Viewing entries tagged

I couldn't imagine my life without...

I couldn't imagine my life without...

My [handsome] husband, duh.
Mommy scares
Sippy cups.
 Dirty socks.
 Dump Trucks.
 Hand-me-down tennis shoes (and mismatched socks)
 Sleepy eyes.
 Spit up.
 Unruly curls

 Top knots.
 [Homemade]Baby food.

To-do lists.
 Baby Gates.
Potty Training.
 Bicycles. [and cool shades]
 Family walks.
 Monkey boys.
 Boobage. aka breastfeeding. aka human cow.

Weenie dawgs.

Sweet boys.

Baby giggles.

What couldn't you imagine your life without?

Welcome to my house..

Welcome to my house,
Where manners are a must.
Where noise is at a maximum,
Where the toilet seat is always up.

Welcome to my crib,
Where we may not have on clothes.
Or we may be in our pajamas,
Or still in our robes.

Welcome to my jungle,
Where little bear cubs run amuck,
The middle one scavenges for food,
While the oldest organizes his trucks.

Welcome to mi casa,
Where my boobs are always out.
Where a baby is probably latched,
Where there's spit-up on the couch.

Welcome to my chaos,
Where there's almost always confusion,
Where mommy is sometimes crying,
Wondering if this is the day she'll get put in an institution.

Welcome to my dungeon,
Where I ruin my kids lives.
Where I make them eat their veggies,
When they'd rather have burgers and fries.

Welcome to my sanctuary,
Where Christ always comes first.
Where we pray before everything,
Where we thank God, even when things are at their worst.

Welcome to my house,
Where we welcome you,
Just bring mommy something,
Like a margarita or two.

-The Banks Mama


Just a glimpse of my silly family.. and my sister makes a cameo :)

-The Banks Mama

A very THOMAS birthday

After Braxton's birthday party, Brayden kept telling us that he did NOT want a birthday party. All he wanted to do was to see Thomas and his friends. Little did he know, Thomas would be visiting Grapevine vintage railroad on the day of his birthday. When he woke up, we had the hallways full of balloons! Here are pictures of his special day. We had a great time. Thanks to all our family and friends who has to almost dedicate every weekend in April to us, and our birthdays! We love yall!!


 Brayden and his BFF, his granddaddy :)

 Thomas is HERE?!
 Over the moon..
He is determined to patent an NFL baby carrier :/

 The conductor said "I better not go on FACEBOOK" haha
Tight Squeeze on the train..
 Mimi, and Jack Jack

If yall only knew how much this kid loves trains!

 Me and my sister stayed up making these cupcakes. Worth it! Brayden loved them!!

Brelands BFF, Mr. Brock-E-Brock. So handsome.

 Oh uncle Chad..

-The Banks Mama

Just one of those days...

Ever had one of those days where you just wanted to throw in the towel? Let me tell ya, today was one of those days. I just wanted to say, REALLY? THIS IS HOW ITS GONNA BE?!!

It was just one thing, after another, after another.

Sometimes, when in the midst of a storm, it's hard to see a way out. I know I am the WORST with foretelling my own fate.

Example: Brayden falls off the bed, and hits his head. Before he lets out his first cry, I've already given him a concussion, with trauma to the brain, and declared that he will never be able to ever bump his head again or he will die instantly...

Or if Brendan doesn't reply to a text fast enough, or answer his phone.. I've already pictured Brendan's corporal showing up at our house to tell me the unfortunate news about him being killed in the line of duty, while rescuing orphans from a burning building during a tornado...

Crazy, huh?

Psalm 112:6-8 says 

Surely the righteous will never be shaken; they will be remembered forever. 

They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the LORD.

Their hearts are secure, they will have no fear; in the end they will look in triumph on their foes.
My foe? Lately has been fear. Why I let it consume me, I don't understand. Some days are good, some days are not so good. Today- not so good. 
I find that God always finds a way to make humor out of certain situations, in such a way, that I KNOW it is Him..
Today, as we do every Wednesday, we went to drop Brayden off at AWANA. As usual, we had Hundsley with us, because while he is at AWANA, the kids and I go to my grandparents house, and eat dinner, and watch American Idol. Hundsley has a play date with my grandmas dog, Pierre. Well, I got out of the car, left it running, with Braxton, Breland, and Hundsley still inside as I ran Brayden in, and ran right back out.I get to the car, the car is locked. The CAR is LOCKED. With my kids inside. RUNNING, on EMPTY. (sh, don't tell Brendan, I didn't have time to get gas) So, I immediately went into normal Jaalisa panic mode.
Brelands going to starve.
Braxton's going to freak out, and be scarred for life.
He'll never want to ride in the car again.
Oh my gosh, what will people think?
I left my kids in the car for 15 seconds.
I'm a terrible mom.
Someone could have driven off with them.
I'm going to be on the news.
Great, and they will interview Brendan at work.
I'll have to join a prison gang.
And learn to play poker so I can win cigarettes.
I'll have to start smoking to look tough. 
I'll get lung cancer.
I'll die in prison.
My headstone will say: Daughter, wife, sister, TERRIBLE mom.
As I'm thinking all this, I notice a guy we used to have bible study with is standing next to my car. I told him what I did, and he laughed, and said his wife had done the same thing, many a times. He lets me use his phone to call Brendan.
As he walks me to my car, Hundsley comes up to the door, and starts barking at him. Then it clicked! HUNDSLEY locked the doors!! She likes to get in the front seat when I get out, and she must have stepped on the lock button! Before I could even finish that sentence, the sweet guy was trying to aggravate Hundsley even more so she would step on the button again! It worked!!
I jerked the door open, gave him a heck of a high five, promised to name my fourth born after him, and drove to the gas station. While there, I was talking to my twin, and we both just had to laugh at the way God reassured me that once again, like always, he had my back.
It's something that I should know. That I DO know, but still sometimes it manages to slip away. I love that God knows me better than I know myself, and He knows how to make me snap back into reality, and leave me in a place where all I can do is thank Him, even when I've had the worst day.

Thank you, for knowing that sometimes for a second, I may lose sight. Thank you for always helping me find my way back. Thank you for loving me, even when I don't trust in you. Thank you. Amen.

-The Banks Mama

Our Thursday

Today,we spent some good old fashioned family time outdoors. That's right, we worked in the yard.
Apparently, the man who owned the home before us, just didn't care about life..or his house for that matter. All of the neighbors have been elated since we've moved in and fixed the yard up! Since it's spring, we are getting ready to plant!! It's the first time we've ever gotten to do this!!

We also have a huge backyard, and we are going to have a vegetable/herb garden. I was so excited getting started today, and that excitement came to a halt as I was pulling up roots. Uhm, hello! Garden snakes, salamanders, snails, and beetle larvae?! It was a little much for me. I had to take a little breather, readjust, and get back at it.

Most of me was sad that I was destroying these poor little animals homes though :/ Hubby made sure to relocate them to an area in the yard that we were not going to till. He loves his softhearted wife so much. Here are some pictures from today. We had so much fun. The boys loved seeing all the little creatures, and we even had lunch in the garage. It was such a gorgeous day. 

I love my family :)

 Hubby says this snake "wasn't that big"..yeah right.

 they were fascinated...

 weeds be gone!!

 I love his crazy cowlick in the front :) My sweet (not so tiny anymore) bubbas

 Braydens newest thing is "no paparazzi" when I take pictures of him. He's hilarious.
 Turkey and cheese for lunch.

 Braxton is in a constant state of consumption..
 Hundsley wasn't allowed outside because she likes to attack our neighbors... their pants legs at least.. she thinks the world is out to get us..
 I also took the time to workout a little.. why won't these last 10 pounds just fall off?.. geez..
 "Hey mom, were you gonna drink this?"
 Brendan trimmed our Lady Banks rose bush! I still freak out every time I look at it.. I will blog about it later if you don't know the meaning behind it..
 caught ya!

 Hubby is going to sweet talk the trash guys in the morning! Hopefully they will take all of this!
creeping on hubs from inside the house.. he may be crying because the front is finally done.. and I still have more projects for him.. or he may be wiping away sweat... whatevs..
 blowing me kisses...
 look at that sexy hardworking man...

And lastly, hubbys favorite meal. Yes, he is aware that he is married to a private chef, but that doesn't change a thing. He will take meatloaf and mac and cheese over any meal, any day. Boo-yow, in yo face.

-The Banks Mama

Braxtons Bayou Party

We have awesome friends and family, thank you for making Braxton's Birthday party stupendous!

-The Banks Mama!

Happy 2nd Birthday Braxton

It's so hard to believe that my baby is 2. It has been a crazy 2 years, there is no one like our Braxton! Happy Birthday sweet boy!

Tummy Time and a Nose Bleed.

Today, we had our first nose bleed. Brayden was running around, playing, and laughing, then that laughter turned to screams and tears. My poor son has his mommys clumsy gene, and he has it baddd. He ran into his bed, and hit his nose. It only bled a little, but I am very sqeemish. Not to blood, but when my babies are hurting it makes me physically hurt, I can feel their pain, and it makes me so sad its almost unbearable. Especially when I didn't see it happen. I replay it in my mind, and it gives me the chills. You would think with 2 little boys, I'd be over this, but not the case. I'm so glad that today was one of hubbys off days, because I would have flipped. While hubby was tending to Brayden, I had to remove myself. I was convinced he had a concussion so hubby told me to leave. (I also tend to over exaggerate)

So, I took Braxton and we did a little tummy time with Breland.

I love moments like these. Just laying on the floor with my sweet babies. Breathing in their freshness, peering into the innocence of their big brown eyes, kissing those chubby cheeks, laughing at their silly sounds, tickling their tummies. It's what life is all about.

Also, here a few pictures of Breland's nursery. It's not finished, I've got a couple more things to do... I just need some drawer pulls for his dressers, and a rug. And yes, his room is BRIGHT! But I love it!

Brayden was okay, just a little bleeding, and it was over. His nose looked swollen to me, but Brendan said it was all in my head. Poor baby. I know eventually with 3 boys, I will look back at this and laugh, because nose bleeds will probably be a regular occurrence in the Banks house!

-The Banks Mama

Braxtons Orange Birthday Brunch

So- last year we decided to do a "birthday brunch" for Braxton. We chose orange, because he was always drawn to that color. He had this little orange bat he constantly carried around!

I am having the hardest time trying to decide what to do this year!! And his bday is only weeks away!

Yikes! I've been so caught up in police graduation madness that I haven't been planning like I usually do!

Here are some pictures from last years, and I hope this years party will be just as neat! Can't believe my baby will be 2!! (photography by HP Photography)


-The Banks Mama

Best $5.00 ever spent!

We went to Walmart today to pick up some prints, and get a couple of other things. Braxton is OBSESSED with balls. (get your laughs out) but he LOVES to play with them (laugh again). When we passed the ball cage, he so sweetly said "BALL?" so, I grabbed two of them. When we got home they immediately wanted to play with them. I parked my van across the driveway, and let them have at it. They had so much fun. It's crazy how something so simple as a big bouncy ball can make them SO happy!! I love watching them have fun together. I love that they are best friends... Here are some pictures I snapped.

He is SO ready to play with his brothers. He laughs at them all day.

Look at this, they double as chairs/exercise balls. haha

we were taking a moment to listen to the train go by.

Braxton REALLY loves trains, if you can't tell.

They also make really good foot rests for mama.

snack break.

Child, Please.

SOMEBODY'S appetite is back.

Mr. Handsome.


Oh, and I still have been doing my 365 love letters, I just haven't had time to edit!

-The Banks Mama

Snapshot Saturday

I would like to start a weekly post called "Snapshot Saturday" I haven't figured out how to make links yet so you can link your own blog, so for now, if you would like, just leave the link your blog in my comments. I look forward to seeing your sweet snapshots!!

Maybe he thought we were going on vacation?
The progression of Braydens smile..



Just Chillin with my bro



The kid loves to eat, and his Ellie

Mommy, I'm on the Jolly Roger!

Yo ho ho!

sweet boy
Eating, what I do best.

my shadow. cool, minus the ruffles that make me look deformed!

My handsome Husband, aka the reason I keep having babies. Yum.

Me- EW. Hubby thinks I'm beautiful!

Front of our house. We love our bulldogs!
If you haven't heard, Hundsley got into a fight. With two cats. And lost. Miserably.. Here is her swollen face the next day. Poor girl.

And sweet baby Breland, who was sleeping inside :) Love that face.

Hope you enjoyed!

-The Banks Mama!

Make him a great boy.


There are so many times when I beat myself up about being too hard on my boys. I make them clean up their own messes, use their manners, address adults as "sir" and "ma am", chew with their mouths closed, and lots of other things.

Way too often, we will go out to eat, or go somewhere with other kids, and people will say, " They are so polite!" or " Your children are so well behaved" and I'm thinking, are they watching the same kids I am?! Sometimes I think they forget everything I teach them, but I guess what we are doing is paying off.

What's crazy to me is that their behavior isn't "the norm" I mean, shouldn't ALL kids say please and thank you? I think that it's only fair to teach your kids skills that they are always going to use as early as you can. It's our jobs as parents to make sure that we raise them the best way possible.

 I'm sure this will be a topic I blog about way too often, so I'm going to ask for feedback. What do you think?

-The Banks Mama

365 love letters, Day 1

I'm starting a project called 365(366) love letters. I follow a blog called Baby Making Machine, and I thought this was a cool idea! Its going to be a challenge to try to get all 3 of them in a picture each day! Look at hers here. I will probably post once a week, with that weeks pictures, and if not, I will put them on my love letters page. Here is day 1.

- The Banks Mama

A lesson learned..

Well, a hard lesson was learned today in the Banks house. Daddy and I helped the boys clean their room today, because it was a little messy. We pulled their toy box out, put toys in their correct homes, and straightened up books.

Whenever a toy is broken, or missing a part, we always throw them away. Usually without the boys knowing, but today, we actually had the boys put the broken toys/torn books in the trash themselves. We wanted them to understand that mommy and daddy's feelings are hurt when they break toys, or tear their books, because they don't appreciate them enough to take care of them. Then we explained that if they can't take care of them, they won't get any new toys. If they can't take care of the ones that they DO have, how could we expect them to take care of new toys?

While this lesson was being learned, it got me thinking. I started thinking about how God feels when we don't appreciate the things that he gives us.

I mean, for one, I have to remind myself that I am a sinner, and I don't deserve what I have. I think that all too often we long for the things that we don't have, without appreciating the things that we DO have. The things that we don't even deserve.

How bad must it hurt God when we complain about our Job? At least you have one...
Or to complain about our old car? At least you have transportation...
Or how our house isn't big enough? At least you have a roof over your head...
Your kids driving you crazy?.. Some people would give up everything they have to just have ONE..

I know that it must hurt Him so bad when I complain. Just like we were telling our boys, if they don't appreciate the toys they have now, why would get them new toys?

I think the same principle applies to me. If I don't fully appreciate everything that God has given me, WHY would he reward me?

This week, I am challenging myself, and my family, to appreciate the little things. When Brayden complains that he has blueberries in his pancakes, I will remind him that some kids don't even have breakfast. When I complain about doing 6 loads of laundry on Monday, I will have to remind myself that some families can't afford clothes...

Will you challenge yourself this week?

-The Banks Mama

Resolution Update

So, recently, I blogged about some of my New Years resolutions. I just wanted to update you guys on where I am...

So, number 1. To be more patient with my kids.

Well, way easier said then done.
We have had a few rough days, and I really have been trying to keep it together, to speak soft, and to try more timeouts than spanking.
Didn't quite  happen. Like today, for example.

We had an awesome morning, went to Toddler Time at the MAC, came home, ate lunch, took naps, woke up, played, laughed, cuddled, and then it came time to make dinner.Well, my baby Braxton. If you didn't know, he acts like we NEVER feed him. ANYTIME I go into the kitchen, he follows me, and if I don't give him something, he FLIPS out. I mean, he almost loses it. So, I handed him a zip lock baggie with cocoa puffs that he had earlier, and a cup of water. He takes it. 5 minutes later, I peek out to check on the baby in his bouncer, and I see my sweet baby Braxton, sitting on the floor, accompanied by his big brother, with a puddle of water next to them, and they are dipping the cocoa puffs in the water (on the floor) and eating them!!!

Now, I didn't lose it, I just made them clean up their own mess.
Hence, Exhibit A

Go back into the kitchen. Take bouillon cubes out, to make chicken broth. Put jar back on counter. Turn around to put jar up, and its gone. Go BACK into the living room, and once again, Braxton, with the help of his brother, have unwrapped half of the cubes in the jar. That's when mommy wasn't so sweet anymore. They both got a swift slap on the butt, and sent to their room. Go back to kitchen, do some things, come back out to check on them in their room, and guess what?.. They aren't in their room. They are in MY room, playing with lotion...

Long story short, they got closed in their room and were instructed not to come out until their daddy got home. And, of course my husband comes home, goes into their room, and I'm waiting to hear cries and whimpers, and I hear... LAUGHING. He is tickling them!

No, hubby didn't get sent to his room, I can't blame him, who wants to walk straight in the house and spank those cute little mischievous faces?..

So, I am TRYING, I promise. It's just hard, and that was only half of ONE day...

But, on an awesome note,
-We have booked our house for Disney! We are going in June for 6 days, with about 3 other families! It's gonna be awesome!!Whoop!
-I have started working out, haven't weighed myself yet, but I'm just glad I'm back at it!
-I practiced my cello TWICE this week! Brayden says "Mommy's "Bio-win" makes boo-tiful music!"
-Hubby and I have started doing devotionals together, and have started to reading a book that takes you through the bible in one year. Awesome.
-I am still taking it day by day, and counting my blessings. I am so so so thankful for this life I live!

-The Banks Mama

Green Eggs and Ham

So Brendan has been reading Green Eggs and Ham to the kids since they were in the womb... Brayden now requests it almost every night, and knows it word for word. Here they are tonight reading it.. seriously, doesn't this just melt your heart?

-The Banks Mama

Another Christmas...

Well, another Christmas has passed. I love Christmas time. I love the smells, the music, the joy in random people you meet, the love, the family, and most importantly, the birth of Jesus Christ, who died for our sins.

This Christmas was a special one for us. This was the first Christmas morning we spent together with just our little family. Every Christmas since we have been married, we have been with our families on Christmas morning. Not that we don't love that too, it was just crazy that it was just us. We woke up at 7am, and actually had to wake the boys up to open their gifts. We recorded it, didn't take any pictures, at all... Brendan and I weren't quite conscious.

After the boys got done opening all their gifts, and were playing with wide eyes, Brendan and I groggily mumbled a "merry Christmas" to each other. Brendan said "Is this how all parents feel on Christmas morning?" We were exhausted the WHOLE day! But, it was totally worth it. As I was going over the video just now, I was just thinking about how our family has grown so much since our first Christmas!!!







We are so so blessed!! Its crazy how much our family has grown!! I can't imagine not having these silly boys!! Merry Christmas, and happy new year!

-The Banks Mama

Jean Alice

Today, we made a visit to see my great grandmother, Jean Alice Humphrey. I tell ya, there ain't a more beautiful 81 year old lady than her. There is nothing more comforting than that smell when you first walk in your great grandmothers house. I love talking to her, and looking around her house, at the old pictures, and antique collectibles. She always manages to tell me to make sure I "have a hat on that babies head or he'll catch the colics"... She will always have a space heater on, and the all the burners on the gas stove burning for extra heat.  It still takes me back when I walk in, expecting to turn the corner and see my great grandfather Alton, in his wheelchair watching TV. He is gone now, but his ramp down to the den is still there, a little reminder that he is still there with us. I love the way her hair is always perfectly curled, and the radiant silver sheen that it has. I always like to get a picture with her and the boys when they are babies.

my grandfather and great grandmother

great grandmother and I
LOVE her hands

I want them to remember her long after she is gone. It makes me sad to one day think that she won't be here to see what kind of men they become, the women they marry, their children, and grand children, and even GREAT grandchildren.

It's sad to think about, but that's life. What makes it better for me is to think that this all would not be possible if it had not been for her. It all started with her, meeting a handsome young man named Alton, falling in love, getting married, and starting a family... It's crazy to think that so much can happen just from two people falling in love....

And now, because Brendan and I fell in love, that we have 3 children to carry on our legacy, and that a piece of us will live on forever...

I am so thankful that she has gotten to see all of her great great grandchildren. Nothing makes me more happy than when she tells me how proud she is of me, and that I have a beautiful family. There really is no better feeling....

Without her,  I wouldn't have 3 beautiful little boys, who light up my life everyday....

and an amazing man who has given me everything I ever wanted, and a life I thought was only imaginable in my wildest dreams....

Thank you Jean Alice! I love you so much!

-The Banks Mama

Oh Christmas Tree...

So last weekend, we put up our Christmas tree! The boys had lots of fun hanging the ornaments, and we had tons of fun rearranging them lol. We also made salt dough ornaments! They didn't come out so great, so I didn't post a picture of the final product, but we had fun making them! It's weird to think that little things like this turn out to be traditions.

One day, our great grand kids will be making salt dough ornaments with their kids!! AH! any who, not much to say tonight, enjoy the pictures!

 handsome guys!

 "I didn't do it"

 "our first Christmas together 2007"
 poor Breland.. we got this as a gift one year

 gotta have a couple o Tech ornaments!
 This was my ornament for Braydens first Christmas, but it is totally relevant now!
 This is Braydens first Christmas ornament, looks JUST like Breland.. scary!
 Painting our ornaments...

and, just a few of tiny bubbas! getting big! 7 weeks today!