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Friday, August 29, 2008


Today is the 29th of August. Two days away from the 31st, and it feels like a countdown to an event I can't stop from happening. I have to be honest and say I never really understood why the anniversary of someone's death was a big deal to those they left behind. Especially after a year or so... I mean, are you not 'used' to the fact that they're gone? Get on with your life already and stop moping, feeling sorry for yourself, wallowing in old sorrow. Then, it happened to me. I lost Grandma, and my perspective on life was altered forever. On August 31st, two days from now, Grandma will have been gone for three years. It doesn't seem possible, yet I know it's true. I haven't talked to her in three years. I haven't seen her face in three years. And since then, every time August has come around, beginning with August 1, the entire month feels like a countdown. I tried to describe it to Matt, and the only way I knew how was to say, it's sort of like, she's not gone yet, but the day I know she's leaving is ticking closer and closer, and I can't do anything to stop it. That is completely irrational, and yes, I know she's gone, but that date... August 31st... it's just hard. I know she's in heaven. I know she's beautiful and happy... so happy, but August 31st still sucks for us down here.

I pulled out her Bible this month. She came to Belle and Estella Dru's baby dedication at church (FBCS) in November, 9 months before she died. It was the day they handed out the Holman Christian Standard Bibles. She got one of the old people, big font versions, and she was so excited about it. Inside I found the baby dedication program with Belle and Dru's pictures. (They were so little, 18 months and 3 months.) She was also excited about following the one-year reading plan and followed it every single day. She had never read completely through the Bible before and complained profusely about Leviticus. (Don't we all...) I found her reading guide today and saw she had marked through every day, missing none. Her last mark was made next to August 29. Today. August 29. (She got sick that night, and the ambulance came the morning of the 30th.)

We are going home this weekend to be with Grandpa. It's a hard day for him, too. Plus his birthday is on Sept 3rd--the day we buried her. (Talk about something that sucks.) He'll be 86. I plan on taking the girls to get flowers and letting them put them on her grave. Belle still tells me she misses her, and Drusy wants to remember her so bad. I think a lot about what she'd think of Jeb. She would adore him. I can just see her holding him. And I think she would think I'm a good mom. Sometimes I think those are the words I want to hear the most from her. "You're doing good, Honey." Although, I'd settle for "Hi."

I just miss her.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Johnny Jump Up Malfunction

Jeb loves his Johnny Jump Up. So, today, when he began crying after only a few minutes of high-intensity jumping, I didn't even look up from what I was doing. Instead, I called around the corner (I couldn't see him from where I was...), "You're ok, Buddy. Keep jumping." But the cries grew louder and more frustrated. Finally, I went to check on him only to discover that his JJU had malfunctioned, and he was soaring through the air like Superbaby, periodically banging his head into the doorframe. Mom of the year, right here.

Yes, instead of rescuing him immediately, I ran for the camera. Some moments must be captured. (Pay no attention to the Organic Spring Vegetables and Rice baby food smeared all over his outfit.)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Yea, Golf Team!

Matt's golf team won their tournament tonight against Gentry, Gravette, Berryville, and Pea Ridge. One of his guys won 1st, and two others tied for 2nd. Yea, Golf Team!

Matt is already preparing Jeb to be the next Shiloh golf standout. He says he's going to be his "Daddy Caddy." Jeb does look pretty darn cute in a Shiloh golf hat.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Mystery Solved

Our 'buggy' mystery has been solved. (Thanks Cousin Denise and Mom.) Last Friday's house invader is called a house centipede. Specifically,

Order: Scutigeromorpha
Family: Scutigeridae
Genus and Species: Scutigera coleoptrata (Linnaeus)

And according to the University of Arkansas's Department of Entemology/Arthropod Museum webpage, (I'll highlight the good parts...)

"The house centipede is often seen darting across floors at high speed, occasionally stopping suddenly and remaining motionless for some time before racing off once more. Its cylindrical body can grow to an inch or more in length. It is yellowish brown and bears three dark longitudinal stripes dorsally. The 15 pairs of slender, banded legs increase in length from the front to the back of the body. The last pair is much longer than the others. The legs give the animal the appearance of great size. Unlike most other centipedes, house centipedes and their close relatives have well-developed, faceted eyes." ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!!!


"In captivity, (What the heck does "in captivity" mean? As opposed to "in the wild"?) house centipedes feed readily on cockroach nymphs, flies, moths, bedbugs, crickets, silverfish, earwigs, and other insects and small spiders. They capture prey by half pouncing and half lassoing them. They can capture several prey items at one time. They feed on one specimen while holding the others with their quivering, lashing appendages (Lewis 1981)." AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!


"Although house centipedes are not aggressive, and their jaws are not powerful enough to break human skin easily, they will sometimes bite in self-defense. Severe swelling and pain can result from the venom injected, but in most cases the bite is no worse than the sting of a bee."

Wikipedia adds, "The house centipede('s)... long, delicate legs and a rigid body... enable it to run with surprising speed... up walls and along ceilings and floors."

Needless to say, I am a walking, bug-killing arsenal. I see "well-developed, faceted eyes" everywhere. What the heck does "faceted" mean!!?? No... don't tell me. Do not tell me.

This is a zoomed in shot. Check the eye out for yourself.

Friday, August 22, 2008

What..... in the heck.... is this?

If you know me at all, you know I have an aversion to creepy, crawly things. Ok, 'aversion' may be too light of a word--I'm horrified. I will admit to having a frog-phobia, as well as panic attacks if anything 'buggy' comes near me. I don't know when I became this way. I was raised on a farm. I vividly remember being excited about smashing potato bugs (don't know their real name) between two rocks with Grandma in the garden. I used to collect the little black chicken house bugs (don't know their real name) until Grandpa would tell me to stop. I would dig up worms and chase down grasshoppers for fish bait and had no problem sliding a hook into their little bodies. (I'm near fainting just thinking about it.) And if by chance, the fish swallowed the hook, I wouldn't hesitate slicing the poor thing open to get my hook out. (Ah! The horror.) So, what happened to me? When did I morph into this ultra-squeamish, anti-creepy crawly GIRL who makes my five year old kill spiders and chase away frogs because I simply cannot do it? It's sad. Very sad.

Ok, so there's a little background for you. Now, let me tell you about the event that occurred this morning. I casually walked into my kitchen, completely unaware that I was being watched. I cleaned off my counter then unassumingly looked up to the ceiling, and there it was... a hideous creature with 498 legs just hanging there... waiting to make his move and drag me back to his lair. Brace yourselves.

AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!! What in the heck is that thing? What did I do, you may ask. Seriously... you have to ask? I contemplated dialing 9-1-1. It IS the emergency number. But then decided to call Matt. He came home and couldn't believe how scary this thing looked. It tried to grab him, but Matt's cat-like reflexes gave him the advantage. (He IS the Shiloh golf coach, remember?) The battle was fierce, but Matt prevailed. Way to go, Husband. All is peaceful once again. Here's a picture of 'Stella after the killing was over. I think she's been traumatized. (She's frozen this way, by the way... eyes glazed over. It's very sad.)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Stealing a Kiss

So, Jeb is giving kisses now. You know.. the open mouth full of slobber kind that only a mother enjoys. But here's the thing... he doesn't do it when anyone is around. As you can imagine, this leaves me looking completely delusional when I tell people that he does it... then look at him and say, "kiss", and he looks at me like, "What in the world are you talking about, Lady? I've never kissed anyone in my life." Don't you just hate it when your children don't perform when they have an audience?

But for all you naysayers, I PROMISE HE GIVES KISSES! He just doesn't do it on cue.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Let there be fence

With all the milestones this week in the Slaughter house, I forgot to give my husband props for finishing the fence (with Pat and G-Pops' help). Way to go guys. It looks great... and so functional for sending loud kids outdoors. (I realize you can't actually see the fence in the first picture, but I don't think I ever posted a picture of the house after we moved in.)

Drusy's Big Day

Today is Estella Dru's first day of school. She has been waiting for this day since Belle started k-4 last year and was so excited to leave in Daddy's Barbie truck today. I was so happy for her. The skill we had to master was writing her whole name for school. She was really good at Dru , but I wanted her to write Estella Dru. She can do it well if I'm speaking the letters over her, and she does ok if she does it alone... just leaves a letter out or puts one somewhere random on the page. I'm so proud of my girls. It's just me and Jeb and his two new teeth today. Sigh.

(By the way... those backpacks are specified on their school supply list. I wouldn't voluntarily get my kids backpacks bigger than they are!)

Monday, August 18, 2008

Can't forget Jeb

Yet another milestone was reached in our house today. I can't forget Baby Jeb who turned 6 months old today. Despite his two new teeth, he's the most easy-going little guy I know. Those teeth may come in handy later, but right now, I'm REALLY holding a grudge.

Belle's First Day of School

Today is Belle's first day of school. I can't believe I have a child in kindergarten. She was so excited to go this morning, and no I didn't take her. She LOVES to ride to school with her daddy in his 'Barbie' truck. (aka $500 hooptie) She had to master the skill of tying her shoes before today and finally got it down Saturday night. She is SO proud of herself and wanted to take a shoe to church to show everyone what she can do. (The first picture is of the first bow she tied all by herself.) This year she also has to learn to tuck in her shirt all by herself... we're still working on that one. Estella starts K-4 tomorrow and will go Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. So tomorrow will be a big day, too.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A tooth, almost crawling, and golf

Two blog posts in one night. I know... it's a lot, but the Addis homecoming post was requested by a couple people who couldn't make it to the airport, and I also have some Slaughterhouse news. Three items actually. 1.) Jeb's first tooth is peeking through. (Ahhh, teething. How soon we forget the horrors.) I tried to get a picture but was brutally unsuccessful. 2.) The little guy is 'trying' to crawl... not so easy on hardwood floors. 3.) Drumroll, please....... Matt Slaughter (if you haven't heard) is the new men's head golf coach at Shiloh. Yep, more time on the course for him, and more time for me home alone with three kids. I'm so happy for him. No, seriously... Matt's a great golfer and an even better communicator. They couldn't have done any better. Go golf team! (Do you cheer for golf?)

Almost there....

Addis is home.

They're home. Zach and Erin came home to NW Arkansas today after spending over a week in Ethiopia. But they didn't come home empty handed! Addis is one of the cutest little guys I've ever seen. And yes, I'm partial, but take a look for yourself...

They had quite a crowd to greet them, including family and a ton of friends who have been praying for this day for a long time. We are so privileged to be a part of this celebration. The bottom of the escalator at XNA was most definitely the equivilant to a delivery waiting room today. So much fun.

The waiting crowd....

The kids were so excited. Here's Belle, Dru, and Brooke.

Avery and Finley made a sign for Addis.

Parker and Jeb wondering what all the fuss was about.

Easton waiting for his little brother with both grandpas.

Then they were there.

And the paparazzi swarmed...

He immediately LOVED Catherine.

He literally attacked Catherine with kisses. Hilarious.

Jeb's first meeting with his friend. (Not a good picture but the camera battery died.)

Monday, August 11, 2008

Jeb and his sneaky sisters

I just heard the girls whispering in their bedroom which wouldn't normally bother me too much. This time, though, I was a bit concerned because I had just laid Jeb in their floor to let him watch Barney with his sisters. The whispering was quickly followed by uncontrollable laughter... which prompted to me run as fast as I could in there and see what they were doing to my poor baby boy. This is what I found. They had "sneaked around" and "wrapped him up like a girl baby" (their words) and thought they were pretty funny. I was relieved that was all they had done. And Jeb... he was oblivious to his girliness and was just happy with the extra attention.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Fence, Family, and Flood

Matt is building our new fence this weekend. I knew it would be quite a job, but wow.... His Uncle Jonathan helped him get the big piece of equipment you see in the pictures . Without that, I can't imagine how Matt could do it. Also, our brother in law, Pat, and G-Pops have been helping. They've made some nice progress, and probably could have gotten a little further along if not for the crazy flood this afternoon--ok, not actually a flood, but it was a lot of rain. Can't wait to show you the finished product. Also can't wait to actually have the finished product so I can send my kids outside!!

Drusy was 'supervising' with her new American Girl doll. We tried to throw this horse out in the move but got busted when the girls saw it in the trash heap. It's name is Penso... should be "Pinto" but the girls think Dora's horse is named Penso, and I can't convince them they're hearing it wrong. I tried explaining it again this afternoon to which Dru replied, "Mom--- You don't even know. His name is Calypso." I guess this is a change since yesterday.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Big Brave Girl

Belle was so brave today. We had a visit this morning with Dr. Brent for a check up and four shots before starting kindergarten. She didn't even shed a tear.. just pouted a little when it was all over. I think it hurt me more than it hurt her. I was so proud of her. Afterwards, we went to Toys R Us, and she picked out a toy...a Littlest Pet Shop, of course, her toy of choice lately. She definitely gets her bravery from her Mommy. (Stop laughing.)

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


Poor Baby Jeb has been overlooked in blog posts recently. He's just the easiest little guy... so happy and easygoing. He is such a little sweetheart. I just went into his room where he was waking from a nap and got these shots. As soon as he sees me after a nap, his little face just lights up. I love my boy baby.

This is the view I had when I got to his crib.

What do you think, Mr. Josh? Future Shiloh qb? (I hear you recruit.... We're waiting.)

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Sweet 'Stella's Birthday

My baby girl turned 4 today. I can't believe in a few short weeks she'll be starting k-4. It's crazy how time gets away from us. We had a little family party tonight with grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. Drusy had a ball and felt like a princess.

This morning, Daddy left his little girl flowers, candy, and a musical card. She was in heaven.

The cake was, of course, courtesy of Rick's Bakery. We just 'spruced' it up a bit.

Happy Birthday, Estella Dru. We sure love you.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Can you even stand it?

Have you ever seen anything so precious? Bring that baby home already! (Read about Zach and Erin's adoption journey HERE. And say a prayer while you're at it for a safe journey home.)

Friday, August 1, 2008

Cold Busted

I left Jeb alone in the girls' room for maybe 30 seconds today, and when I came back in THIS is what I found. Already mackin' on the chicks....