The Dixon Blog.

22 Nov

On June 12, 2008, I joined this blogging world. I have to say, I’ve absolutely loved having this blog. It has been beneficial in so many ways and sometimes even therapeutic for me. It has been a method of scrap booking for our kids without being crafty (because I’m not), journaling my random thoughts, keeping track of recipes, sharing about our running & races, and allowing others to share in our life experiences right along with us.

Ryan started a blog about a year ago as well. Just recently, we determined that it would make complete sense to combine our blogs since the same people that read my blog most likely read his blog too. And, a lot of the time, we have the same updates or experiences to share. So, after much work…compiling, designing, coding, etc (all done by Ryan I should add), we are please to announce OUR new blog…

thedixonblog.com

So update your blog roll, bookmarks, etc. From this point on, all new posts will be on the new site! Thanks for being a part of our crazy lives.

Addi & Kam Updates

17 Nov

Our two precious punkins are just developing, learning, and growing up so fast…it feels like if I blink too fast, they will be teenagers way  too soon!

Addi is four going on thirty. She talks non-stop. I mean like all the time. Seriously. She is so curious and is going through the “why?” phase. She needs explanation on just about everything. You can tell her brain is going 90 to nothing and she is soaking up so much right now. Quite the little thinker that one. She’s also very sweet and tender-hearted. She plays well with her friends, it’s neat to watch how considerate she is. Playing with her sister? Well, that’s a different story. Her & Kam fight pretty much every day several times a day. But that’s normal, right? Addi got her first “report card” at school last week and is doing very well…”proficient” in almost every category. Smarty pants! She’s almost half way through her year of preschool. I tear up just thinking about her going to that big, ginormous building of a place called Kindergarden next year! Don’t know if this momma is ready for all that.

Kamryn is not even 3 yet, which we often forget. She is just a little bit shorter than Addi, but already has surpassed her in shoe size. No doubt, she will be tall like her Daddy. She has quite the personality. Very funny and independent. And brave! When we go play at playgrounds, she heads straight to the tallest, largest slide! She likes to wear the same purple dress-up dress every day and always asks to dance with Daddy. Her favorite word is “because” and she tries to use it in every sentence she says. She is fully potty trained now…well, sort of. She still wears a pull-up at night and we are working hard at trying to eliminate that altogether. She loves chewing gum – it has become a good form of bribery for us. She is still very shy when she meets someone new and it takes a while for her to warm up to them.

It has been such a joy to be home with them and having more time with them. I am LOVING it. I thank God everyday for the blessing of my new job. I’ll leave you with a few pics from the last several weeks.

Fun fact for you: there are a total of 11,351 pics in my iPhoto library. WHOA NELLY FURTADO (as Addi would say)!

Blowing bubbles is one of their favorite things to do outside. Look how serious they are about it.

Any opportunity they have to dance, they dance. And will put on a highly entertaining show!

I love it when they are sweet to each other. But don't let them fool you, they are usually fighting!

New pajamas & slippers from Grandma.

They made me stop and take their pic...just so they could make silly faces! Kam creepily resembles Jack Nicholson.

Think these 2 belong to him?

I am blessed to be their mommy.

With friends, Emma & Hannah at the library. We try & go every Wednesday to Storytime.

We spend a lot of time at the trails. The girls are becoming quite the little runners!

Happy Fall everyone!

Some recent faves.

16 Nov

A while back, I posted about a few of my faves. Time for round #2!

1. Life is Good Snuggle Socks. Soft, warm, thick & cozy. My Aunt Debbie bought these for me at the Life is Good store in Boston and I heart them. I have pretty much worn them every night for the last two weeks. So comfy!

2. Keurig Coffee Machine. A friend of ours has a business where he provides companies with a commercial version of this machine and then supplies their coffee pods to them on a regular basis. Clever huh? He has asked us to help him with some marketing ideas and ways to make more sales and in return bought us a machine so we could try out all the coffee…bonus! It has been awesome to have a fresh, hot cup of coffee on these cool Fall days whenever we want without having to brew a whole pot. Plus, the coffee is really, very good!

3. Chocolate Milk. I’ve always read that drinking chocolate milk post-run helps aid the body in muscle recovery. So, a couple of months ago we decided to give this a try after our long runs. Do you know how good a tall, cold glass of chocolatey goodness taste after running? Surprisingly, its awesome and has honestly helped me a ton. I used to have stomach issues after running anything past 8 miles (I will spare you the details). But since I’ve started downing some good ole creamy chocolate milk…no more tummy probs! Now, I crave it near the end of a run. I’ve officially added it to the list of my running “must-haves.”

4. Andy’s Pumpkin Pie Concrete. Imagine some delicious vanilla custard. Now picture a whole piece of tasty pumpkin pie. Ok, are you ready for this? Imagine someone putting the piece of pie, yes the whole piece, into the custard and mixing it up and handing it to you with a spoon and a smile. That’s the way Andy’s does it and oh my word. Its ridiculous. And sadly seasonal, so we plan to go there often over the next few weeks!

All aboard!

15 Nov

This Fall has been jam packed! We’ve had so much going on with races, trips, events, work, etc…it has been insane. Good, but busy. So hard to believe that next week is already Thanksgiving…what happened? Where did 2010 go?

We have two more races on the agenda for the year. The Turkey Trot in Dallas on Thanksgiving morning, which is 8 miles. Then the 3rd of our 3 Fall half marathons, White Rock in Dallas on the first Sunday in December. We have several friends who are doing this race too, some of them registered for the full marathon! Gonna be a fun one, for sure.

But with everything bustling around us, there is a thought that keeps going through my mind and is usually accompanied with a reggae tune and the scent of coconut…

In t-minus 11 days, we will be boarding on OUR CRUISE and heading to the Caribbean for 5 whole nights! YES!!!

Story time.

11 Nov

On the flight home from Boston, I finished the book A Millions Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller. It was GREAT, I loved it. The book is simply a collection of stories in Donald’s life. He is a writer and realizes through the course of turning one of his books into a movie, that he had spent a big majority of his life writing stories – but not actually living them which made him incredibly sad and feel empty. So, he decides to get off the couch, turn the TV off, and start making his own stories – start experiencing life for himself. Stop taking the easy road and creating moments that matter. He ends up with some awesome, very inspirational stories to share. The book is eye-opening on many levels.

For me, it challenged me to really live in the moment. In one section of the book, he talks about how he and some friends were driving down a road as the sun was setting on some open fields. One of the girls said she loved running across fields like that when she was a child. He pulled the car over and they all got out and high-tailed it, running into the sunset. Such a beautiful picture of experiencing life and taking time to fully engage in the moments God gives us.

Yesterday, the girls and I had to drive out to the lake to take care of a few work-related things at Brown’s Landing. On the drive home, Kamryn rolled her window down a smidge on accident when her foot hit the button. I instantly rolled it up and turned on the child safety locks, without even thinking. I caught myself…this is an opportunity. I quickly pushed the safetly lock off, rolled down not only Kam’s window but all four windows in the car. It was then I noticed how beautiful the day was! The laughter that came from the backseat was like music to my ears. The girls loved how their hair flew crazily around them and they smiled and giggled the rest of the way home. We created a story. A small, short, but sweet little story and I loved it.

When I come to the end of life, I want my life to be overflowing with stories. As a child of God, I desire to have stories of how He worked in my life and used me in ways that only He could make possible. As a spouse, I want to have adventures to share about living life with my love. As a mom, I want to have “memory makers” galore with my children. The ups and downs of life can all be part of a story. Even the hard, sad, or difficult times can create a good story, if you let them. After all, God is the author. And He is perfect. You just have to submit and embrace each moment He gives you!

A very special weekend.

10 Nov

This past weekend’s trip up north was awesome. From laughing hysterically to sharing memories to finishing 13.1 in honor of Dad to shedding tears together – it was a fabulous and very special time. The healing continues.

Ryan summarizes it so well, I figured I’d just send you over to his blog to read about it here.

Thanks to everyone for the prayers and for those who sent us encouraging texts, emails, and FB messages! I’ll leave you all with some pics.

Tomorrow we fly to Boston.

4 Nov

Tomorrow morning, we are getting up early to take the girls to Grandma’s and then Ryan and I will head to DFW to hop on a plane to Boston! This upcoming weekend is one that is sure to be special. A memory maker.

We are going to Manchester, NH to run in a half marathon. But not just any half marathon. My Dad was registered to run in this race…the last race he had registered for and one none of us could have ever imagined that he wouldn’t be here to run in. He & my sister did this race last year and both had registered to do it again. Here’s a pic of them last year that I absolutely love. It captures so much.

So we are all headed North to run it in his honor. In fact, my brother Kelly is going to pick up my Dad’s bib at the expo and run as Kip Clark. Knowing my Dad – he would love this and think its neat.

My Aunt Debbie (Dad’s sister) and her family live there and we will get to stay with them for the weekend. I look forward to spending time with them. My Dad loved visiting Boston and New Hampshire – he along with my sister Jen have told me all about it there and I can’t wait to see the sites and experience it for myself.

Its going to be a special weekend and one of celebration of my Dad’s life. I will post pics and details about the weekend and race day soon. But, in the mean time, we certainly appreciate your prayers…for my siblings, Ryan, and myself as we travel and as we run – no doubt, it will be the most emotional race we’ve done.

The scary horse puppet.

3 Nov

Last night at bedtime, we had our first experience with one of our kids being scared to tears and not wanting to go to bed. We’ve been asked about monsters before, but usually they take our word for it that monsters don’t exist, so its a quick conversation and no tears are involved. Well, last night was a different story.

Addi tells us that she doesn’t want to go to bed because of the horse that comes in her room. What? She went on to explain that the night before last, a horse came in her room and gave her a kiss. A kiss? Not a kiss! And she did NOT want the horse to come in again. Of course we tried to tell her that horses don’t come in houses, our doors our locked, he’s not real but if he were Daddy wouldn’t let him in, maybe she dreamed it, etc. She was highly upset and it delayed her bedtime about fifteen minutes. Might have been part of the plan? But regardless, I felt bad for her…my poor baby was scared!

We asked Kamryn, “Did you see a horsey?” hoping she would say no, to ease her sister’s mind. Well, her response was, “Yes! And a bear came too and said ‘ROAR’ to me and I hit him.” Oh my, what imaginations! Kamryn did try to comfort Addi by saying things like, “I like horses and sheep too.” and “If a horse comes in the door, Daddy will spank it.”

Finally after asking a series of questions to get to the root of her fear, we found out that there is a scene in one of our Baby Einstein videos (which they really don’t ever watch anymore, since they are older), where a puppet horse scares his friends by peeking his head through a door. A boo! She doesn’t like that part, says its not nice and apparently has made her scared to go to bed. In case you haven’t seen this horse, here he is. Pretty scary looking huh?

He better leave my baby alone & stop trying to give her smooches at night! Or else, Daddy will spank him.

DIY: Fire pit.

31 Oct

Ryan and I have been wanting to get a fire pit for our backyard for a while. Well, really ever since we went to visit my brother in Austin a few months back and sat out by their’s one night. So relaxing and provides such great ambiance! Plus, we love camping so much – we thought this would bring a part of that experience right into our backyard. We shopped around some and even looked into chimineas.

My very creative and super manly husband (wink) decided he was going to build one of his own. It seriously took him maybe thirty minutes and it looks awesome! I know I was impressed with his skillz. We used it last night and loved it. We sat out by the fire and enjoyed some chocolate chip cookies while cuddling with the girls – memory maker.

So, for anyone out there who’s interested in building your very own fire pit, here’s how we did it!

1. Find a spot in your yard for your fire pit location. Obviously a safe distance from your home and other burnable stuff. We used 16 – 1 ft x 1 ft path stones for our base.

2. Dig up the grass where the stones will be placed so the base will be level with the rest of the yard. Place stones about a 1/4 inch apart, pressing each down into fresh dirt. Then cover with one bag of paver sand and press into cracks.

3. Assemble flagstone landscape blocks of your choice into a circle. We bought 20 blocks total, 10 for each layer. Leave a small space between each to allow for better air flow.

4. We found some river rocks in the base of a potted plant, so we used those inside the circle of blocks along with the excess sand to create a safe burning spot.

5. On the second layer of landscape blocks, lay them offset from the first layer for strength and aesthetics. Then, sweep up remaining sand and put in center of pit.

That’s it! Our very own custom built fire pit. Super easy and cheaper than buying a store bought one. Plus, it was fun to do! It will last for a long time and provide many opportunities for relaxing Fall evenings of great discussions with friends around a fire and smore making with our babies.

My cousin, Christi.

29 Oct

My cousin, Christi, was born two weeks after I was and literally ever since then, she has been one of my very best friends. We grew up together. We were always together as kids, played together often and fought like sisters. Then, when I was in sixth grade and Dad became a pastor- my family moved away and we were heartbroken to leave one another. But, we always kept in contact and visited each other. We went to college at Tech together and shared an apartment…us, along with her sister, Staci, and our friend, Amanda. Yep, 4 girls in a two bedroom apartment – fun times! We were in each other’s weddings. We were there for each other after the birth of our babies. We have been through a lot together to say the least. Now that we are older, have our own families, and live about an hour & a half from each other – we just don’t see each other as often as we’d like. And if we do, its usually at a big family function where we really don’t have much time to really talk. So we planned a night for just her & I to have a girls night out – just the two of us to catch up, share, laugh, and be silly like we used to. We did this last night & I loved it! We had a great time. I am thankful for her and the rest of  my family!