Can you tell that I was loving that cake... and my baby girl, of course! Ashley picked the cake out herself at a local bakery. We usually go for a Costco cake-- very tasty, but so much waste! Those cakes can feed an army! So this year, I splurged a little and got this one. Cute and yummy, but the girls missed their Costco cake-- uggh! Oh well! So on Friday, Ashley is having an "almost sleepover" party. She invited a few girls from her class. The idea is that they will come over in their PJs at 6:00 and "almost" spend the night. Parents will pick them up at 9:00. The idea is that it will be low key-- but with 5 seven year olds, I can't imagine anything will be low key! The only thing I have planned is to paint their nails, have them decorate picture frames, and take a quick picture of each of them with Ashley for the frames. Pizza, popcorn, cupcakes... done! I'll report back later on how it goes!
Oh, and her big present was a week of horseback riding camp! She opened clothes and her face was frownie, she opened the horsie game with the certificate attached and her face was smiley. I don't think she has any idea how lucky she is-- but then again I don't know many 7 year olds that do :)
So does the picture on the left remind you of the baby daddy from Juno? I posted a photo at the bottom-- check it out :) My little nut! He cracks me up everyday! Every headband, hat, and pair of sunglasses he finds-- he puts on his head! I think we really should buy him some manly gear, don't you?
On another note, the girls have officially started softball (even though their last two games have been cancelled due to the weather). Hopefully, I'll get some photos of them playing at their game this weekend.
And a ME fact! I FINALLY joined a gym. Thank you Havalynn :0 One question the personal trainer asked me yesterday was when the last time I had worked out was... and when I told him 12 years ago in college, he seemed a bit surprised. I told him that I would take that as a compliment! It is hard to balance work and family and still manage to take time for yourself. Hopefully, I'll use it 3 times a week or more (my goal) and get a little healthier in the process! I am honestly so sore today that I can barely make it up and down the stairs of my house! And poor Jacob has cried every time I've tried to put him in the kids club there, we'll see how long it takes him to get used to it. It breaks my heart to come back and see his puffy, teary, little eyes :(
This morning I was putting some things away and I found this card. On the front it said "To: Ashley From: Sis". I almost threw it in the garbage thinking that it was just another card that the girls had been playing school with. But I opened it up and here's what it said:
I AM an obsessive reader-- that is why I don't read very often. When I pick up a book and get interested in it, I do NOT put it down until it is done. This applies to a magazine, a 100 page book, or a 1000 page book. It is very frustrating and annoying to all around... so I simply avoid getting interested in a book, if possible... or buy books that don't require a cover to cover read. This is just one of those books. A CRAFT book by one of my favorite fabric designers, Heather Ross. I know that it has a cool PJ bottom pattern, I'm hoping it has a twirly skirt or Apron, too. I'll be sure to post examples as I find a little time to sew them!
My baby boy turned 2 last week! We celebrated with a trip to Chuck E. Cheese's at his request, no less. I had intended to take photos while we were there... apparently I forgot what it was like taking a 2 year old to CEC... my camera did not make it out. I tried to snap a few on my camera phone... but all you can see is a blur! He was too excited. The downside is that he and Hannah ended up with a stomach bug over the weekend. I KNOW it was from that tube thing. Since Jacob doesn't go to daycare and he was the first one to get sick-- that kinda seals the evidence :) And yep, I got sick on Monday-- Ashley and Marc were the only two spared... so far! Marc's still afraid to touch any of the toilet seats!
So... I'll post some photos of the little man soon! For now, this one will have to do ;)
So I have had enough of winter! This is the first time in 33 years that I have felt seriously "blue" during the winter! The snow was great-- didn't get enough, and didn't last long enough... but I love snow. It is just the dreary days leading up to and following the snow that brings me down. This weekend is supposed to be nice, yay! Then next month Marc and I are celebrating our 10th anniversary in Hawaii. That should bring some serious cheer when it is desperately needed!
So passing my time this past week, I decided to learn something new. I learned to knit last year... made a couple hats, then spring and summer came and I let it go for a while. I picked it back up in the fall and have since made a ton of cute things, mostly hats...here's a few (yes, there is more if you can believe it):
Most of the yarn I use is hand-dyed yarn. It's expensive and sold in quantities much greater than what I need for a little hat. So I stumbled upon a tutorial showing how to dye your own yarn with Wilton's Icing Dyes (yes folks, that stuff that you put into food can permanently dye wool-- that is scary-- wonder what it dyes on the way down to your stomach). Ironically Michael's had a 50% off yarn sale that same week... so look what happened:
Now in order to set dye, you have to use vinegar... a lot of it... and heat...so our kitchen smells like a mix of wool and vinegar. Marc says it smells like chicken wings... which in theory isn't so bad. Anyway, I think I have enough to keep me busy for at least another year!
Last Friday, a few of my girlfriends and I celebrated friendship and my studio space... and in honor of Valentine's Day... we put ourselves in front of the camera rather than behind it taking photos of our kids! It was fun... and of course, I couldn't make a serious face to save my life!
This was so much fun for us that I'd love to offer it as part of my studio offerings... so if you know anyone who might want to gather up 5 girlfriends and have a fun evening... let me know :)
Hannah and her 2nd grade class celebrated the Chinese New Year with a singing performance yesterday. It was supposed to be last week, but the snow day delayed it until this week. She was so excited about it and practiced her songs all the time at home. She thinks she will be on American Idol someday :) I didn't get many pictures of her with her Mandarin outfit and chopsticks in her hair... because I had the little guy... I was lucky to get the couple I did, shoot the flip video, and keep him beside me. I kept expecting to see him run out in front of my camera towards the kids. Now that would have been a funny moment! Enjoy :)
Hooray! Hooray! Hooray! The kids stared in disbelief as they rolled out of bed expecting to get ready for school this morning. Hannah was a little disappointed because they were supposed to perform for us this morning a special Chinese New Year musical presentation. Hopefully they'll reschedule! The kids waited and waited for the grass to be covered and when that didn't happen by lunchtime-- they decided they had waited long enough. We set out to play in the snow... but, oh no! The sled was in the attic and I'm too short to reach... so alas they had to wait until Marc got home to get it down. Jacob didn't quite know what to think... he didn't want to go out, didn't want to step in it, didn't want to touch it, didn't want it on his pants, didn't want to sit in it.... but then after a while he didn't want to leave it behind to come inside! I suppose his second time out in the snow might be less drama! Nonetheless, I was able to get some great shots of them goofing off and playing! Here's a few-- they are all posted on my facebook profile! Keep it coming-- the snow, that is!
Jacob and Abigail had a blast running around last Friday when the weather was warm-- I think we were in the mid-50s. They didn't even need coats. Just getting out of the house was a fiasco... but Havalynn saved the day. We made plans to take the kids on a trip to MD to check out a photography shooting location and let them run around outside. I got the girls off to school, and then got Jacob and me ready for a day out... this in and of itself is exhausting... it has only gotten marginally easier since the girls are in school :) The advantage to that, at least, is that it gets us moving early! So we get in the car, get buckled in, Jacob is chanting "Abby, Abby"... and what happens? Nothing--- the car won't start! UGGGH! So tears streaming down the little guy's face, we get out of the car to call Havalynn. She volunteers to drive and off we go. It was a beautiful day, and I really think that this place will be a beautiful backdrop when the weather warms a bit. In the meantime, they have a couple conservatories that are inside. However, we learned the hard way, that children must use inside voices while in the "greenhouse". The kids were having a blast running back and forth across a little bridge, but Ms. Garden lady put a stop to that as she stomped after me (as we were leaving, no less) to ask if I was the mother of the screaming children. As she continued to scold me, it was on the tip of my tongue to tell her that she was almost as friendly as the staff at Meadowlark Gardens in Vienna. Don't get me wrong, I do appreciate the planning, labor, and skill that is required to operate and maintain these county parks. However, I do not understand why every person I've encountered at both aren't nicer to the patrons. I'll save that theory for another post :) On to more beautiful topics... pictures of the kids!
Oh and one last thing to add. I got a giggle when a man and his wife walked by us taking pictures of the kids running across the bridge. It was in the sun, but we were just snapping anyway. Heavens knows if I had gone back to my bag to get my flash, the moment would have been gone! Anyway, the guy must've been a photographer or knew something about photography because I heard him mumble under his breath-- you need some fill light. Yep, we did....oh well :)