unusual for a baby in the ICU.  We could stroke her beautiful, but untamed hair, and she would roll her eyes back and sigh as if to say, "That feels so good!"  She loved to suck on pink sponges and to be rocked on the few occasions that we were allowed to hold her.  She loved to hear her bedtime stories, Goodnight Moon, Mama Do You Love Me, and her daddy's favorite, Guess How Much I Love You.  She tolerated all of the silly hair dos that the nurses and I had so much fun creating.  She even let us play dress up one day.  I had such big hopes and dreams for her.  I miss her so much already.

On the morning of January 14th, I knew that Briona didn't have any fight left in her.  I looked at her poor little body, stroked her head, and whispered to her that it was okay to stop fighting.  I promised her that we would never forget her, and that we would love her forever.  I also told her to look out for her friends in the ICU, many of them as sick as she was.  Then I asked the doctors to let us hold her so that she could die with dignity in our arms.  She died snuggled between her father and I.  We knew that she was ready.

People always wonder WHY do things like this happen?  I've asked that question many times myself, and I don't really expect an answer.  All I do know is that Briona taught me more in 12 weeks than I had learned in a lifetime.  I saw miracles happen at the hospital every day.  I learned to appreciate my family more, and to take the time to thank God for even the little miracles that happen every day.  I received random acts of kindness from strangers, whether it was a hug,  a piece of candy, or even a basket of flowers from our veterinarian.  It's too bad that it takes a tragedy to bring out the best in people.  I know I will try much harder to appreciate life, and to live it to it's fullest.

If you learn anything from my daughter's short life, take away the fact that life is meant to be lived.  There is no promise of tomorrow for any of us.  Even though she never left the hospital, Briona live her life the best she could.  She truly made the best of her situation, and her family and the wonderful people who cared for her are all the better because of her.  Robert Frost wrote a poem that reads.. 
Nature's first green is gold
Her hardest hue to hold
Her early leaf's a flower
But only so an hour
Then leaf subsides to leaf
So Eden sank to grief
So dawn subsides to day
Nothing gold can stay.

Our daughter was golden.

Happy Birthday in Heaven my darling.

God is good.  All the time.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Marching in the Rain...

Ruby has joined the Twirlettes.  She takes her twirling very seriously.  She has had two lessons now.  She thinks she is ready for the twirling olympics!  This Friday was very rainy.  (I should know, I took my class to the apple orchard!)  The rain was NOT letting up.  Ruby however was dressed and ready to go to her first parade.  I personally was hoping it would be cancelled (I know... bad mom, but I had to march in the rain too!!)

Ruby is the smallest Twirlette, but perhaps has the biggest heart!  That little girl of mine marched her heart out, in the POURING rain, and grinned the whole time!  The little ones just linked batons and marched, the big girls were doing a routine up front.  Every time they tossed their batons into the air and caught them Ruby would exclaim, "MOM!  Did you see that?  That is sooooo AWESOME!  I am gonna do that when I get big!"

After the parade, the director complimented Ruby on her "toughness", and told her she was very proud.  Mom was very proud too.  Even Brian has to admit that perhaps Ruby has found her "thing" already.  She sleeps with her baton!  

Today Ruby woke up and asked, "Mom, when are we going to the parade?"  She was ready for another one!  When anyone asks her how the parade went, she says, "It was good, but my hair was sooooo soaked!"  

We'll have to see how she feels about marching in the snow in December!  I'll be sure to keep you posted.

God is good.  All the time.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Light At the End of the Tunnel....

Nope, I am not dying... but thanks to my handy dandy sitter and friend, (or should I say friend and sitter?) I have these images to share...                                                      

My babies are going to school!!!  Clara and Ruby are now in preschool.  Ruby LOVES it... Clara is a little unsure about things.  She is fine once she gets there (minus the hour long temper tantrum on her second day) but thus far, school is not her favorite place.  Clara does not like changes.  In the last two weeks she's had to adjust to Daddy working, daycare, school buses, kids on the playground...more buses, and more daycare.  On the upside, she has invited her teacher to her birthday party, so perhaps a change is coming.  

In fact,  just today she told me today she is not going to cry on "that other day" when she goes back to school.  (Monday)  I actually think she is hitting me up for more Build a Bear clothes for her bears, but if they will stop the morning tantrums, it will be money well spent!  

Matthew, is LOVING kindergarten.  He is in the Montessori program at our school and is really excited about the animals, the hands on activities, and his teachers.  He also still gives me kisses in the hallway when he sees me.  But not without a quick glance at his teacher to make sure she's not going to catch him out of line!  I know I have to savor these stolen kisses, as soon he will be too big, and too cool to kiss his mommy in public.  He still looks so tiny.  I am hoping that he outgrows some clothes this year, or the endocrinologists figure out what is going on.  Here's my handsome man on his first day...
Here are my "Man boys" who are now too cool to look excited for school, Noah is in 7th grade this year.  This picture pretty much sums up his excitement.  He pretty much leaps out of the minivan prior to it coming to a complete stop in the morning lest I say something embarrassing like "Love you bubby" for his friends to overhear!  
Ricky was apprehensive about starting school.  His best friend is in a different 3rd grade class, and his other best friend is now going to a private school.  Despite his worries, he Dylan told Dylan's dad that they did not need him to walk them to school on the first day, because they were "MEN"!
He is now on a mission to earn lunch with his teacher.  To do this he has to keep his name on the "golden board" all marking period.  Something tells me he will do it!  

Brian and I are adjusting to the new schedule.  He is out of the house by 6:00 most mornings, and seems really excited by the prospect of learning all the tricks of the pipe fitting trade.  My class is off to a good start.  They seem super sweet, and well behaved!  I feel very lucky!   I spent a good part of today in my classroom, looking for my dongle, which I seem to have misplaced.  (Dang it!)  Guess I'll have to go to the mall.......

God is good.  All the time.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Because a promise is a promise....

I am updating my blog. But only so that you will no longer have to read about my gang sign flashing kindergartner. In the craziness that only a kindergarten teacher would understand, I managed to leave my charger at school for my laptop. I guess we are supposed to have two, so maybe I left BOTH of them at school... (problem being I have no idea where one of them may be...) I could not edit or upload my pictures, play on Facebook, or browse wistfully on the Gymboree website. I couldn't even list Matthew's motorcycle power wheels on Craigs List! (He said we could sell it if he could get a Build a Bear Wolf, and a Batman costume for it to wear...)

What did I do before that laptop??

I am updating now from the dinosaur we call a desktop. It is old, and slow, and annoying...

Problem is, I PROMISED a friend I would update my blog this weekend, and a promise is a promise, so consider this blog updated!

Will post more with pictures and fun later this week! (Maybe....)

God is good. All the time.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Boyers Visit a Dairy Farm... or, Why is Matthew Flashing Gang Signs?

So today we went to a dairy farm.  A centennial farm.  If you look closely, you will see Matthew is throwing gang signs underneath the historical sign.  I did not notice this when I snapped the picture.  I should have.  I think it was a warning from above.  My kids are CITY kids.  In case you don't believe it, here is the proof...

My children quickly found their favorite farm animal...

They were satisfied with this and were ready to go home and eat.  However Meems had other plans in store!  Like chasing chickens!  People say chickens are dumb.  These chickens are hiding from Ricky...(look close they are under the bush) seems pretty smart to me!  

Here is Clara getting kissed by a cow.  She likes it! 

Don't forget the bunny petting! 
We also saw quail, sheep, big cows, giant tractors, ducks, turkeys, and cows pooping (Ricky's favorite part aside from the smell), and giant sunflower fields,

Where Matthew felt compelled to flash more gang signs.  

Back to the city tomorrow.

God is good.  All the time.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Toad Lessons

We are "up north" as my kids would say, visiting my bff Meems and her gang.  They were at our house last week, just in time to get exposed to pertussis.  Thankfully their mommy called the doctor and got them on preventative antibiotics and the only coughing here is from my kiddos.  Have I mentioned that the coughing symptoms can last THREE MONTHS??   But I digress.  

The picture above is "Baby" holding a toad she found in the yard.  My kids were impressed with her boldness and all wanted to hold the toad.  Problem being... they all looked like this...

In case you don't speak Clara facial expressionesse she is saying "Are you kidding me?  I am not touching that thing!!"  They all tried and tried, and the poor toad got dropped and dropped.  My kids could NOT keep from flinching every time they touched the toad.  Finally Noah stepped forward and said, "I want to hold it."  Now those of you that know Noah, know that he is not known for his bravery or willingness to try new things!  He kept saying, "Wait, wait, I gotta get my mind set."  Then what do you know....Noah!  Holding a toad!  It seems like a very strange proud mommy moment, but it was one!  I proclaimed him the toad holding winner of the city mice!  Of course then Matthew wanted to try again....Poor Ricky just couldn't bring himself to hold the toad without a napkin.  I told him I was NOT getting him a napkin!  So he looked like this..
We have a few more days here... maybe "Baby" can teach him some toad holding tricks yet.

God is good.  All the time.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

What are the odds.....

We have pertussis in our house.  Nope, I am not kidding.  Even my pediatrician said "Only you, Krista" and I have to agree.  What are the odds of contracting a disease that is supposed to be for the most part obliterated by vaccines? To add insult to injury, what are the odds that only one of my five immunized children had any protection from it (at least so far...).  Needless to say, we are ALL taking antibiotics and in 24 hours we will no longer be contagious.  I am looking forward to that.  

In the mean time, we have had friends from out of town over (sorry Meems!), went to Build a Bear in the Mall, Chuck E . Cheese, Olgas Kitchen, and many many Midwest Sliders games, and oh yeah, I donated blood for the first time.  I hope they check blood for pertussis.  (?!) I donated over two weeks ago, so I am hoping that I didn't unknowingly pass along an illness to someone who was already ill.  Good grief.  The guilt would kill me.

School is starting soon.  We are going to visit a dear friend (who I may or may not have infected with pertussis) this weekend, and are looking forward to the Heritage Festival one of Ricky's all time favorite ways to spend money.  We missed it last year because we were in Disney World.  He is still a little bitter about that.  He is a weird weird kid!  I'll have to post about his birthday when I am not coughing all over the place....

I guess it could be worse, but looking at the odds of so many of us getting pertussis in the first place, I think I am going to start playing the lotto.  My luck has got to change in my favor one of these days!

God is good.  All the time.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Wonder Years....

It's a rather odd habit I have, but sometimes as I watch things unfold in the lives of my children I hear the beginning line of a story being told in my head.  Like the man voice in the wonder years.  So here are a few pics that the voice in my head has been begging me to share...

 " It seemed like a strange welcome to our family, but then I remembered that Hell had great ice cream."

"I frantically rehearsed the lines in my head, what if I forgot the words?  In front of all those people? And then she appeared, and her smile sent a sense of calm through my five year old body"

"I knew my mom would comment about my handwriting so I quickly grabbed my solar oven and stood in front of the display, hoping to divert her attention"

"I would never have thought that splashing on the banks of Hell Creek would feel a little bit like Heaven"

"I always knew I was going to be a dancer.  I just had to figure out how to get to people to notice me"

"I loved being in the dug out with the players.  Listening to the coaches yell, the players swear, and the crowd cheer.  When I scooped up the bat, I liked to imagine they were cheering for me."

Summer as all good things do, is passing by much too quickly.

God is good.  All the time.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

You Can't Really Dress a Guinea Pig

Clara is an animal lover.  She especially likes dogs.  Small dogs.  Specifically chihuahuas.  She wants one.  BAD.  She obsesses over what she will do with her little white chihuahua when she gets it.  It will be a girl, and she will name her Chloe.  (Sound familiar?  Blame Disney and Beverly Hills Chihuahua her favorite movie...)  When she gets her chihuahua she will carry it in her purse or her princess backpack, and she will paint its fingernails and its toenails pink, and it will wear pink clothes and shoes, and be "so cute".  After she gets her little white dog she is going to let her dad get a big black and brown dog and "he can name he Delgado and him will be Chloe's best friend".  If you ask her why she wants a chihuahua she will tell you because they are "small but mighty".    In her head it is all perfectly planned out.  

Problem is, she will likely never get a chihuahua.  They really are not kid friendly dogs.  In addition, Brian seems to think he has to trade in his penis if he ever gets a dog small enough to carry in a purse.  Most rescues will not adopt chihuahuas to families with small children (we've got lots of those) and I don't really want to risk divorce by buying a dog for my daughter from an ad in the paper.  Brian wants a big dog when we get another dog.  So, I don't think my little one will get her little dog anytime soon.  I've told her this time and time again, but she remains certain that she will have one someday.  I guess it's good to think positive.

Tonight the family went to see G-Force, a movie about secret agent Guinea Pigs.  (Again, thanks Disney!) The kids all want a guinea pig now, Matthew has wanted one before, and the movie has just fanned the flames all over again.  As Ruby was plotting and planning all the things she would do and say to her new pet guinea pig, I reminded her that guinea pigs don't really talk.   Clara calmly chimed in,  "Yea, and you can't really dress a guinea pig, but you can dress a chihuahua!"

God is good.  All the time.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

These Kids Belong in a Zoo...

Sometimes things in my life are going fairly smoothly, so I get goofy and decide to do things like take my kids to the zoo!  Today I met up with a childhood friend at the Toledo Zoo.  I'd been telling the kids we would go all summer, and much to my dismay summer is slipping quickly by!    

All went well except for when I very briefly lost Clara.  Well I didn't actually lose her, it was more that she ran away because she didn't like the aquarium exhibit.   Between the dark aquarium, and the damn bird aviary I was really freaked out.  Luckily as I was growing frantic and screaming "CLARA!!  ANSWER MOMMY!!" a woman said "Is she a little blond girl in a dress?  I think she just ran out the exit."  I of course raced out the exit, and there she was standing there calm as could be.  When I asked her WHY she would run out of the aquarium, she calmly said "I didn't like the dark."    Oh.  Well Clara Jean, Mommy doesn't like to have heart attacks either!!!
Speaking of heart attacks... notice Ruby the camera hog is NOT in this picture?  Perhaps you are wondering why?  Well Ruby was standing on a ledge happily watching the polar bears in the exhibit.  Suddenly a polar bear came out of nowhere and leaped out of the water and up onto the glass.  Poor Ruby was so scared she couldn't even scream.  She just raced back to the wagon and for the most part stayed put the rest of the trip!  (Very unusual for Ruby! She is usually the one up to something!)  Good thing I guess.  I don't think I could handle two heart attacks in one day!  

Here is my Ruby with my friend's son Max.  We had to take the picture.... It's Max and Ruby!  
All in all a a very nice day...heart attacks and all.

God is good.  All the time.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Lessons Learned....

So today was not the best day ever.  I took the girls to the dentist and found out they need a LOT of work done.  I mean... A LOT!  I am thinking of just having all their teeth pulled and getting them teeny tiny dentures.  I am pretty sure that it would be a lot cheaper.  

Story # 1

I tried to take them to the dentist earlier but was told they were too young... I tried to go to an in network dentist to save a few bucks...  lessons learned??  1) Going to the dentist is expensive.  It doesn't matter where you go.   2) Nurse Helene is a valuable resource when you need to find ways to get things done and 3) If I invent mini dentures for kids with "weak enamel" like mine have I could save a lot of folks a lot of money... and get rich all at the same time.  Oh yes... 4) My dental insurance blows monkey butts....

Story #2

The kids want a dog.  They keep telling me this.  I tell them talk to their father as he is the one who is prohibiting the dog getting!  He wants a big dog (WHEN he decides we can have one) and the kids want a little dog.  In the car tonight they were asking "why don't we have a dog" "why don't we have a dog" "how come dad gets to be the boss" "we want to get a little dog" "we want to name the dog Delgado" blah blah blah.  I finally told them that they were talking to the wrong person.  If it were up to me I would have a dog (or two) but it's not!  So Matthew asked"Why IS dad the boss?" to which I had no real answer.  I will have to ponder this more... perhaps in therapy.  The kids came up with a great idea though for changing his mind.  Ruby piped up "We should whip he" Clara said "Yea, then you should say Who's the Boss Now Daddy and whip he some more" and Matthew said "And when he gives up and says okay you are the boss, you can go get a dog mommy!"  It creates a rather amusing mental picture doesn't it?  Lessons learned??  1) Therapy is good... 2) My kids may need therapy in the future...

Story #3

I am a self defined vacation bible school whore.  I will send my kids to any vacation bible school willing to take them for free, the ones that come and get them are even better.  Needless to say, the kids are going to bible school this week, and so far have loved it.  Clara didn't want to go tonight because she was "too tired".  Matthew told her she needed to go so that she could learn about God.  (Go Matthew!!)  Clara calmly replied that she already knows about God, so she was going to stay home with her Stinky Corner (blanket).  I asked Clara, "What do you know about God?" Her answer?  "God made us.  God watches us.  And God doesn't want us to be scared."  I was very impressed!  I made her go to bible school anyhow.  :)
Lessons learned:  1) Free bible school rocks!  2) Kids say it best.  

Hoping for a better tomorrow....

God is good.  All the time.  

Friday, July 10, 2009

Take me out to the Ball Game....

The boys have a new favorite pastime.  Surprise!  It's baseball.  However, it is not playing baseball, but watching baseball.  Our little old town is hosting the Midwest Sliders, a frontier league team for the summer.  Noah and Ricky went to a baseball clinic they hosted and were given free tickets, and so the addiction began!  We've spent the last three nights at the ballpark. Ricky enjoys collecting foul balls and autographs, as does Matthew.  The players are great with the kids.  It must be pretty cool to have so many little kids look up to you!  

 The boys have really enjoyed watching the games, and tonight Ricky and Noah got to serve as batboys.  Here's a shot of my handsome little devils.  They were so excited to be in the dugout with the players.  
 It was a great way to spend the evening.  Ricky even brought home a broken bat.  You would have thought he won the lotto

 On a side note, I even got to get into the fun and play Let's Make a Deal after the 4th inning.  I won a pack of 12 undated tickets to upcoming games.  Guess what we'll be doing the rest of the summer!  

God is good. All the time.