Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Apples Don't Fall Far From The Tree

I remember quite well the day my mom brought home a brand new pair of sewing scissors. I remember her very clearly explaining that these scissors were only for fabric. I couldn't get over the idea that those scissors would only work on fabric and nothing else. I went over to check them out and brought them with me as I got into my bath that night. I decided that I would test out those scissors for my mom. I opened them up as wide as they would go, and snip, cut a huge V shape into the back of my hair.
When the lady at the salon finished evening things out, my hair was quite short. I don't remember having any problem with the 6 or so inches that were cut off, but I do remember the discussion with my mom about how we never, never cut our own hair.
Brynne has been equally fascinated with the scissors at our house. She found a pair of scissors one day and snipped off the ribbons used to tie a cushion to her rocking chair.
Another time she cut the rubber scales and fin off of her mermaid barbie to see what a mermaids legs looked like. She cut the floor length curtains in her room. Just on one side, just for fun she said.
I have yet to replace them.Regardless of hiding all our scissors in all of the highest hiding places, she always manages to come up with a pair.

When Wes called me a week ago while Jeff and I were at a friends house, I could tell he was pretty upset. "Mom I have something really bad to tell you" I braced myself and prepared for the worst. "Mom, Brynne cut her hair..." "How short" was my only reply. "Well it's still long in the back..."

I thanked him for calling and said I'd see him at home in a while. I didn't say anything to any of the 8 other people there about my phone call. Not even Jeff. I wasn't ready to talk about it and I didn't want to give in to my urge to go strait home to see how bad it was. There was nothing I could do about it.
No matter how hard I laughed at Josh and Jeremy doing the train together while playing Wii,
Jason taking his job at the drums so seriously,
Jeff trying to figure out the maracas,
or Tiffany tapping into her rock star,
I just couldn't get Brynne out of my head.
Once we were in the car on our way home I broke the news to Jeff. When we got home we saw the pile of her hair on the kitchen floor.

Then she came into the room. I am not sure how she knew that she has ties to Idaho, but boy did she look like she'd fit right in with the best of them. My daughter had cut herself a mullet!!!

I just sat there breathing in and out for a bit and then took her to the bathroom and worked with what was left of her hair. Desperately trying to figure out just how I could salvage it. I knew I'd want pictures of it later but just couldn't get a great shot showing just how bad it really was. But here are the sides of her head. Notice the small chunk missing from the top left side towards the back...

The next day I still hadn't figured out what to do with her hair, but it was making me grumpy just thinking about it. She was pretty somber as we went in to get her hair cut. Her only concern was them turning her completely into a boy, and having to wear boy clothes, since boys are the only ones who are supposed to have short hair.

This is my only daughter who was bald for more than the first year of her life. It had finally filled in and was getting pretty long. She was starting to let me put it into pony tails and tie ribbons and clip bows into it on occasion. Those days are long gone now...
A few days later I remembered that I was about her age when I had done the same thing. It dawned on me that my hair had been "fixed" just as short as hers. As Tara was going through all of my moms pictures this week she came across this one right after my hair cut.

How do you like them apples?

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Ranch

Garrett, Austin, Wes, & Zach

It has been a really long time since I have had a chance to go out to the ranch and watch my boys ride. When we first talked to Steve Fogg about using his 20 acre lot to build a track for the boys to ride on, we were out there all the time. Usually with Jeff on the front loader moving dirt just like a little boy in the sand box, making jumps and berms, a kiddie track and a track for the big boys. Brynne loves to ride with Jeff on his bike but has been asking for her own...

This spring a handful of guys pitched in and hired a professional to do his thing out there. After several thousand dollars and a few weeks longer than anyone had anticipated our new track was finished. Wes loves the new jumps out here but I think they all miss the old table top a little.
Most weekends, at some point my guys can be found running around and riding their bikes at the ranch. I finally made it out there and took a few pictures this last weekend. I got a few great shots of my guys.


Jason (left) and Jeff (right)

Friday, January 2, 2009


Every family has traditions. Ours is full of them. Many go back to my mothers childhood, others go back to when the Hurd kids started bringing spouses into the family, and some new ones are being added every year!
In our family we celebrate Christmas Eve Eve, the 23rd of December. This is our Christmas Eve. We start our celebrations a day early so that when we need to spend the Holidays with our Spouse's family we haven't missed out on spending it with ours.

Dinner is strictly appetisers and desserts. This was a request by my aunts and uncles when they were kids and starting their own family traditions. My mom's parents and siblings and their kids have started coming down to Fresno to join us in our Christmas Eve Eve Celebration.

Here are all the kids that were there this year! What a crew!
Ashlyn, Mom, and Tara

Jeff Brynne and I hanging out after dinner, just before we headed out to our annual hay ride around the neighborhood to see the lights and sing Christmas Carols. Usually our ride is pulled by gorgeous horses, but our friend was recovering from surgery this year, so we had our ride pulled by a big ole truck!

A glimpse down my street. I tried to show the bumper to bumper traffic and the hordes of people walking the streets but they didn't turn out. Just know that we had lots of company on the streets with us that night!
My Aunt Michelle and I bundled in hats and scarves for the ride.
Jeff and my cousin Melissa

Sequoia, Lauren, a bit of Austin and Drew, and Brynne

Brynne and I in line to see Santa

Garrett, Drew and Wes on our way back home

Dad and Ashlyn

Mom, Me and Tara walking along side the hay ride

Jeff, Uncle Rick, and Jason getting ready to watch the annual showing of the nativity by the kids and organized for the first time by Sterling and his wife Katie. They are the ultimate organizers of the kids games and activities. The kids worship the ground they walk on!

Somehow this dress was in with our nativity costumes. Brynne saw it and knew instantly it must be Cinderella's dress. She insisted on wearing it and making sure that Cinderella had a part in the Nativity production. Traditionally this isn't how the story goes, but we decided that a princess could assist in the angel's duties.

It was obvious to all that Wes is nearing his spunky teenage years. He was a very macho Joseph this year.

All in all it was a good night. Our Relatives from Sacramento headed home as the locals tucked kids into bed and waited for Santa to arrive.

The morning of the 24th we stumbled out of bed at 7 am, some with just a few hours sleep, and were greeted with the spoils of Christmas from Santa, mom dad and siblings. My parents and Grandparents who had stayed the night and Sterling and Katie came to watch our kids open presents.

Once we finished at home we loaded up the car with gifts for my siblings and parents and the cousin exchange and headed over to my moms. We always have a breakfast casserole and hot chocolate for breakfast. Since Katie has joined the family we have added some yummy sticky buns to our morning feast.

Here are Jeff and the kids at my moms.

By one o'clock we all headed home for naps and to play with our new fun toys. Then we got together again in the evening for dinner and games. Tara was a pro with the eyes closed sketching in Cranium!

On the morning of the 25th we loaded up our cars and drove up to Sacramento to join the rest of the extended family for another Christmas Day. One of our long standing traditions is to play the present game. The one you often play with White Elephant gifts. Everyone gets a number and we go in order unwrapping or stealing each others gifts. We now have a kids game and an adult game and the gifts are usually pretty good so there is a lot of friendly competition! Below are pictures at Steve and Michelle's during the present game.

Brynne kept entertained by learning to ride Murphy, Steve's dog!

We ate a fantastic ham dinner, played lots of games and watched grandma and Grandpa open their gifts. Three days of Christmas fun had left these boys a little slap happy!