Loving Like There's No Tomorrow
The 4 B's ~ Established 17 November 2001

Monday, April 21, 2014

A Happy, Blessed Easter

It may have been a bit "last minute," but hey! We got them done! I managed to get the eggs boiled Good Friday morning, and the little B's had a great time coloring them that evening. As usual, they turned out great! More importantly, they had a really good time working on them.
Once again, the Easter Bunny found us! Britt set the eggs and Easter baskets out by the front door, and while we were gone on Saturday, that tricky bunny came and got them! And on Easter Sunday, we found them returned, full of goodies! We went to the early mass, so we checked out the baskets beforehand, but saved the egg hunt for afterwards. We enjoyed a delicious Easter breakfast after mass, and when we got home, the sun was shining and it was perfect weather for a delightful egg hunt!
Ready for Easter Sunday mass...
The nice church shoes got exchanged for their rubber boots. Egg hunting is serious business!
There was a little rivalry, this year, but all in good fun. They each found plenty of eggs and were laughing and having a great time searching for them. No fighting our pouting or anything but love! That is actually pretty standard for these two, believe it or not. They are best friends!
After enjoying the new Legos from the Easter Bunny, it was time for a little Sunday afternoon ride. Brady made a platform for the roping dummy, and he and Brailey had a big time roping it! Above he is explaining to her how to hold her rope and reins. This is the only the second time she has swung a rope off her horse, and the first time she tried roping the dummy (off her horse). She caught twice! Sadly, I filmed every loop but the two she caught - isn't that the way it goes? Britt even threw a loop off of Alvin, who stood there at perfect attention for him! Brailey and Tex really dig the roping - she was thrilled to be loping around, swinging her rope. She's always been a natural at it, and it was super fun to watch. Britt needs a weensy bit more practice, and he will be right there with his big sister. However, nobody enjoyed it more than Brady!
All in all, it was a wonderful Easter Sunday, full of many blessings and celebration. Mass was special, the sunshine was out, and we were all together. A happy, blessed Easter indeed!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The Big Visit - Grandma and Papa Come to the Valley

It was a long overdue visit, and we were all HAPPY-HAPPY-HAPPY and super excited to see my parents this past weekend. (I'm so thrilled Brailey wasn't "too cool" to wear our matching shirts on Friday - she's such a fun kid!) We had a packed weekend full of very early mornings, horses and volleyball, and it was a wonderful, special time. We even prolonged the fun and added an extra day onto the weekend - we were so tired, we opted to play hooky on Monday and spent an extra day with them. 
Papa is famous for putting Tex's tail into a "mustache knot." Tex was not impressed. He looked at Papa as if to say, "Really? You're still at it? This is getting really old!" But Papa got a big kick out of it, as you can see by the look on his face in the picture above.
We were at another WHO Show on Saturday, the first one we've been to in Roseburg. It was a small show, which was nice, because it went faster than usual. Alvin thought he needed to have a bite of Brailey's donut in the picture above. It was a bit of a rough day for Brailey - we are still trying to figure out bits and reins and legs and the whole nine yards, but she is going to a barrel clinic soon, and that will help things out. Not to mention we haven't been able to practice at all, which doesn't inspire confidence. So we are going to take a break until we can really focus on riding. It won't be long - summer is almost  here!
Alvin was the Star of the Day. He took such perfect care of Britt and really did a nice job. Grandma had to give him some love - the horse just insists upon it! He loves attention.
And Britt was the Pee Wee Champion for the day! Granted, it was a small class, and he did have a mishap during the Figure 8 (forgot the pattern). But he and Alvin rallied and came away with top honors and a dollar bill! It was super cute, because Britt knew it was an easy class, but it was still good for his ego, because he's never won anything! So Brady called him "Champ" for the rest of the weekend, and Britt basked in the glory of winning.
And then we went to Salem for volleyball on Sunday. Generally, our tournaments have been over by 3 or 4 in the afternoon. But not this one. This one went from 8 in the morning until 6 in the evening! LONG DAY! But it was a great day - Brailey played really, really well and so did her team. They have never looked better!
Brady enjoyed his new "Volleyball Chair." It is like a recliner and super comfortable!
Britt had homework to do - rewriting a story. Lucky for him, Grandma was there to help. Interestingly enough, he listens much better to her than to his mother... Go figure!
Papa stole Brady's Volleyball Chair for a bit.
Britt the photo-bomber...! Still a great picture of Brailey and Grandma, though.
Papa was very impressed with Rick, Brailey's coach. He took a moment to tell him what a good job he is doing. We had the loudest cheering section at the entire tournament! Papa saw what the team needed right off the bat - enthusiasm!
The Volleyball Chair is so comfortable, Brady even managed to get a nap in between games!
Brailey managed to sneak a turn on it, as well. She and her good friends were having a wonderful time discussing all manner of things. They are good buddies, and it has been so great to see Brailey make new friends who are nice girls.
The setter! She did a great job all day long. Her team played really, really well, and we are all so proud of them! We also had a wonderful time with Grandma and Papa. On Monday, we managed to hit St. Vinny's, get all the stalls cleaned, get the vehicles washed and my mom even got all the cobwebs off the side of my house and the patio swept! We didn't do much but visit, but it was a great day, full of sunshine and love. We hated to see them go, but hopefully it won't be so long between visits. Seven and half months is TOO LONG. Anyway, back to the grindstone! It's a busy, busy life, but a good one. It was great to take a day to stop and "smell the roses," and to just BE.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Spring Break, Spring Fever

It was unseasonably warm at the beginning of Spring Break this year. So warm, in fact, the two besties pictured above, "For" and "Sale" (also known as Sadie and Boomer), got to tromp around in the luscious green grass for a couple of hours. They were in heaven! We are not the smartest equine owners on the planet. We've been, literally, too busy to get them sold. So instead? We've poured hundreds of dollars of feed into them all winter long. What can we say? We are attached to them, it is true. But we don't exactly need them. And then there is the weird economy where horses you want to buy cost a fortune, but if you want to sell them, you practically have to give them away. However, these two are worthy of their oats, and the perfect home will come along for them when it is meant to. In any case, they were happy horses to experience some freedom.
Spring Break 2014 was filled great weather and happy times! To start off the fun, one night the two little B's disappeared for a while, then, The Jokers emerged! Brailey was practicing her makeup skills.
We even enjoyed some four-wheeler time. It was truly gorgeous weather!
Brady and his precious Mag-Doll, and Brailey Shaye and her baby, Texi-Man. Notice Maggie "photo bombed" them. I think she did it on purpose!
And there is Rose, right in the way. See what shadow she is in? Perfect spot to rest, don't you think?
Then the rain started. But never fear! Britt made special invitations for a Nerf Gun War. It was Britt and Brady against Brailey and I. And guess what? Brailey and I won! The first day, that is. The boys won the second day. At least that is what Brady and Britt think. Brailey and I think they CHEATED...! Note the special outfits required for such a battle. Yes, Brailey in HIGH HEELS, and Britt with a HEADLAMP on his head.
And the Nerf War wasn't the only event we were invited to. At the end of the week, we were invited to a Fashion Competition from Brailey. She made beautiful invitations and even had a crown and trophy for the winner. She gave us the category, and we had to come up with an outfit in 60 seconds. Above is Brady's ensemble for "The Red Carpet." Can you believe he WON?! Yes, Brady was declared the winner of the event. To tell you the truth, he deserved it. He did a nice job!
Then, back to school and routine. That means swimming and volleyball practices, but no play practice. And so we headed north to St. Helen's for the weekend and Brailey played in a volleyball tournament. It was a ton of fun!
Brailey and Ciaragh - they have become good friends! They are both Catholic and seem to have a nice connection with each other.
She is overhand serving, now, which has been a goal all season long. She injured herself back in the fall, and has just recently been able to recover her strength.
Brailey loves spiking the ball and wants to be a hitter when she gets older. I tried to capture her in action during warm ups, when I actually knew she was going to be hitting the ball.
Britt and his friend Conner - they played with Legos nearly all day long! Conner is Ciaragh's little brother.
Only six girls were at the tournament, so lots of playing time! We have an additional coach, now, and he is a former player himself - he used to play professionally. So he knows a thing or two about volleyball, and he is so positive and fun and helpful to the girls. What a blessing!
And here she is, number 12! She gets to play again this weekend, and we are really looking forward to it! She's come a long way and still loves the game, which is great news for me, because I can continue to live my dream through her. And there you have it! The past couple of weeks in the Life and Times of The 4 B's!