Monday, March 29, 2010

Thanks, Papa...

Clearly my father has been saying the phrase "Get your meaty hands off that!" to the girls a lot recently.

Tonight, after grabbing a double handful of Noodly Pasta (as we call it), Lilli responded to my request that she put it down with "Don't worry, Mama! I've got my noodles right here in my meaty hands!"

So yes. Thanks, Papa.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

It's that time of year!

It's Egg Hunt Season!

Due to scheduling of these events, this may be the only one we go to (other than the one on our lanai) this year, but we had a great time!

Lilli, having caught on to the process like a champ last year, proved that she had lost none of her skill, and sprinted ahead of the pack of little kids, and Cleaned Up. There was no egg limit this year, and she took full advantage.

Elizabeth spent a lot longer hunting than Lilli did, since she was searching in more unusual locations, but still ended up with a huge bunch (flock?) of eggs.

The only problem they ran into is that their baskets became too heavy!

What a great day we had! And also, the weather was beautiful today!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Fun with the girls

I had a great day today!

My parents are out of town, and, as you know, my dad watches the girls for me during the day, so I had to take a day and a half off.

Yesterday (the half day), we just went to the grocery store, got drive through food, and took a walk around the neighborhood after they got up from their nap. A nap that I was amazingly productive during.

Today, we really lived it up.

We spent two hours in the toy aisles of Target pushing all the buttons (one of the girls' favorite things to do).

We ate chinese:

We played:
(Elizabeth looking "powerful", having conquered the starfish)

(Lilli looking triumphant)

We ate ice cream:
(Poor Lilli, sweat and her head don't go together so well)

(Elizabeth ate her cone, more than half of Lilli's, and then asked me for a smoothie)
We went to the bookstore.

It was a lovely ladies day! (I finished off the day by getting all of my hair cut off-no, seriously, ALL of it-but that is a story for another day)
I have been told by several SaHM friends that if I was home with them every day I wouldn't find such constant joy in hanging out with these girls, and they're probably right.
But I think it would take a while to wear off.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Uh huh.

Based on her confident "I've got this" expression, I am never letting her near a real one.
That is all.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Just two more...

I can't seem to stop! I've plastered the girls spring photos all over Facebook. First just my top 10, then I couldn't resist adding another 5. And then I want to add these two, but I figure it would seem like I'm fishing for comments on my album. One bump was enough.

So anyway, just two more and then I'll stop.

I love the very proper way that Lilli is sitting in the below picture, even though it isn't one of my favorite shots of her face. She's a little lady. Which makes sense given how many times a day she pretends she's going to the ball with Barbie (yes, she's confusing Disney and Barbie these days). She spends 90% of her home time wearing a tutu or a dress up dress with as many necklaces around her neck as she can carry, a ring on every finger, wearing one Belle light up shoe, and one Cinderella light up shoe and carrying a tea cup in true Lady Gaga style. It is a dazzling display.

She looks quite prim here.

This photo of Elizabeth didn't make my top 10 (or 15), because it is off center (some day I will crop it to my satisfaction), but I love the smile on my pretty little girl's face. She has a sparkle in her eye and looks every inch the happy little person she is.

I have to say, while I have you here, that her reading is coming along extremely well. Sometimes we've actually thought that she has the new books we're reading memorized after one time through sounding out the unfamiliar words, just because she reads them back to us so smoothly. But if you write down all the words on a different sheet of paper and have her read them out of order and out of context without any pictures for clues, she still reads almost all of them smoothly. She sure makes me a proud mama.

And so does Miss Lilli. Any smarts being handed out in our family seem to have been divided pretty evenly, because she has a fine list of skills that bring joy to a mama's heart. Just tonight we were reading together and she was looking at a picture of a trombone, and said "Mama, what kind of instrument is that?" Instrument! She's two! That's a five dollar word in my book. Not a huge thing perhaps, not something super extraordinary, but pretty cool.

Anyway, enough about my young ladies, just humor me and admire their pictures.


Monday, March 22, 2010

The Latest

Ah, my babies....

I love the love.

But in case you're thinking all this love is just for the professional photographer...
Not so.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Say it ain't so!

It's official.

I have my first gray hair.

I know this because I pulled it out for the third time today.

Twice before I saw something super metallic and silver gleaming at me when I looked in the mirror. I couldn't seem to get a good look at it, so I thought I must have something in my hair. The first time was near Christmas, so I actually thought somehow I had gotten tinsel in my hair. I finally realized it WAS a hair and pulled it out for a better look at it, but I couldn't get a read on it. Was it super blond, or was it white? It didn't have any friends up there, so I couldn't figure it out. The second time the glinting thing was much shorter, and when I pulled it out to see it, I still couldn't confirm the color, but I started to suspect what had happened. I've been watching for it to come back for the last month and a half.

It is indeed a gray hair.

But I'm only 30.

I'm calling it platinum blond.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Dreaming of tomatoes....lots and lots of tomatoes...

My garden is fully under way!

I have two planter boxes built and filled with dirt and cow poop, and a master plan for where everything is going to go. I'm so excited I can hardly stand it. I should have taken pictures earlier, because now it's dark.

We would have planted tonight, but we decided to wait until the weekend since it got a little chilly on us.

Next steps are to build the cucumber trellis and to get things in the dirt!

The seeds we started are all sprouted except for the bell peppers, which are taking their time. I may buy a pre-started plant or two to add to the mix since I am impatient and that way I might get a veggie a week or two earlier.

I just can't wait for the tomatoes!

Monday, March 15, 2010

We're only halfway through the month...

And look at all these faces!

We've known we were going to have fun with her since the day we saw her in the comprehensive ultrasound (the one where we learned she would be an Elizabeth and not a Will) and she had the back of one hand dramatically pressed against her forehead.
She never lets us down.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Spin Cycle: Pre-Snog Cog...

More baking. Exhausted by baking. In fact I may take an indefinite hiatus from baking. I can't get the smells of vanilla and chocolate out of my hair, and that isn't a wonderful problem to have like you might think it would be.

In five nights of steady baking (10 different recipes) everything has turned out really well, but tonight one of the recipes I made is wacky, I missed a step somewhere, or I just really don't like the flavor combination. I ended up with really strange cookies, and I can't tell if that is the cookies' fault or if I'm all baked out. It is all for a good cause though.

At any rate, that's not why we're here, we're here for our weekly Spin on the topic of Sprite's Keeper's choice. This week we're Spinning the 6th Sense.

No, not the movie.

I, for one, always know in advance when I'm going to be kissed for the first time.

Hmmmm. I say that like this happens to me regularly these days, but I have been happily married for 8 and a half years, and we were together for a while before that. Just to get that out there. Also, I have a good memory.

So anyway, I'm not talking about the obvious moments BACK IN THE DAY where the young man's lips were 4 inches away from mine and closing fast, that's way too late to count as pre-snogition, that's just like DUH. What are the chances at that point that the gentleman in question is suddenly going to mentally go ABORT, ABORT, and "miss". Well unless of course he's the brother of your boyfriend and thought better of his actions, but how often does THAT happen? Only once to me.

Another pause for a disclaimer, as I now have a Child Who Can Read for the first time in my life, and who knows how soon she will start reading blogs? While I was not otherwise free with my favors, I did go through a period where I was very free with my kisses. It's a long story about a girl who rebelled from a ridiculous phrase involving re-vowed purity of one's lips, which just makes no sense, because what else are you supposed to do with those things? So while I have a hefty amount of first kiss experience with which to claim that I can See the Future in this manner 99.9999% of the time, I have charmingly little else in the way of experiences. So there.

Woooooweeee, having trouble staying focused tonight. SO, back in the day when I was otherwise as pure as the driven snow, naive, innocent as a rose, an entire Sound of Music song personified, I could tell just by the glance the young man gave me that his lips were going to be connecting with mine before the evening was over. Sometimes I greeted this realization with delight, sometimes dread, sometimes utter apathy (but mostly with delight), but I can't think of a time where I have ever not had a good long span of warning before I was kissed. As soon as they knew they were moving in, I knew it too. Which I like, because that is a very lovely feeling to want someone to kiss you and to know that they're going to do it, and have a good long time to anticipate it (even if "a good long time" mean "about 3 minutes")

Completely unrelated to my ability to sense an impending liplock, I also clearly remember every first kiss that has ever come my way. This is the benefit of not spending my high school or college years in an altered state. And of course of extensive journaling. Periodically I like to re-read those journals and sigh a little bit over those moments of anticipation. There are plenty of thrills in an 8 year marriage, but they are of a different variety. There are no "Will he or won't he? Aha! He will! In exactly 45 seconds!" moments anymore, because of COURSE he's going to kiss me, he's going to kiss the heck out me as soon as he catches me.

Well, this has been interesting. Clearly I should not Spin after a long evening of baking. It's like I snorted Pumpkin Pie spice and chocolate covered raisins. Two things that do not go together, especially in cookies.

Two things that do go together though, are Sprite's Keeper and the Spin Cycle. Head on over there and see if anyone managed to make sense out of the 6th sense, because I certainly didn't.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Still baking...

Last night I made 4 dozen chocolate cupcakes.

Tonight I baked two loaves of Coconut Bread and a pan of Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cake Bars, and made a pan of Popcorn bars.

On top of my regular duties.

I'm exhausted.

Yesterday was quite a day in general. A little girl that I've been following in the blog world passed away yesterday morning (she's barely older than my Lilli, it just about killed me), we (with help) built a garden planter box and filled it up with dirt and cow poop ready for planting, and then I baked those cupcakes. And then I didn't want to go to bed because I was waiting to see if a baby I was anxiously waiting on would be born (She was! This morning! Yay!).

So I stayed up too late, and got up early to ice those darn cupcakes. All 48. It is a good thing I'm speedy with a decorating thingy. Possibly the highlight of my day was the French Onion soup from Panera that I had for lunch (hold the cheese and croutons, they just take up space). Other wise I just got through it while yawning a lot. Although sniffing at the things I made tonight was a pretty good part of the day as well. I'm looking forward to quality control examining them in the morning. Not to toot my own horn, but it is very possible that the Peanut Butter etc. etc. Cake Bars will turn out to be one of the most amazing things I have ever baked. Perhaps it isn't smart to try a new recipe when you're holding a mini-bake sale, but I was looking for some variety. I think I picked a good one, because I spent the entire process of baking those darn things drooling.

I may also have decided tonight that I like my Kitchen Aid mixer after all. I've always been sort of anti-stand mixer. I'm sure it stems from my childhood baking with my mom and having to stop and unplug the darn thing every 2 minutes before I was allowed to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Too time consuming. So I generally either mix by hand or with a hand held mixer. Well, tonight I was too tired to use either one, so I threw all my ingredients in the Kitchen Aid, and for some reason it seemed really easy. Perhaps because I didn't unplug it once. Well, not until I put it away. Muhahahahahahaha! So that's another good thing about today.

I'm tempted to take a little piece of that Peanut Butter stuff to bed with me. I don't know if I'm thinking I would have some phenomenal food dream, or if I'd just like to smell it all night, but it is verrrry tempting!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Baking Frenzy! And other Manic Minded Monday topics...

I think I'm too covered in flour and chocolate and other baking odds and ends to successfully blog.

The girls and I are walking this weekend at a Great Strides event to benefit Cystic Fibrosis, in honor of their little friend who was recently diagnosed with the disease. Well, I'm walking, they're riding, but they'll be there!

So this week at work I'm holding a mini-bake sale to raise money for our team. I had fun planning what I wanted to make each day, and fun organizing my supplies, and day one was delightfully successful, but I can see that the execution of this plan might be a little tiring. Still, I just made Raspberry bars and Chocolate Walnut Pretzel Clusters in under 45 minutes, which is great! I just wish I had remembered I was baking tonight, before I had settled into bed with a book and the plan to fall asleep early tonight. I'm not sure how it slipped my mind.

I had to get back up.

In other news, we build the planter boxes for our little garden tomorrow night. I'm very excited to get some things growing! We see sprouts among the seeds we started already. We've got corn (Elizabeth picked that), Sunflowers (Lilli's pick), red tomatoes, yellow tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers. Not a diverse selection, but if those things grow they won't go to waste. Squash and string beans and their friends might be easy to grow, but they'd probably rot on the vines. If I get inspired, I might even hunt up another variety or two of seeds that intrigue me before they actually go in the ground. We'll see.

Ah, so guess what? We thought the DVD player out in the living room was broken, right? About half the time it would play a disc, and the other half it would stutter and refuse to load. So this weekend we went out to get a new one, and came home with a Blu-ray player instead. Hmmm. I'm not sure if that is supposed to be hyphenated. This is new technology to me. Anyway, despite not owning a single blu-ray (?) disc, we now own a player. Which is fine and all, but my dad called me tonight to tell me that he had rescued our old machine from the trash (as is his way) and not only determined that it works great, but solved a mystery. We haven't been able to find a missing library DVD. We had the case, but not the DVD. Can you guess where my dad found Diego's Moonlight Rescue? Yep. I assume I have my children to blame for that. With one DVD jammed up in its works, I'm amazed that the player was able to read any additional discs at all. But it did. This is a story without a conclusion, because I am not sure the fate of the DVD player. Clearly we aren't returning the blu-ray (??) player, as we are already addicted to its ability to upgrade the veiwability of DVDs. But the DVD player is perfectly good. I suspect my dad will claim it as his fee for saving me continued library fines. I guess that's fair.

The young ladies are doing fine, although lately their make believe is so complicated that I don't know how they can keep track of what they're doing. Their favorite adventure at the moment is a mix of "Tinkerbell and the Lost Treasure" and "Barbie-the Magic of the Rainbow", with bits and pieces of almost every other fandom that they have thrown in. And thanks to being madly in love with "Barbie and the Nutcracker", Lilli calls all animated Barbies (no matter which movie she's in) "Clara", which confuses and frustrates Elizabeth who puts a lot of importance on correctly identifying who Barbie is playing in which film, and just how she figures into their made up adventures. Today I just shook my head when Elizabeth dissolved into tears because "Terrence hurt my feelings! He says he isn't my friend any more!", and when I went to confront "Terrence", I was given a long and convoluted explanation of how "Clara" had taken her moonstone and given it to Blaze and the Dancing Princesses. I can't keep up. I'm glad they have each other for this stuff and just want me to read with them or have tea parties. That is more my speed. I can also do general silly stuff, but I'm not so good with a plot. At least not one you have to act out. I tell a mean Princess Lilli and the My Little Ponies story.

I think the sugar exposure has gone to my head, because I'm all over the place tonight.

Regardless, my second wind is gone, so I'm off to bed for real now!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Yay for Lilli!

This is Lilli not being scared to ride the rides at the fair last night.


She rode everything she was tall enough to go on, and loved every second. Apparently all the practice at Disney World did her some good. Just another reason why we should live there, if you ask me. Yes, in the Parks. They have that suite in the castle that we could move right into.


While Elizabeth loves any ride she is allowed to go on, and was joyful the whole evening, she was not quite ready for me to take a picture of her and her sister on the Wiggly Worm. Clearly. Poor little girl. When your mother takes pictures of practically your every breath, plenty of them are bound to be less attractive than others.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Well, on the one hand it means that they're normal...

This afternoon's events can be best illustrated in these three pictures of Lilli:

Lilli: Why are you looking so mad mama?

What? You think that I'm also responsible for the fact that Elizabeth's entire floor is covered with crayoned and markered scribbles and letters, all the crayons are broken in half, and that she and I are decorated in marker from head to toe, all because Papa got on the computer and let us play unsupervised for 45 minutes thinking that the quiet coming from her room was a good thing?

It was all Elizabeth, I swear! I had nothing to do with it, and I am totally innocent! How dare you accuse me of such terrible behavior?

What? You don't buy that? You're still mad? What if I look at you like this?

Still mad?