"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sunday Snapshot - O Tannenbaum

Thanksgiving means turkey, family, pie, shopping, green bean casserole, and other tasty delights.  It also means time to decorate for Christmas!  This is just what we did, all throughout the week!  The boys had a blast as you can see from below.  Our house is now completely festive and ready for the season!  Enjoy!

 The wreath Amy and I made

 Helping Jack help us decorate the tree!

 They had the best time!

 My little reindeer helpers!

Amy doing her usual job of handing out the ornaments and telling the stories about them!

Our stockings hung with care!

Our family tree upstairs!

Our show tree downstairs!

Ni Hao Y'all


Well, we are officially finished with decorating the house for Christmas!  It only took about a week of sporadic work, but we finished!  Downstairs, upstairs, inside, outside, it's all done!  One of my favorite parts about being in a house vs. an apartment has been the fact that we get to put up and decorate 2 trees!  The tree is definitely my favorite part of Christmas decorations.  We have one upstairs and one downstairs.  The one upstairs is our family tree.  It has all our special family ornaments from when Amy and I were little as well as ones we have accumulated together.  You know, full of memories and reminiscing.  It is artificial for 2 reasons.  One - so we don't have to lug a real tree up and down the stairs, and two - we got an awesome deal the day after Christmas a few years back, something like 80% off.  The downstairs tree has always been real.  This is what I refer to as our "show" tree.  You know, all the ornaments match and there is a theme.  Ours is Red and silver.   I have always been a real tree person, we never had artificial ones growing up.  Kroger, Houston Garden, Home Depot, and Lowe's.  All places I have purchased trees.  Moving out to the middle of suburban nowhere has it's benefits.  Not only are we 15 minutes away from Dewberry Farm for pumpkins in the fall (visit them here) but we are also, somewhat, close to a great Christmas tree farm - Spring Creek Growers (visit them here).  For the past 2 years we have been going there to cut down our own trees and it has been great.  We have gotten some great memories and great pictures.  This year though, things went differently.  We typically go to get our real tree the day after Thanksgiving.  This year we made the momentous and difficult (for me) decision to purchase an artificial tree for downstairs.  It may sound silly but it really was tough decision for me.  But, with the house being on the market it just seemed easier to go the least-messy route and get another artificial one.  It's beautiful, thank you Martha Stewart via Home Depot!  

On the bright side though, Scentsy makes a holiday scent called Christmas Tree that smells just like, you guessed it, a fresh cut Christmas tree!  And we're not talking a fake smell like those little tree-shaped air fresheners you put in your car.  This smells like an actual tree!  While I was out putting up the exterior lights Amy switched out the scent in the living room to Christmas Tree to surprise me.  She's great isn't she?  A keeper for sure! Got an artificial tree but still want to enjoy the fragrance of a real one?  (Shameless plug alert!) Visit Amy's website here to learn more about it and/or purchase!  :)  So, real or artificial?  I enjoy both.  Although I have to admit that I do enjoy the clean and less-messy approach offered by the artificial options!  Regardless, the house looks wonderful and we are ready for this most exciting season!

All is well, for real, in Drosche Land.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Gobble Gobble Shop

Well, Thanksgiving has come and gone.  Turkey, pie, dressing, green bean casserole, we had it all!  We had a lot to be thankful for this year.  In addition to the usual things: family, friends, jobs, etc. we also were thankful for the fact that this was the first full year of our freedom from debt!  It has been an amazing year and we have come so far.  We also were thankful for this because we are so close to starting the adoption!  Next Thanksgiving we will (hopefully) be fully into it and possibly thankful for some great news!

In addition to the great food, we also got to experience Black Friday for the first time.  We headed out into the cold and rainy night to wait in line for deals at Toys R Us and WalMart.  We then headed back out at the crack of dawn for more fun at Target and Costco.  We ended up saving tons of money and had a blast doing so!  Definitely started a new yearly tradition.  I am also happy to say that, in reference to the above portion about Dave Ramsey, everything we bought was paid for with cash!  Woo hoo!

Lastly, what Thanksgiving would be complete without Christmas decorating?  We actually began last week but really got into it today as we put the tree up in the loft.  The kids had a ton of fun decorating it and then decorating the mini one in their bedroom.  Tomorrow we plan to head out to cut down the tree for downstairs and that will conclude our decorating!  I'm smelling a Sunday Snapshot!  Speaking of pictures, I took loads of all the cousins playing together on Thanksgiving.  Below are two of my favorites of the boys!  All in all it has been an excellent vacation, one everyone here in Drosche Land definitely needed!  I'm excited about tomorrow!  I am totally in the Christmas spirit now thanks to the shopping, decorating, and Christmas music playing on the radio!  Just 29 short days!

All is well, will a lot to be thankful for, here in Drosche Land.

Braeden always knows how to stop and pose for me!

  Jack was also willing to oblige!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


So the last post fraught with the excited anticipation of what joys our Open House would bring.  Ok, maybe not fraught, but definitely hopeful.  Well, as one can surmise from the fact that a follow-up post was never written, the Open House was a bust.  A huge one in fact because no one, yes not one, single, solitary would-be home buyer stopped by.  The only person enjoying our freshly cleaned home was a lonely real estate agent.  For all I know he sat on my couch, watched my TV, ate my food, and rifled through my underwear drawer.  Just kidding, I doubt he did.  Although I have to admit that the thought has crossed my mind about how eerie it is to have complete strangers wandering around your house when you aren't there.  Oh well, I hope he enjoyed himself!  So what now?  I have no clue actually.  Our realtor called Amy yesterday and basically just said such is the issue with selling a house during the holiday season.  So we wait.  Some more.  In all actuality the house has only been listed a month.  Today marks the one month mark from when we signed all of the paperwork to list the house.  Again, on the bright side the house is remarkably tidy considering we have the boys who, at times, seem to think it is their sole life goal to create mess and mayhem.  Currently the house is undergoing a seasonal decoration change as we pack away the harvest items of pumpkins, leaves, oranges, and browns.  Out come greens, reds, and all the glittery Christmas paraphernalia!  Yes I know, poor Tom Turkey gets the shaft here in Drosche Land.  The world has seemingly skipped over Thanksgiving in order to get a jump start on Christmas.  We here have hopped on the band wagon, mainly because a week-long vacation is the best time for us to do massive redecorating.  Sorry Tom!  

So, the house remains listed.  You can always view/share/buy it here!  I guess in the scheme of things a month is a very short time for the listing, especially given the time of year.  I remain optimistically hopeful that next year we will be celebrating Thanksgiving and Christmas in our new house!  Look out Jersey Village, here come the Drosches!

All is well, still listed, in Drosche Land!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Wide Open

So today was our first Open House since our house has been listed.  It was scheduled to be held from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.  I have no clue how it went and I am wondering when it will be before we hear?  We started cleaning and organizing yesterday and then kicked it into high gear this morning.  There wasn't too much work to be done since we have been so busy that we haven't had much time to clutter it up.  We left this morning at around 9:30 since we had some other errands to run and Amy had a Scentsy party to go to.  Another launch of one of her team members, Robin, actually.  So, I'm not even sure how we will tell if anyone came or not when we get home.  I counted the flyers in the house before we left - 15.  So I will see if there are any fewer than that when we get home.  Other than that I guess it is just a waiting game to see when/if the realtor calls us to let us know.  We were slightly hesitant because our realtor wouldn't actually be there, he was busy.  Instead, he was sending one of his people.  So who knows?  On the bright side if we don't get any offers at least the house will be super clean for Amy's Scentsy Open House in 2 weeks!  So, hopefully I will be back later to blog about Open House news, given there are any hints or details left behind!  Otherwise, I will just be back with a Sunday Snapshot, which I'm still working on.  Until then, we wait.  Not my favorite game!

All is well, open for business, in Drosche Land. 

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Course Grind

Well, if you haven't guessed by the (I think pretty clever) title of this post and its labels, this is about the coursework for our M.Ed. adventure.  Now, don't get me wrong.  I'm all for being a life-long learner, staying on top of what's new, and furthering my education; but I'm about done.  It's not that the work is hard, just time-consuming and cumbersome.  I shouldn't complain though I know because this has all been free to me through Trinity (I LOVE my job!).  But still.  I have forgotten what it is like to not have homework or have to submit an assignment.  To just be able to come home and now worry about what discussion questions I have to answer, papers to complete, or journals to write.  Maybe I am partly (ok largely) to blame since I have become quite the accomplished procrastinator when it comes to my homework.  Much of it, ok like 99% of it, is done on Wednesday night right before the deadline.  That is unless there is a predetermined due date for something.  As tiresome as Wednesday nights have become, it works for me and allows me to almost (and I stress almost) forget that I have coursework to do.  Until Wednesday that is.

As of right now I have 2 1/2 courses left.  That fact is a double-edged sword in itself.  On one hand I only have 2 1/2 courses left.  But, on the other hand, I still have 2 1/2 courses left.  Catch my drift?  I used to think I wanted a doctorate of some kind.  I mean, how cool would it be to be Dr. Drosche?  Um, yeah, that idea is long since gone.  I'll be content to go by Master Drosche.  Yes, I said it.  Like I mentioned before, this is all free to me through Trinity.  That fact, and the fact that I am borrowing books from a co-worker who previously got her M.Ed., is more than enough blessing to not complain.  But I don't want to do my homework!  Ugh.  Speaking of, this week is a group project so that's good at least.  I need to get started on reading my portion of a 65 page article.  Instead I decided to vent/whine via blog.  Thanks for listening.  

So, I've had my say and I'm done.  I've gotten it out of my system and am (somewhat) less frustrated.  Ahhhh, I love the therapeutic benefits of blogging.  Thanks for attending my pity party.  Be sure to wrap some cake in foil and take it home with you.  Guess I'd better go get some homework done.   :)

All is well, of course it is, in Drosche Land. 


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sunday Snapshot - Field Day

The pictures for this week come from this year's annual Fun Run & Buddy Field Day at Trinity.  The youngest it goes is Pre-School so Jack won't get to participate until next year.  This year though, was Braeden's 2nd year.  He started off well, then had a mysterious crying spell, but finished his laps and calmed down.  Between Amy and I we got some good shots.  When looking at them though, I can see the big kid I blogged about yesterday!  Wow!  

Run, Braeden, Run!

He loves all kinds of athletics (doesn't get it from me!)

Walking with Amy after the meltdown

I liked this one so much I tweaked it!

Ni Hao Y'all

Saturday, November 13, 2010

You Can't Force Them

To stay young that is.  Yeah, I'm talking about the boys here.  They seem to be rapidly growing before our very eyes.  The title of the post is also a reference to the boys' sudden, and rapidly increasing, infatuation with all things Star Wars.  Gone are the days of cartoons like Clifford, Thomas, and Handy Manny.  Well, maybe not totally gone, but those days are definitely fewer and further between.  Instead we focus on sports, comic book heroes (namely Batman and Spider-Man), NASCAR, and the aforementioned Star Wars.  We are currently 2 episodes into the franchise (IV and V) and will continue to power through the remainder of them each and every Friday night (otherwise known as Drosche Family Movie Night).  Luke Skywalker ("The Skywalker" as Jack calls him), Darth Vader, and light sabers are the dominate topics of discussion around here lately.  Yoda, however, is by far the favored character by both boys.  Very interested in him are they.  Sorry, slipped into Yoda-ese there for a minute.  I am enjoying this though as I loved Star Wars when I was little, so in a way I get to relive a bit of my childhood with them as we train to become Jedi warriors.

On a side note, Amy and I are planning a very Star Wars Christmas in Drosche Land this year.  We are busy planning, researching, and adding many Star Wars themed items to the boys' Christmas lists.  It should make for a Christmas that's out of this galaxy.  Ha!  Get it?!  Well, I thought it was funny.  

So, when did it happen?  Did I blink?  Take too long of a nap?  I'm not sure, but somewhere along the way I traded my babies in for kids.  Big kids.  Most of the time the fact that they are older means more fun.  They understand more and are able to do more.  They have a sense of humor and help out around the house.  However, with big kids comes big attitudes.  And big mouths.  And big fights.  But, for the most part they are awesome.  Just big(er).  Every now and then they forget that they are supposed to be big boys and I glimpse in them the little boys I have become so accustomed to.  Then, the moment is over and I have my big boys back.  I can only imagine that this will continue to be the case as they get older and older and finally break free of my white-knuckled grasp and grow up into adults.  It's inevitable.  For the time being though, I will continue to relish every moment.  Trying to balance out the big boy movies, toys, and video games with some Disney or stuffed animals.  For as long as I'm able to.

All is well, the Force is strong here, in Drosche Land.   

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fair Game

So, you know by now that Amy's Scentsy business is booming and she is loving it!  She has 4 people that have joined under her and they are all doing well also.  Today she made another milestone in her business though, she booked her first conference/fair!  The post title makes sense now huh?  Get it?!  She and a member of her team will be running a booth at the TX District LCMS ECE Conference in January!  She is super excited and I am super proud of her!  

It's funny though because when this new adventure started for her, she was in it just to get some free and discounted product because we are huge Scentsy fans here in Drosche Land.  However, she quickly realized that she actually wanted, and was capable of, much more!  I have to give it to her though, she has done an amazing job!  Who knew that she would be so good in sales?  But then again I have to admit, with her brain for numbers, charts, money, and planning, it really isn't that much of a surprise at all.

So, I'll take another post to brag about my wonderful wife and her latest accomplishment.  Insert shameless plug here!  :)  One more adventure for us to take on and add to our schedules!  But, as I always say, if we weren't so crazy busy we would be bored senseless!  The next couple of months will be filed with exciting planning, ordering, stocking, and preparing for her first show.  That's in addition to the parties and open houses she has scheduled in there too!  I'm sure I'll be blogging about more in order to document every detail about this adventure, and all the other ones we take on in the meantime!

All is well, scentsational in fact, in Drosche Land.  

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Sunday Snapshot - My 30th Birthday!

My birthday brought about some great pictures thanks to my wonderful wife and her great camera!  Below are some of our favorites and some that I have played with a bit.  This was an awesome birthday and in case you didn't know, my wife is AMAZING and I am so lucky!  Thanks Amy, I love you!

Me in all my birthday garb!
 My Chocolate Espresso cupcake from Crave!

 A family picture!
 The boys in front of a fountain at the Riverwalk

Waiting for our boat ride
Braeden on the boat
 Jack on the boat

 The boys and I on the boat

Ni Hao Y'all

Birthday Boy

Well, it's Sunday night and the weekend is winding down.  I guess with it ends my 30th Birthday Extravaganza.  What?  Weren't you referring to this past weekend in the same way?  You know you were!  I have to say it was AWESOME!  But alas, all good things must come to an end.

The fun began Friday on my actual birthday.  Amy was the first to greet me, followed by the boys!  Then it was off to Starbucks for my FREE birthday coffee (a perk of having a registered card and using it lots!)!  At work I found my classroom door decorated and wore some pretty cool birthday accouterments provided by my friends.  Also provided by my friend, tacos from Jack in the Box (yes, you guessed it - 30)!  I still have some in the fridge and am slowly working on them!  Gifts and treats followed throughout the day, ending with dinner with my family at La Finca (our favorite restaurant) and Crave cupcakes (Chocolate Espresso)!

Saturday dawned and with it came my secret birthday getaway present from Amy!  It took me almost the entire trip there to figure out what we were doing.  The surprise?  A trip to the outlet malls in San Marcos to shop for clothes!  Woo hoo!  I love me some shopping, especially for clothes!  I was able to get 3 complete outfits (including shoes)!  I am stoked to start wearing them tomorrow!  After that we went to one of our favorite places - San Antonio.  This was especially fun because we, as usual, stayed on the Riverwalk.  The boys had never really been away on vacation, let alone having stayed in a hotel.  A trip (albeit short due to the boys' interest levels) to the Alamo and dinner outside on the Riverwalk rounded out an excellent day!

This morning it was back home and back to reality.  Sad, but true.  All in all though, it was an incredible birthday, definitely the best ever!  I am extremely lucky to have such an awesome wife, great family, and super friends that helped make turning 29+1 (yes I am still referring to it as that, although slowly opening up to the t-word!) totally fun and worth it.  I'll admit, everyone says the 30's are the best time in your life and I must say, if this birthday was any indication - that is surely going to be the truth!

All is well, so far liking the 30's, in Drosche Land. 

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Trading Up

So, in First Grade one of the biggest Math concepts I teach my kids is trading up.  You know, place value, when you get ten 1's and then they trade up to make one 10.  Well, I'm about to have a real life connection to this concept.  Yes, tomorrow is my birthday!  But it's not just any birthday, it's the big 3-0.  I'm leaving my twenties behind, for good.  A different age bracket, filling in a different bubble on forms.  Call it what you will, I'm there, well almost.  I'm not quite sure how to feel.  For a while I was freaked out by this.  Then I went through an acceptance period where it didn't seem that bad.  Well, now that I am faced with the big date, I'm not quite sure how I feel.  I don't feel 30.  Maybe age is just a number?  Or is that just what old(er) people say when they are unhappy with the result of their trading up?  I also am left wondering what the name for this time in life is called.  I'm not a young adult, nor am I (obviously) in my 20's.  But I definitely don't think I am anywhere near middle-age!  Gasp!  I'd better not be.  So it must be some gray (pun intended) area in life.  This new age, and the fact that just a few nights ago I was actually excited to sit and watch Election 2010 coverage on TV, has me feeling old(er).  I don't feel old(er), yet at least.  I don't have gray hair (trust me, I've been checking).  Wrinkles?  Well, that depends on how you define it.  Laugh lines don't count right?  I mean they are a happy thing.  Maybe that's another gray area.  

Of course I am happy about celebrating my birthday, I love birthdays.  Plus, my wonderful wife Amy has busted her butt (no pun intended!) to prepare a surprise birthday trip this weekend and I am 100% clueless as to what awaits us on Saturday!  I am very excited about it!  All I know is that the 4 of us are taking a trip somewhere and that it will more likely than not lead to some good Sunday Snapshot pictures for this weekend!  Woo hoo!  Also, life is great right now and I am loving it!  I have a fantastic wife, 2 great (if not slightly hyperactive) boys, we are moving closer in to find our dream house, and we are getting into a financially excellent place!   Things can only get better!  So maybe the 30's won't be that bad right?  Well, so long as the gray stays away!

All is well, another decade down, in Drosche Land.      

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

That Bites

Well, I should have posted this last night, but it was crazy around here (read on) and when I finally had the time to sit down and blog I only had the energy for the sitting down part.  Anywho, onto the post.

So, last night was shaping up to be one of those rare, seldom experienced nights when we would be home early with enough time for the boys to play, Amy to cook a dinner, and even squeeze in a little family relaxing time before bath and bedtime.  Even better, the weather was beginning to change and cool off, perfect for the boys to go play out in the back yard.  So out they went to run around, scream, and throw balls; you know the things we try (sometimes (often) unsuccessfully) to keep them from doing inside.  Amy and I were in the kitchen working on dinner and dishes respectively when I heard a scream.  By the time I made it to the back door Braeden was there and said that it was Jack and there were bugs.  I ran into the yard to get him.  There he was half in his car with an army of ants covering his right leg and foot.  I grabbed him up and began to frantically brush the ants off while I ran into the house calling for Amy to turn on the water in the sink.  Too late.  By the time I got him to the sink his foot was already covered with little red welts.  After counting a couple of times throughout the night I have estimated anywhere from 65-70 or so bites covering his toes, foot, and calf.  Amy quickly called the doctor and gave him some Benadryl but we decided, with the encouragement of the on-call nurse, to take him in to the Urgent Care center since he had begun to break out in hives.  By now he had stopped crying and were were in full-force crisis mode as we put the partially cooked dinner away, got shoes on (everyone except for Jack), and jumped in the van.  Long story short he is fine.  The doctor at the Urgent Care center prescribed a steroid cream for him and told us to continue with the Benadryl.  Jack, of course, was fine by now and totally back to himself.  Amy kept him home today though so he could rest his foot since it had swollen and was bound to be somewhat sore.  Although miraculously he hasn't touched his foot at all.  He comments on it occasionally but that's it!

So, another unexpected adventure (and expense) here in Drosche Land.  But all is well now and he will return to school, sans his right shoe.  Despite the craziness that ensued last night, Amy and I are quite proud of ourselves.  Both of us managed to function quite well in the midst of the chaotic emergency and all was handled calmly.  I guess we are getting the hang of this adult thing!  Just in time for my birthday as I prepare to turn 29+1 (I'm still avoiding the t-word).  Who knows, maybe there is hope for us yet!  :)

All is well, more than once bitten and not so shy, in Drosche Land.

Day 1

Day 1 - At the Urgent Care center

 Day 2 - A little blurry but shows the swelling quite well!

    Day 2 - Ouch!