August 2014

After our crazy summer, the Dismuke house is ready for some routine with school starting, sorta.  the girls are ready to be back with their friends at school but this momma is definitely not ready for her baby to go to Kindergarten!  Oh my the happy tears are going to be flowing for a while now!  But before Ingram can start school, he has to have one last "Hoorah!!" with his buddies Nolan and Jake at Chick Fil A of course!  These boys were nutty and Madison even got to tag-a-long and see how crazy these littles are!  Needless to say, we had a hard time getting her away from the "mom table" because she just loved listening to our conversations.  Imagine that, a 12-year old girl wanting to sit and listen and talk!

Triple Trouble!  Going To Miss Not Seeing These Three Together On A Daily Basis!


After the girls's first day of school, we headed off to TCBY to celebrate, but during the day, Ingram had the house all to himself since he wasn't starting school for another week!  We played games and made Lego creations, and Ingram even "practiced" snuggling in his rest mat for school.


It's The First Day Of School So I Was Thinking I Would Take A Picture!
Apparently 6:30 AM Is Too Early For Smiles!
What In The World Was I Thinking???

And Apparently So Is 8:30AM!!

But Not At 11AM With This Little Man!

I Finally Had Them Smiling, But Ingram Decided His Spoon Needed To Be In The Picture!

That's More Like It!!!

G-Mommy also came in town to take over the house for the rest of the week because I headed to Vancouver, Canada to attend a conference on Family Centered Care for St. Jude with some other members of the Family Advisory Council.  When Craig dropped me off at the airport, I cried my eyes out because I hadn't left them like this...ever!  I've gone an overnight trip I think twice without them, but this was 5 super long days with no option of getting home in an hour; it took one flight delay, two meals, and three airports before I was even in the right city as my hotel.  And yes, I cried at the hotel too because Craig had flowers waiting for me because he knew how hard going away was going to be on me.  While I was gone for the week, G-Mommy handled everything at home and spoiled Ingram rotten of course, but the girls were at school so what else were they supposed to do??  The girls made it through their first week of school and Daddy survived too so it was all worth it!  The conference itself was amazing and we were able to take ideas from other hospitals who cater to Family Centered Care and also able to give things that St. Jude does that they were interested in.  Even though being in classes from 8-5 was hard every day, seeing how important FCC is to others and to SJ is very energizing!  But then again, so was coming up the terminal seeing my people waiting with the biggest smiles ever!!


Ingram Getting Spoiled By G-Mommy After The Girls Went To School!
She Even Let Him Dress Himself So We'll Just Leave It At That!


First Attempt At FaceTime Was Successful...Except Lindsey Wasn't Home!

I Finally Caught Up With Lindsey On My Second Day!


More Spoiling By G-Mommy...This Time He Chose Red Robin For His Lunch!

And This Was My Lunch...Running Along The Vancouver Harbor!


Finally On The Last Day, I Got To See Them All Together!
It was so good to be back home and see what all kind of trouble happened while I was away.  The girls finished their first week of school and Ingram played every day with G-Mommy until the girls got home.
After A Week Of Not Checking The Mailbox (While I Was Out Of Town), Ingram Got His
"Teacher" Card From Mrs. Taylor While He Was Trying On His New Uniform!

I'm Thinking He's Just A Little Bit Excited About Seeing His Kindergarten Classroom!

Poor Mrs. Taylor...She Has No Idea What's In Store!

"Hey Mom!  Take My First Day Of Real School Picture!"


Like I Said Earlier, She Has No Idea What She's In For With Him!

Saying Bye Before I Start To Cry...And Yes, I Most Certainly Did!

Madison Was Super Excited She Got The First Hug!

And The Second First Day Of School Ice Cream!

Ingram Working On His "Pluses" For Math On His Own.  He Does This Almost Daily So He's  Ready For A Test.
And No, He's Never Had A Test In Math Or Any Other Subject.
He Just Really Likes Math...Just Like His Daddy!
Since Ingram's only in Kindergarten, we still have a lot of time to play instead of do homework.  This was a super fun weekend with fishing, swimming, and ice bucket challenges!  I Think we had soccer too, but these were definitely the highlights!


Swimming With Preschool Buddies After The Ice Bucket Challenge!

Daddy And Mr. Daniel Took The Kids Fishing, Or Really I Guess Mr. Daniel Took His Girls Edie, Sloane,
And Aubrey Fishing And Somehow Daddy, Lindsey, And Ingram Wound Up There Too! And No,
Craig Did Not Touch The Fish Or The Bait Or Anything Icky!

Fishing Got Boring!

Another Ice Bucket Challenge!  Ingram Called Out "Grey And Damiel And Their Dads!"  It Led To A 4-Family
Cookout And Pool Party Where The Kids Outnumbered The Adults 12 to 8 But It Seemed More
Like 50-1 With The Volume Level!

Ingram On Damiel's Shoulders

And Now Madison's Shoulders!

video
Like Father...

video
Like Son!

Now we all know school is fun, but Kindergarten is super fun especially when you're learning how to spell all of your colors...and you get to dress up in those colors every day for two weeks instead of wearing your school uniform!


Ingram Won The "Best Luncher" Award For The Best Behavior At Lunch!
Don't Worry, It Was Only 30 Minutes In The Lunchroom!
This Was Also Blue Day!

Yellow Day At Kindergarten!

Green Day...Yep, Best Green Shirt EVER!!!

He ROARED And Tried To Scare Us For Days With His Little Lion!

Blue Day For Our Buddy Landan.  It's One Of The Realities Of Childhood Cancer.
Today Was Landan's Two Year Angelversary And We, Along With Tons Of Other Friends And Family,
 Honored Landan And His Family By Wearing His Favorite Color...Blue.

"What Was Your Favorite Thing At School Today Ingram?"
"Science...It Was Gross And Fun!"
Also Orange Day!
We made it through Ingram's first couple weeks at school and now it was time to hit the road for Lindsey's first travel soccer tournament to beautiful Birmingham Alabama!  It was a long drive there for sure, but for some reason the kids perked up at 10:30pm when we finally got to the hotel.  That "Be on the field by 7:30am" was very early the next morning!  The girls played 3 hard games in the heat and the rain and the humidity after the rain and won their division.  Ingram and Madison had a blast with all the other siblings and even got to go swimming all by himself since the players couldn't swim during the tournament.


Ingram Was The Only One Allowed In The Pool At The Soccer Tournament And He Was Super Happy!
He Thought This "Pose" Would Make A Really Good Picture.  I Guess We Can Bring It Up At His Wedding??

Ingram Photobombing The First Place Picture!

Instead of driving home after the tournament, we decided to make a little detour since it was Labor Day Weekend!  We had a very emotional month and needed some family time away from phones and sports and everything.  So off to Pickwick we went for one last day on the water...and it was a beautiful day indeed!

Perfection.  I Wish We Could Do This Every Day!


Ingram's Favorite Part Of Kneeboarding...Riding The Wake!

Lindsey Trying To Surf On The Kneeboard...It Didn't Last Long!

Lindsey Unexpectedly Catching Some Air On The Kneeboard!

Madison Getting Air On The Kneeboard!

And On The Wakeboard!


And To Think Both Lindsey And Ingram Used To Be Scared To Tube!
Daddy Flew Them Literally All Over The Lake!


Our Little Pyramid Of Craziness!

This month was an especially a difficult one in our world of Cancer.  One of our friends from St. Jude, with our same tumor, died after battling Ependymoma for several years.  We had to tell each of the kids that news after school.  And they were very upset and we had to talk about it for a while.  One of our teacher's husband, who also had Ependymoma and was diagnosed the same time Ingram was diagnosed, died from Ependymoma.  We had to tell our kids.  A grandchild of one of the girls teachers was diagnosed with a tumor and because a patient of St. Jude.  We told the kids that too after school.  Then a student at our school was diagnosed with a tumor.  A brain tumor.  Just like us with surgery at Lebonheur then becoming a patient at St. Jude.  And we had to tell our kids.  All of this was within a 10 day period at towards the end of the month.  Cancer is not fun.  It does not feel rare to us when we see it on a daily basis.  Cancer sucks and this is the only time we use that "S" word.  Childhood Cancer really really sucks.


And we need your help to spread the word about childhood cancer.  





Jumping July 2014

We started off July with a bang and kept going all month long!  Ingram's buddy Nolan came over with his family to swim and cookout one night and it was a super fun night for all of us.  Ingram, Nolan, and Aiden had a blast swimming and at one point Ingram said "No Girls Allowed!" since Madison was at camp and Lindsey was at soccer.  It was definitely a boys night with cannon balls, Pokemon and Digimon card games, Wii games, and running around all night without shirts!

There's Nothing Like Playing Pokemon And Digimon Cards With Three Boys Who All Want To Win!


"It Was Like The Best Night Ever, Daddy!"


Next up G-Mommy, G-Daddy, and Grandmother drove in from Texas to spend the 4th of July with us!  Lindsey and Ingram got a little special attention and had lots of fun doing projects with them at the house and taking them to the Fireworks.  Personally, I think going on the boat was their favorite thing because they got to see G-Daddy and G-Mommy on skis and Ingram and Lindsey showed them all sorts of Kneeboarding stunts!  Madison missed it but she was having her own set of fun at Kanakuk!


Ingram Loves The Fireworks, But...


...I Think He Loves Hanging With Daniel And Grey Even More...
Especially When They Get To Sit On Top Of Mrs. Shanda's Suburban!!!


Can't Leave Out Our Girls!! They Were The Entertainment Before The Fireworks Started!!


Puzzles Ang Painting With Grandmother, G-Mommy, and G-Daddy!


"Yeah Baby!  I Love Kneeboarding!!!"

Ingram And Lindsey Are Too Funny!!!  They Still Can't Believe Their
G-Mommy And G-Daddy Know How To Ski!


Heads Up!!! Ingram's Driving Down The Tom Biggbee!


Wishing Madison Was With Us Too!!


But She's Having Lots Of Fun At Kanakuk...

...With Her Crazy Cabin Crew!!

Ingram also got to do another camp and has claimed (at least for this week) that tennis is his favorite sport!  He had so much fun even despite how hot it was.  I think one day his face was as red as a tomato and his hair looked soaking wet from the sweat.  Wimbleton, here comes Ingram!


Wearing His "Golf" Visor To Tennis Camp.  Pretty Normal For Him Since He Wore
His Baseball Jersey To Soccer Camp.  We Just Can't Keep All Of Our Sports Right!


Poor Ingram...It's Way Too Hot For All That Hair!


So Against Better Judgment, Ingram Got A "Short" Haircut!

Finally it was time to pick Madison up from Kanakuk and we were so excited!!!  The road trip up was great but for the last two hours, I think we all were very close to getting carsick because we went on backroads because of construction up and down and around the mountains.   Even Craig was turning green and that never happens!  Madison was so glad to see us and the kids were just as excited to see each other as we were to see them.  We had fun over the next few hours with her and all her Kanakuk friends, but had an long trip home on Saturday.  Madison was so glad to sleep in her bed after three weeks of being gone; she was even excited to see Beau which rarely happens!



Someone Was Soooo Happy To See Us!


Put This Into Memory!!!  As Much As They Love Each Other, These Kind Of Smiles
Don't Appear Often Enough!  These Two Definitely Missed Each Other!  I Don't Think
Anything Could Get In Between That Hug!!


She Couldn't Get Enough Of Ingram During K-Life!


Testing Out Madison's Top Bunk And He Says "I Want A Top Bunk
When I Go To Kanakuk Next Summer!  "WHAT????
Mommy Is SOOOOOO Not Ready For That!


Playing Cards On The Long Trip Home!  The Only Thing Missing Here Is Beau!!


We had a surprise package from a friend with Relay for Life that lives in Abu Dabi that was definitely one of a kind!  She sent us Camel's from her Build-A-Bear in the Middle East and the kids got to go to our Build-A-Bear and fill up with loving!  Ingram and Lindsey couldn't wait till Madison was back so they went ahead and filled theirs without her.  It was so fun telling our story to the Build-A-Bear people about how we got a hold of the camels and they were so excited too because they had never seen the camels either.


Build-A-Bear Never Gets Old For These Two!  It's A Good Thing Build-A-Bear Is a St. Jude Supporter!


One Happy Little Dude With A Soft And Squishy Camel!


Once we were back home and somewhat settled, we had more fun!  One of our St. Jude family friends came over and we all had a super fun time cooking out and playing games...IN THE DARK!!!  Not exactly by choice, but we made the best of it when a huge storm came through and knocked out power for about 16 hours.  We also had Mimi, Pops, Brett over to spend the night and Lindsey brought a friend home from soccer practice to spend the night too!  I do think it was one of the most fun dinner parties we've had...S'mores by candlelight, lots of noise by all the kids, and of course Beau was trying to get a little friendly with many new legs that night!  The prize however goes to Reid's mom Amy for passing along an "straw/arm tooting" trick to Ingram that our favorite nurse Pam had taught Reid.


Ingram, Reid, And Reid's Dad Lance All Smiles!  Thumbs Up For  A Camera Flash!


And Here's His Mom Amy!  Queen Of The Straw/Arm Poots Thanks To Pam At SJ!


S'mores By Candlelight!


Way Too Hot To Sleep Upstairs!  Nighttime Rowdiness Brought To You By Brett,
Lindsey, Maia, And Ingram!  Poor Mimi And Pops...They Were In There Too!


Mr. Aaron and Mrs. Erin moved back from China this month and Mr. Aaron stayed with us while he was in town and the kids were soooo excited to see him!  We had dinner (but it wasn't Mr. Aaron's favorite taco dinner and Daddy reminded me of that) and swam and played Wii with Mr. Aaron until the kids had to go to bed.


Mr. Aaron Enjoying The Water Again With The Kids!


Ingram Is So Excited To Have Mr. Aaron Back In The States!


We surprised Daddy with a "Happy Heart" cookie cake to celebrate his 7 years post Open Heart surgery!  I'm pretty sure he wasn't expecting it, but the kids were soooo excited to pull one over on him.  Ingram wasn't even born when Daddy had surgery so Lindsey was telling him all about it.  I think we're the luckiest family in the world to have God as our Healer for both of our guys!



This Is Daddy The Night Before Open Heart Surgery On The Left.
And Again Four Days Post Surgery Once We Were Back Home On The Right!
God Is Sooooo Good!


These Two Picked Out The Cookie Cake Since It's Daddy's Favorite! 
Funny Thing Is These Two Devoured The First Two Slices!


We spent the end of the month at the beach with the family...and I'm not just talking about the 5 of us; we went with Mimi and Pops, Amye and Len, Carley, and Brett, and all of us!  We had a great week in Perdido Key and the kids all had the best time at the beach, at the pool, and everywhere in between!  There were definitely some hi lights of the week that include the Fire Department (TWICE!!), two anniversary dinners, banana boats and para-sailing, piles and piles of sand, dancing with lots of college girls (don't worry, it was Ingram and Brett!!), a foam machine, racing go carts, bumper boats, and the Skycoaster!



Even Though We're On Vacation, There's No Vacation For Our Girls From Soccer!
These Boys Had No Idea What Happened When The Girls Schooled Them In Soccer!


Ingram However Was Taking It Easy In The Sand!


Our Fab Five Hitting The Waves!  And Yes, Ingram Kept Up With Them The Whole Time!!

Uh Yeah...This Happened The First Night We Had A Family Dinner At The Condo!  The Siren Was So Loud And Lasted FOREVER..."Warning, Warning: An Incident Has Been Reported In The Building.  Please Cease Operations
And Exit The Building Immediately!!  Warning, Warning!"  I'm Not Naming Names
Or Anything, But Amye And Len Were In Charge Of Dinner That Night!
That Is How We Make Our Presence Know On Vacation!


Poor Guys, They Looked So Bummed When it Was Just A Grease Fire Of Sorts, But Then They
Let All The Gazillion Kids Who Were Evacuated Screaming And Crying And In The Heat
For An Hour Look At The Firetruck And All Their Equipment!


Ingram Learning The Art Of Massive Sand Pyramids From Our Beach Buddies From Lake Charles, Louisiana!


Playing It Safe By Heading Out To Dinner At Tacky Jacks!


Ingram And Brett Having A Sleepover In A Not-So-Stinky-From The Smoke Bedroom!


Ingram Playing Baseball With Daddy!  We Also Had Our Lacrosse Sticks, Frisbees, Footballs,
Soccer Balls, And Daddy Made The Best Obstacle Course Ever On The Beach!


The Courageous Crew!  Daddy Set It All Up For Us And We Had A Ton Of Fun!
Madison, Lindsey, And Carley Parasailed And We Rode The Banana Boat With The Boys!




These Three LOVED Flying High Above The Water And Were Flipping And Floundering The Whole Time!

I'm Pretty Sure From This Picture Right Off The Boat That They Had A Blast Parasailing!!


Ingram Had The Smart Idea With His Goggles!  And We Thought Daddy Drove The Boat Fast When The Girls Were Tubing; This Guy Made Daddy Look Like An Angel At The Steering Wheel!


Best Week Ever!


Yep, We Did This Too!  It Seems Like A Necessity When We're Finally All In One Place!
I Think The Wind Was Blowing The Hardest This Afternoon, But We Made The Best Of It!


What Better Way To Celebrate 48 Years Of Marriage This Week Than With The Kids!  


Picture Can Be Hard Enough With These Two, But The Wind Just Made It Way More Fun!


Like I Said...They're Comedians!


Comedians Who All Love Each Other More Than We Know...


...But There's Always A Competition Even In The Middle Of Taking Big Family Pictures!




Ingram And Brett With All Their College Girls After Dancing For Them For About Half An Hour!


Oh Yeah,  They Were Loving It...


We Will Have To Remind Them Of This Night When They're Older!


Two Little Dudes Taking Over The Dance Floor And Getting The Party Started!


Foam Party For The Kids At The Hangout!


Since We Had So Much Fun With The Firemen Our First Night...
"I didn't mean to pull the fire alarm at The Hangout. I'd just never seen one of
those and it looks like it's supposed to be pulled!"


All Tuckered Out After A Super Long Fun Night At The Hangout.  I Mean, He Did Have A Foam Party With Tons Of Kids, A Dance Party With Tons Of College Girls, And Another Fire Department Incident!



These BRAVE Souls Waiting In Line For The Sky Coaster!


And This Little Dude (And About 10 Other People) Went Nuts Squirting Me In The Bumper Boats!
We Seriously Were Soaked From Head To Toe With Obviously No Waterproof Mascara In Sight!!


"Are You Sure About This?" As Madison And Lindsey Are Getting Hooked In!!


Madison Is Smiling Already But I Don't Think Lindsey Is Smiling Just Yet!


Carley And Brett Going Up For Their Turn!


Little Man Driving His Very Own Race Car...Daddy's Lucky Number 2!


"But Daddy, I NEED Dollars To Get A Snow Cone.  It's Hot Out Here!"


From Day One To Day Seven, We Knew Exactly Where To Find These To Characters!


The Kids Spotted One Of Out Major Donors...Sewell Cars...And Had Us Take Their Picture.
Poor Thing, I Think Peanut's Sunburn/Exhaustion Kicked In At Dinner!

Once we were back in town, we had two more big events happen...Craig turned 40 and Ingram lost his first tooth!  Unfortunately, I gave myself the "worst wife" award because I didn't have any special plans to celebrate Craig's big day and then wrapped him our new curtains (that came in that day also) for his present.  Lucky for me, he still loves me anyway!  While we were at the dentist for Madison and Lindsey, Ingram decided it was time for his "wiggle" to come out and so he really started working on it.  Our dentist gave him a little of the numbing gel to rub on it and the next thing we knew, it didn't hurt when Ingram was flinging it back and forth.  He was sooooo excited when it came out and was showing everyone at the dentist office and telling everyone the rest of the day everywhere we went!


Happy 40th To The Hottest Husband And The Best Daddy Ever!


At Least The Sign Counted For Something, Right???


Hard At Work!


Success!! Making History At Dr. Floriani's Office!


Jackpot!!!  This Is How The Tooth Fairy Rolls In The Dismuke House With The First Tooth!


As fun as July was for our family, it really made me think of our friends who can't celebrate with all the kids in their families.  We're also approaching the beginning of a new era with Ingram starting Kindergarten in August and some of our dearest St. Jude families were supposed to be getting ready for school this year too with their sweet kids and they can't.  As you look at your families and at other families and see how perfect everything is, please remember those families that don't look the same anymore because a family member is missing.  Please continue to pray for everyone affected by Cancer, whether it's a child or an adult, because it's a hard journey for everyone.