Monday, December 29, 2008


We don't know where the started, or why exactly, but Hunter has NAILED a very effective dirty look, and for whatever reason, it is usually directed at his Daddy. Makes me giggle...thought you would want to see it. This was taken (by Brian, of course~ hee hee!) on Christmas morning. Not sure what he was mad about, b/c he was up to his eyeballs in all kind of new toys...

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas at the Farm

So...we headed up to my parents' farm in Bowie at around 9:30...ready for Christmas #3. When we arrived everyone was all ready to open gifts, so we got right to it. Harrison ripped through his in no time, and was so excited by everything (he's so fun to watch b/c he has the best reactions). He was especially pumped about his new MP3 player from Reagan and Jon, but had said over and over that this had been the best Christmas EVER all around. Greatness.

Hunter got the new Elmo Live from Mimi and Papa, and it was just about the cutest thing ever watching him talk to Elmo, and listening to Elmo talk to him (check out the pics of that). Hudson was is usual sweet self, excited about everything, and wanting to play with each thing as he opened it. After the boys were done with their gifts, Mimi and Papa told them that there might be one more thing outside for them, and that they needed to check. So off we headed to the garage, and when the door opened, there were 3 new electric cars for the boys to drive sitting in there! You should have heard the squealing! And off they drove to check out their new rides. :) Such a great surprise!

We had a wonderful Christmas dinner (Mom is so good at that~ the turkey, dressing~ my favorite, green beans, potatoes, apple pie, etc. etc. etc.). Needless to say, we all ate more than we should, and were stuffed. After dinner we went on a hay ride of sorts (there was no hay) on Dad's trailer that he pulled with his tractor~ so funny, but fun at the same time.

Later that night the grownups played Scrabble and the Wii (hilarious), while the boys played with all of their new toys. They were so good, which made the trip even better.

Brian and talked on the way home the next day about how this was the best farm trip we had had in a long time. It's always fun to get away, but this time was even better. Playing games with Jon & Reagan, Todd & Beth, and Mom & Dad was so fun, the hayride was goofy but lots of fun...we laughed a lot, and it was great.

We are so incredibly blessed, all the way around, with family who love us, with more gifts than we deserve, with the most wonderful way to spend the celebration of our Savior's couldn't have been better.

Christmas Morning

So fun! After the Christmas Eve service we went to look at Christmas lights. They were beautiful, and it was so funny listening to Hunter. He is obsessed with lights of all kinds, and all the different colored ones just about made his little head explode. :) "Geen lights! Boo lights! Re lights" (Hunter speak).

Then we headed home to get settled for Santa's visit. We had a slumber party in our room that night, as a way to insure that the boys wouldn't be up too early. Last year Brian and I were awakened to them playing with the toys Santa had brought. Not cool. Harry and Hud slept on a pallet on the floor, and Hunter slept in bed with us. It was kind of a long night, but made a great memory.

At 6:15 we gave up on getting them to wait, and headed out to see what Santa had brought. It's so fun seeing their favorite part! We had so much fun opening presents, took our time watching each other, and everyone was thrilled with everything, which was great. We ate breakfast with Nana, she took Addy home with her (thank you!) and we loaded up to head to the farm. And the story continues...

Christmas Eve

I have so much to blog that I'm a little overwhelmed...Christmas Eve was greatness! We went over to Nana's for an early dinner (she made her chili~ my favorite!!), exchanged gifts, played the Wii, and went to the Christmas Eve service at church together. It's always fun going over there...I just wish that all of us had been together it. But we had a GREAT time with Nana and Aunt Stacey...thanks for a great Christmas!

The Obsession Begins

My littlest man has suddenly become very passionate about watching Blue's Clues. Not exactly sure where he even saw it the first time (they aren't on Noggin nearly as much as they used to sad, 'cause it really is a great show, but thankfully we get as many as we want for free through our AT&T U-Verse. Yay for Hunter. Trying to control how often he watches is proving to be way more of a challenge...

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Christmas Programs

This has been a crazy week full of programs and parties! Hud's program was Thursday morning, Harrison's was Thursday night, we had the church staff party Thursday night, our Sunday School party last night...I'm tired, but it's been fun. :)

I wasn't able to get any good pictures from Harrison's program Thursday night. My camera doesn't have a good enough zoom, and the lighting is horrible in the auditorium at his school, but rest assured that he did a great job. They did a Christmas Down Under theme, and it was very cute. :) I will see if my sister or mom got any better ones, and will post those later.

I had been told by a couple of people at Hud's school that he had turned his music rehearsal on Tuesday into his personal karaoke bar, b/c he was loving the microphone. So funny. But on Thursday he got the stage fright, and decided with his friend Caden that they were NOT going to sing in front of all those people. He looked so sad (and so very cute at the same time) standing up there, that it took all I had not to run up there and rescue him. By the last song though, he was at least smiling again.

After it was over I told him how handsome he looked up there, and asked him why he didn't want to sing and he gave me two different stories: 1) "I didn't like all those people looking at me." (competely understood, I don't like that either), and 2) I wanted to sing a rock 'n roll song, NOT a Christmas song (I have not a clue where that came from, but it made me smile). :)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Eli Update

The boys are taking Eli the Elf's whereabouts VERY SERIOUSLY, and they have been very well behaved so far this month. :) They love to see where he has decided to sit each morning, and have found him in some funny places. This elf has quite the personality. We are all having fun with Eli. :)

This morning we found him in the middle of our Nativity scene, right up close to Jesus. I guess he wanted to get a good look at him, and maybe, like us, craves being close to Him. I've been especially emotional about Christmas this year...not exactly sure what makes this year different from the others. It has always been my favorite time of year, and I've always loved celebrating the birth of our Savior along with my family and friends...and these past couple years have been bittersweet b/c of the death of my sweet Dandy just a few days before Christmas nearly 3 years ago, a very weird mix of sadness, missing him while at the same time excitement over the magic of this time of year, and how fun watching the excitement in the boys' faces as the big day gets closer...I don't know what it is.

Listen to the words of the song that is playing right now~ "Joseph's Lullaby", by MercyMe. I love the Christmas songs that are taken from Mary's perspective, and this is the only one I know of from Joseph's, and it has quickly become one of my favorites. I think it took becoming a parent for me to see Jesus from this perspective. So often I think of him as my Savior, my Lord, my Redeemer, the list goes on and on. But to think of him as a Son, as Joseph's son, and ultimately, as God's Son...a completely different concept. I think about each of my three boys, and am filled with more love than I can explain, and I realize that that is what Joseph felt for Jesus, but he knew what was ahead for overwhelming that had to have been. We think about Jesus' birth and get caught up in the big things, the wisemen coming, the angels singing, the fact that our Savior was born in a dirty barn, which are all remarkable, humbling things, but for whatever reason this year it's the more simple things that are making an incredible impact on me.

I can imagine Joseph holding his newborn son, counting his fingers and toes, trying to figure out who he looks like, enjoying that first precious moment, and then can remember watching Brian hold each of our boys for the first time, and doing all of those same much the same, yet so incredibly different. So listen to the words, because they explain what I'm trying to say so much better, and enjoy the song...hopefully it will give you an even greater understanding of the sacrifices given for us that began with this spectacular birth.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

New York City

Click to play
Create your own scrapbook - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox scrapbook

I don't even know where to begin to describe this was absolutely incredible. This trip was a gift to my sisters and me from our mom and dad last Christmas~ we have been planning and waiting for it all this time, and it was so worth the wait!! My mom, Reagan, Beth, and I have never taken a trip like this, with just the four of us, and after this week have decided that we have been missing out on some much-needed bonding, fun, and just a really great time together.

Some highlights of our week~
1. The city itself is just incredible...such a different way of life with everyone walking everywhere, lots of babies with their mommies or nannies, all of these GREAT little shops everywhere, wonderful bakeries, pizza places, a Starbucks on nearly every corner (good thing we walked as much as we did!) was a totally different way of life, one that I really liked.

2. The people~ they were so accommodating, so helpful, and genuinely nice. Despite our efforts to blend in and not be tourists, so many times people could tell we weren't "locals" and would offer to help us find where we were going, take our pictures, ask where we were from, how we liked the city, etc. etc. I really don't know where the idea that New Yorkers are rude came from, because not one time did we experience anything like that. In fact, I found that the people there were more friendly and genuinely interested in striking up a conversation than people typically are here. Interesting, huh?

3. The Rockettes~ my personal highlight of the week. Maybe it's the old Dixie Belle in me or something, I don't know, but I have wanted to see the Rockettes perform for as long as I can remember. Watching the Radio City Music Hall's Christmas Spectacular was absolutely amazing. The Rockette's performance was flawless, breathtaking...the whole show was magical. I was seriously moved to tears by the end of it.

4. Bloomingdale's~ speaking of being moved to tears, our first night there we walked around and ended up in Bloomingdales. It was a great department store of course, but that's not what made me get emotional. That happened as we were leaving the store. We walked out and started looking at the Christmas decorations in each window of the store~ each one was a different, retro-y vintage looking Christmas scene. Christmas music was playing, and there were Christmas lights all over anything that would stand still, and I got choked up. I guess I couldn't believe that I was actually in New York, and it was a very surreal, incredible feeling that I will never forget.

5. Live with Regis and Kelly~ on our second day there we got up early and headed down to where Live was taped, in hopes of getting stand-by tickets. We waited patiently, and were finally told that all seats were full, but that we were welcome to stand on the side of the studio and watch, or we could come back for VIP passes the next day. The lady that offered that to us was so incredibly nice (her job would be such a cool one to have!), and we offered to take the tickets for the next day. When we came back, she remembered us, and took us right to these roped off seats in the front row, thanking us for being so nice the day before. Hard to believe she was thanking us for being nice...makes me wonder what kind of people she has to deal with on a daily basis. But anyways...seeing Regis and Kelly up close was greatness~ she is the TINIEST thing I have ever seen, and was just as I expected her to be~ funny, genuine, really sweet, and so beautiful. Regis was precious, funny, cute as could be too. They taped the first 15-minute segments for the Dec. 29 and 30 shows (they will be on vacation) while we were there too, so you'll have to check those out and see if you can find us!

6. Serendipity~ a restaurant I have heard about several times...ever heard of their famous Frozen Hot Chocolates? They were SO YUM...the owner was walking around talking to everybody (have I mentioned that this is a friendly city?!?), and it was a really fun place to eat.

There were so many other things...riding the subway, the cabs, trying (unsuccessfully) to get on The View (oh, well), the shopping, the sightseeing...I could go on and on. The best part was getting to spend that time with my mom and sisters. We made so many memories, and I am SO INCREDIBLY THANKFUL to my parents for sending us. I know it wasn't easy on my dad, Brian, and the boys to let us go, so thank you too boys for unselfishly letting us do this. I am forever thankful for this trip, and will never forget it. :)

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Hunter's First Party

Tonight my nearly two-year-old went to his first party, for his friend Alexa's 2nd birthday. These two are in school together, and go to church together as well, and are buddies. They had so much fun playing, sharing a cake :), and playing some more. Fun, Fun was had by all!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Eli the Elf (On the Shelf)

A new tradition started in the Hatcher House night~ The Elf on the Shelf. I posted about this earlier this month (check out the Elf on the Shelf post).

We had a great Thanksgiving day at Nana's house~ had a wonderful meal, took a walk to the park to let the kids (and us!) play for awhile, threw rocks and sticks in the lake by her house, came back for pumpkin pie...greatness. When we got home it was time to start our new tradition. Out came the Elf and the book that accompanies him. Brian read the story to them, and Harrison and Hudson were completely intrigued. Hunter was curious for awhile, but then had other things to do, like steal the camera away from me. :)

Anyway, the boys named our elf Eli, and we placed him on top of the tv for his first night in our house, on duty. Hud is not quite sure what to think of him, I think he is a little freaked out, yet fascinated at the same time. He wouldn't talk to him, didn't want to touch him, and asked Brian to move Eli so that he wasn't staring at him. Too funny. :) He's apparently got a little of his mama in him. :) I think he is darling though, and love that he is all retro-y and cute. We'll see what kind of effect he has on the Hatcher boys...

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Snickerdoodles and A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving

Does it get much better than this? We don't think so. :)

My Baby LOVES Babies!

I had no idea...he's usually the youngest one around. But today my sister brought over her nephew for a few minutes, and Hunter was so excited! He kept putting his head on Carter's head, and saying "baby, baby" over and over. It was very sweet...isn't it great to see your kids showing love to other people? For a fleeting moment I thought of how great it would have been to have had one more baby ourselves, so that he would get to be a big brother, but the moment quickly passed. You have to break the chain at some point. We're all good in the kiddo department around here. :)

On a different note, I saw a side of him I didn't expect to see this morning while we were at the dentist. Harry and Hud were getting their checkups, and we were waiting for them. There was another little boy about his age playing in the waiting area, and he wasn't real keen on sharing, b/c every time Hunter would try to play with him the brat would scream bloody murder. I fully expected Hunter Man to hold his own with that kid, but instead he came running to me with the saddest lip and eyes full of tears. So many emotions hit me at once: 1) sadness that he was treated that way, 2) thankfulness that he relied on me to save him from the bratty kid, and 3) surprise~ those of you who know Hunter well know he is as stubborn as he is sweet...I'm surprised he put up with that nonsense. He has two brothers who both protect him and also give him plenty of opportunities to learn how to hold his own, so I'm sure he'll figure it out soon enough. :) In the meantime, I perfectly happy with him running to the safety of my arms.

Miss Sterling is HOME!

Actually, she came home last Friday, and is doing so very good. She seems very happy in her new home. :) I got the pleasure of getting to go see her and FINALLY hold her on Sunday before Tomi and I went to see Twilight (which I HIGHLY recommend, by the way, but only after you've read the book!!!)

It was so fun getting to love on that baby girl~ feeding her and changing her diaper was fun...partly because I love babies so much, but mostly because I (we all) have been so worried about her, and it was great to see her at home, healthy, growing, content as can be, and free from all of those scary machines, tubes, and wires. She is doing great, and seemed to love her Aunt Jac very much. :)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Sweet Sleepy Boy

Hunter is FINALLY sleeping good in his big boy bed~ yay! No fussing, sleeping through the night (with the exception of one attempt to get into our bed, to which we promptly put him back in his bed). So we'll take that, over the hours of sadness and getting up repeatedly. All of the Hatcher's are sleeping better...happiness.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Bigger the Bow, the Better (Healthier) the Girl

I am thrilled to report that Miss Sterling is making big steps towards getting better! Her vent is on the minimum output (which is a big step, even though they have told Tomi and Randy to expect her to still be on it for a few days possibly), one of her chest tubes came out yesterday, and the other one should come out soon (tomorrow?) hopefully.

Tomi was able to put one her darling big bows on that sweet baby's little punkin head last night, and that seems to make all of the difference. She opened her eyes, and has been making big improvements ever since! Check out the pics on Tomi's blog!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Elf on the Shelf

Today Mimi came by with a special present for the boys. She brought them the "Elf on the Shelf". It's this super cute little elf that comes with a book and a special story. The story of the elf goes as follows:

Santa sent this elf to live at our house and keep an eye on the boys. Throughout the day he will sit in one spot and make sure they are behaving. Then at night after the boys are asleep, he will fly back to the North Pole to report back to Santa. The next morning when the boys wake up, they will have to search the house to see where their elf has decided to sit and watch for that day. They can talk to their new little friend as much as they want, but they are not allowed to touch him.

They were very excited about their new elf friend...I'm excited to see what kind of impact he has on their behavior. :) The elf will be set out on Thanksgiving, and then the fun begins! Will report back soon!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Miss Sterling Maye

She's here! Tomi and Randy became the parents to a beautiful baby girl last night at 10:57 pm. She weighed 6 pounds, 6 ounces, and is 18 and 3/4 inches long. She has just the right amount of dark hair, and the prettiest little mouth. She is all kinds of yummy, that one. I was in such a hurry to get the hospital in time last night that I left without my camera, and therefore missed all kinds of GREAT photo opps. At about one o'clock this morning, the nurse brought her in so Tomi could hold her for a little bit, and it was so precious. I was so thankful that I stuck around for that, and that I didn't miss the chance to see her.

Because she is a month early, her lungs are not quite ready yet, so she will be spending a little bit of time in the NICU. Randy took my camera in there so that I could have a few pictures of this sweet baby girl. She is breathing on her own, but is on about 23% oxygen right now, and will be fine. She just needs a little time. Tomi and Randy are handling all of this like champs...they are tired, and would love nothing more than to have her in the room with them, but are trusting that it won't be long before that will happen. In the meantime we are keeping them company. :)

I can't explain the emotions that come with being on this side of things. I'm always a sap when it comes to babies, but it's different when it's a baby that belongs to someone I care about so much. Tomi has always been the friend that was there for the duration with the births of each of my boys, and it was so much fun to get to do the same for her last night. And to see Tomi at a place in her life where everything is right~ she has an incredible husband who adores her, and sweet, fun 12-year-old son, and now a precious baby girl that she and Randy will get to share. Tomi had to go through a lot of yuck to get to where she is today, so I get a little emotional now when I see her getting to experience things like this, the way they are meant to be...minus the whole NICU thing (I really wish we could have skipped that, but I know Sterling is going to be fine)'s pretty incredible.

I will post more pictures soon...please pray that Sterling can move out of the NICU very soon!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Big Boy Haircut

Hunter will be two in two months (REALLY?!?) and he has never had an official haircut. My friend Tomi has given him a much needed trim once, but that has been it. This week I noticed that his hair was hanging in his eyes, and looking really shaggy, so I took it upon myself to give him a trim. Big mistake. I totally messed his hair up. And I had loved it so much~ I'm still in mourning.

Monday afternoon I took him for a haircut, begging the girl to just trim what she had to in order to even up what I had messed up, thinking it will grow back eventually to the awesome hair he had before. He was a champ through the whole thing, and we left, my baby looking like a little old man with a combover. So sad.

Today I played with it a little and gave him a messy, curly spikey 'do. His hair is so different from the boys, I don't know what to do with it. But we're figuring it out, and he's looking pretty cute, just too old. My baby is growing up.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Hope Your Halloween is Rockin'!

We love you!

Alvin, Simon, and Theodore Chipmunk

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Happiness, Courtesy of Hudson

Art, in it's purest form. A drawing of Hudson and Harrison, drawn by my Hud-Man, age 4. How much do you love the spikey hair on these boys? If this doesn't make you smile, nothing will. :)

Major Progress!

Time to give an update on the Craft Room. I just might have the best husband ever~ for so many reasons, but most recently for getting my (our) room painted and the shelves up so super fast. It's very blue, I know, and I love it. Makes it cheerful and happy...I can't wait to get in there and work now. This is exactly what I needed.

While out with Tomi on Sunday I found these black polka dot sheer panels, and decided they were a must-have. I still need to make some kind of valance (I'm thinking maybe zebra-print with some funky red trim to go across the top, but we'll see. Still lots of decorating, finishing the boys' art corner (the desk has been repainted, but not moved back in yet), etc. etc. But it's coming along, and I'm loving it very much...feeling so very inspired...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Gearing up for my CRAFT ROOM!

Yay! I can't believe I'm actually showing you what a disaster this room is right now...pretty embarrassing. But I wanted you to see the "before" shot, and hopefully by knowing that all of you have seen this, I will be motivated to hurry up and make the transformation.

I've been collecting all sorts of things to turn this into an art/craft room for us. Since I work from home, a space to do all of my stuff really has become a necessity. My hope is to make it a fun, artsy, inspiring room for all of us to use. I will post the progression as we get everything painted, reorganized, curtains made, etc., etc., etc. Hopefully it will be finished soon...

Monday, October 20, 2008

Spooky House, Part 2

Ok, so the boys couldn't wait another day to finish our house, so we squeezed it in today between after school and making dinner before I had to run off to teach a class. We had so much fun with this part! I wasn't sure how this would go, but it was fun and easy, and the boys did a great job. Even Hunter took part, helping with the gum drops and jelly beans, and he was very proud of his work. Let us know what you think!

Spooky House Part 1

The boys are working very hard on this haunted gingerbread house. Last night was the house building phase, and tomorrow will be the decorating phase. Take a look at our progress, and check back tomorrow for the finished project!