31 March 2010

Spring Break

We went nowhere. I had babysitting kids all week. James is home, five kids, me, two dogs, four babysitting kids (are you counting all this?) plus friends here for the day, just a few hours, spending the night, multiple nights... At one point I counted 15 people in the house at once. Our house is NOT that big, friends. That was spring break. Lots of friends, lots of fantastic weather and lots of sleeping late. Plus, as you might guess from the above photograph, one afternoon at the pool. Just the Ball Team and me. Goofing off in the water. We are SO VERY ready for summer!
Jay Michael tries on the flippers and two shots of Josephine - this girl knows what a camera is for!

30 March 2010

I'm Not Old

I just had a birthday. I love my birthday. It's on St. Patrick's Day, which is just enough of a holiday that people know about it, but, not so much of a holiday that it still can't be all about me. This year did not disappoint. I had a green lunch and a candy-gram, courtesy of my wonderful friends:

I had flowers, courtesy of my wonderful parents (see above). And I had presents and pumpkin pie, courtesy of my wonderful family. Wonderful.

26 March 2010

Still Beautiful

She did a forward roll off of the top bunk - but she's still beautiful! Josephine, five years old.

Rae is Twelve

Yes, twelve years ago, Rachel Mae Ball transformed James and Tina Ball into new people, called Dad and Mom. Twelve years ago. It has taken so long to get this blog post done because Rachel's birthday celebration has taken so long. Twelve is a big number and requires much celebrating.

Traditional finger shot and cheescake!
First, she is now finished with the children's organization, the Primary, at our church and can join the Young Women's organization. On Rachel's last day in Primary, the Young Women came in and "kidnapped" her out to join them. I was happy for her and a little sad...
The Young Women decorated her door and left treats and balloons!

Second, she is old enough for a few milestones she's been looking forward to: at twelve you can legally sit in the front seat of a car, and our family rule of "you can't get your ears pierced until you are twelve."
Third, over Spring Break, we took five of Rae's friends to the biggest mall in Little Rock (three stories!) to have a birthday party. We did a digital scavenger hunt through the mall. The kids were very well behaved - dashing off in teams to find a list of three items and seeing who could return first with pictures - and they even took the little ladies with them on a few rounds.

Rachel, before our very eyes, is transforming from a cute kid into a beautiful young woman. At twelve, Rachel loves to write, she plays soccer, she helps me more around the house than even she realizes. She loves to ride her bike, talk and text with her friends and she goes to the store for me. Rachel writes songs, stories and poems. She is musical and sings throughout the house. She leave her radio on all the time. Rachel loves to be with people, and she is great company. She's funny, without being a clown. She is thoughtful, responsible and trustworthy. I am proud to call her my daughter. Happy Birthday, Rae.

11 March 2010

Josephine's two-wheeler

It took just one day of 60 degree temperatures to spur us on. The kids had all their bikes up on their handlebars so Dad could tighten screws, adjust seat heights and inflate tires. Off they went. Everyone had to have a few adjustments, but, Josephine had the biggest one of all - two wheels! At five, she learned in just one afternoon how to balance, turn and crash lightly into the grass. Her bike now goes with us easily to the afternoon park jaunt, so she can feel the wind in her hair!

06 March 2010


James and I were talking the other day about the shows we watched as kids in the early 70's. Thanks to technology and YouTube, we can all share. Remember these, anyone?

We also remembered Romper Room, UltraMan, Captain Kangaroo, Speed Racer, Shazam, HR Puff'N'Stuff, Mulligan Stew, the Flintstones, Banana Splits, Electric Company, and on ... being a carefree kid of the 70's was wonderful!

03 March 2010

KidBits 3 March 2010

Here's our latest happenings, in blurb form, mainly for the grandfolks, but feel free to read along...

Rachel has been straightening her hair and her sisters' hair lately. She likes it straight. I like the curls. I like the straightened version, too, it's just that she seems older with it straight. Meanwhile, her middle school held an event called iBand. Each sixth grader had the chance to try each instrument offered in the junior high band. That way the band director can have a better feel for the rising seventh graders and where their abilities lie. Rachel made the percussion section. She's excited. She'll play the snare, the timpani, the bells, the cymbals and the keyboard in the course of a year in band. Way to go Rachel.

Samantha, pictured here with her hair straightened, too, and playing in the glitzy fabrics, has been busy in her social studies class. The class had a geography bee and Samantha was the winner in her class (about 25 students)! Then, her team (five classes of fifth graders) had a bee and she won that, too! THEN, she went on to represent the fifth grade in a geography bee for our county, and lost. Still.... Yeah, Samantha!

Charlotte and Josephine went out for ice cream - the big ladies each had a sleepover and the little ladies wanted something special, too. So, dollar cones at Sonic, in bathing suits, of course, hit the spot. Josephine is showing off her "jewelry" - gummy life savers.

And this Jay Michael. Just being happy and playing with Dad. Ah, to be two...

01 March 2010

Blue and Gold Banquet

So I have this calling at church. Me, the mother of four daughters and one two year old son. I am the Webelos Leader. I get to spend my Wednesday afternoons with five 10 year old boys. I am helping them get to the next step in scouting, which is a mystery to me since I have never had anything to do with Scouts until now. The whole program is coming together, bit by bit, and somehow I am muddling through.

Last week we had the annual Blue and Gold Banquet. We had a spaghetti bar, a cupcake eating contest (with no hands, of course) and a pinata. I think it went well. But, what do I know? I've only been in scouts for about two months! Here's the highlight reel:
face first :::: Cameron has to "find" his Bear; with darts
My Webelos! Jalen, Liam, Layton and Spencer. One more, not pictured - Zach. At the Blue and Gold Banquet, they earned a total of nine activity badges! Don't they look like they can teach me something about Scouts? Great shot, guys!
Oh, and that first picture is a CAKE! We asked Krista (aka Spencer's Mom) to make a cake for the families and cupcakes for the boys. This is what she brought! Amazing, right? Thanks again, Krista!