Life with the Shirley Family

Life with the Shirley Family

Friday, December 23, 2011

Our new pets!

Nathan has been asking for a dog for a long time, and we have been putting him off with excuses like, "wait until after vacation". Well, that started several vacations ago! We are just enjoying the freedom of not having a dog to take care of, especially when we go out of town. But we know the day will come when we will give in and get the boy his dog! To put this off a little longer, however, we did give in a let him get a Leopard Gecko.
To me this is easier than a dog and a lot nicer than a rat! The things kids come to like through science class! He asked for it for Christmas, but it was too late to be put on the Santa list. So we allowed him to buy his gecko with Christmas money he gets from his Aunt and Uncle in CA.

Since Nathan needed room to put his gecko tank, the fish tank was moved to Camden's room. Because it is now his fish tank, he got to redocorate it with a castle and a crab and one new fish with his Christmas money.
It has been an exciting animal filled week at the Shirley house! Thanks Aunt Alice and Uncle Bob!!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


I did something out of my comfort zone this year...I agreed to play the part of Mary in our church's Christmas program. I am not sure how I did with my role, but it turned out to be fun. It also made me think about Mary and her role in the Christmas story. She usually has a big part, especially when she has to hold a real baby and make sure he doesn't cry! And she is honored in many ways, even to the point of worship by some. But tonight I was reading a devotion on Joseph and it gave me pause. Mary did find favor with God and she did accept her responsibility, but after she was pregnant, she really had no choice. But Joseph, he had a choice. Granted when an angel appears to you, it probably is hard to say no! But still, he married a girl that most people thought had cheated on him. He did so because God told him to. He had to have been a strong, godly man. My prayer this night is that my two sons will grow up to trust God and follow God no matter what, just like Joseph.
Elizabeth and Mary
The whole cast, including Joseph!

Monday, December 5, 2011

40 years of magic!!

1971 was a great year!!! Intel produced the first microprocessor chip, Disney World opened, Liberty University was founded, and I was born! What an awesome year to come into the world! You always feel like the year you were born was special, but while we were at Disney on our non-Disney, Disney-like vacation, I was bombarded with how special this year was! Forty years of magic was everywhere! I almost bought a t-shirt with this on it, but didn't really feel like advertising my age. But I did buy a notebook, and a magnet, and bought a pin from Nathan that someone traded him. Oh, and a Christmas ornament!

Other years were noted throughtout our hotel (we stayed at the pop century hotel), but none can compare!

One thing that was neat about the hotel was all of the items that reminded you of different centuries. I especially liked the 70's and 80's.

The Big Wheel...hands down, the best toy I ever had!!

I tried to win one of these phones on the Mickey Mouse name was never drawn :(

My parents still have their 8 track player!!

The Rubik's cube...I never solved that thing...may have moved the stickers around, but never solved it!

My Walkman looked like this! Can you imagine running with one of those today!

I remember when these were the new thing compared to floppy discs!

Two children of the 70's!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Feeling Behind!

I am feeling behind tonight! It is Nov.30 (Oh, yeah, Happy Birthday Dave!!) and I am seeing Christmas lights everywhere and trees in houses and thinking of how the next two weekends are busy and I am getting overwhelmed!!! Why? It is not even December 1! Why do I need to have it all done today?

Well, I don't; but I would like to get the decorating done so I can enjoy it. And I found my book "Why Nativity" already, so maybe I can start that tomorrow and be on time with it. In reality, however, I should probably start at the end so that I could possibly meet in the middle and have read it all!

But since I am behind in what I have wanted to blog since our October trip, I think I will try to start on finishing that!

We took our trip to Florida on Nathan's birthday weekend and his present was a trip to Blizzard Beach! And a special breakfast with Donald and Goofy and Minnie before our Beach day.

Breakfast was fun, but Blizzard Beach was our destination. Nathan was so excited to go on the 12 story drop of a water slide...and somehow he talked me into going also! I am not too fond of heights, so I had to lay down with my eyes closed and push myself off the edge without looking. My heart was pounding and my hands were shaking; even the second time I did it! The only thing open on the way down was my mouth due to my screaming!

Dave and Nathan braved the very intimidating water slide!

The day was lots of fun, especially on the non-wedgie causing slides! Camden could do most everything; and Dave could do all the slides without getting motion sickness! So it was a super fun family day!

We ended our day with another trip to Downtown Disney and dinner at Wolfgang Puck's restaurant. The salmon was delicious!! Just like last year!!!

But I can't end my post without saying a real Happy Birthday to Dave! It is not as big a birthday celebration as last year; only 41 this year! But he is still a pretty awesome 41 year who can still go flying down a 12 story water slide!! Love you Dave!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Happy Birthday Camden!

My baby boy has turned 5 and I don't know how it happened so fast! I am a week behind in telling him Happy Birthday and am so behind in computer work in general because the motherboard on my computer has been acting up! But it is working tonight, so I am determined to get at least one post up tonight!

So this is the post of Camden's birthday present. We took him to Legoland in Florida! This was what Camden had been talking about for months; ever since he started looking at Nathan's Lego magazine this summer. So we decided to take him to Legoland the day after it opened! Although it was a little more expensive than we thought it would be, we had a great day.

The park is geared toward kids up to age 12 and Camden could go on every ride but one. So it was fun to be able to take the whole family on all the rides. Well, except for when Dave couldn't go on rides due to his motion sickness problem.

So here are pictures from Camden's birthday present. I am glad he shared it with us...and if my computer keeps acting right, I will have pictures from his party soon!

Camden loved all the rides!!

My two treasures!

The lego safari!

The lego version of San Fran's crookedest road...

and the Golden Gate Bridge

Camden was eager to meet the pirate!

Dave and Nathan were worn out after a long day!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Happy Birthday Nathan!

My firstborn turned 11 this past Saturday, October 15. I think 11 sounds so much older than 10! He is still my sensitive, caring and giving son, but he is also the boy that is beginning to get embarrassed when I hug him in public! He is also the boy who is very excited that some restaurants will no longer let him order off the kids' menu!

For his birthday this year we took a trip to Florida. In order to have some snacks on the trip, we of course had to get some cookies. I just want to say a big thanks to Stephanie at Cookie Capers. She outdid herself with the creativity in making these one of a kind cookies. They are as tasty as they are beautiful. And Nathan absolutely loved his baseball jersey cookie! I enjoyed the hamburger and fries myself. I am not good at links, but check Cookie Capers out on Facebook if you want some awesome cookies!!

For our vacation, we didn't go to Disney, but it certainly felt like it, sort of. We stayed at a Disney hotel and went to a Disney waterpark and went to Downtown Disney a lot. His actual present was the waterpark day and breakfast with Donald.

But on his actual birthday, we were not in Orlando. We started out the day with pancakes at the hotel in Silver Springs.

Amy and Camden sharing an orange juice moment!

I told Nathan I would make him pancakes for his birthday...all I did was push a button on the pancake machine and they came out!

Nathan opening his card...who's that silly boy in the spotlight!

From there we began our adventure into the natural springs at Juniper Springs state park. We took the nature hike (instead of the 3-5 hr. canoe ride with a 4 and 11 yr old)...

Pictures do not do justice to how clear this water was! The brownish spots is where the springs were bubbling up.

...and then took a dip in the natural pool that is 72 degrees year round. Chilly!! We all jumped in though, although some stayed longer than others!! Even though it was very cold, it was refreshing!

If you look close, you can see them shivering!

Not the clearest picture, but a good shot of Dave diving!

Nathan about to dive in !

After drying off, we got on our way to our final stop...Orlando! After checking in, we ventured Downtown Disney for a birthday dinner at The Rainforest Cafe! Nathan said it was the best thing ever to eat there!

Nathan getting his birthday ice cream and having the staff sing Happy Birthday to him!

He had an awesome actual birthday, and a great trip to Florida. More stories to follow!