Tuesday, June 22, 2010

2 down, 18 to go

At least this one came out at home...and with just the swipe of a toothbrush.

Daddy missed the event again, but got to play tooth fairy when he got home.

And since there were no complaints of bears this morning, I think he has found himself yet another role around here.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Father's Day Weekend

After a long week of teaching VBS and wrapping up swim lessons I was really looking forward to Father's Day weekend myself. Typically when a holiday falls on a Sunday it means that Jerry doesn't have any meetings--a rare and special treat. Getting to ride together and sit together at service as well as having his help getting the girls in and out of church is a bonus too.

We celebrated his dad Friday with a train ride to the zoo for a special evening event and a big homemade breakfast the next morning.

My dad is in Canada, which left Sunday completely to celebrate my Jerry.

It started with snuggles from his girlies and then it was off to church.

We grabbed lunch at a new-to-us burger joint which happened to be on a trolley stop.

So we rode the trolley to the end of it's line which was downtown.

Walked a couple of blocks and ended up at the base of this building.

At which point my camera battery died (all little pics from cell phone), but not before snapping this pic of my 3 favorite people.

I don't think I could have imagined a more perfect impromptu afternoon. Especially not 12 years ago when Jerry proposed to me exactly 57 floors above this perfect fountain spot.

I definitely wouldn't have envisioned how needed our afternoon nap would be or that the evening movie choice would be Toy Story 3.

What I did know then was that if a restaurant wasn't busy on Father's Day when everything around it was on a 30-45 minute wait, that you should definitely stay away. Far, far, away. But then again, what I didn't know then was how skewed your thinking can become when you have two hungry children and it is nearing bedtime. (and you don't feel like cooking!)

That restaurant choice, which shall remain nameless and NEVER, EVER, EVER visited again, is the very reason you are getting a Father's Day post today and not on the actual day. You know that feeling of food that is sitting in your stomach but not digesting. Yes. That is the feeling I went to bed with last night.

And in our Daddy's truest form, Jerry bathed and put the girls down for me on a night I was hoping he could put his feet up and take a well deserved rest. Instead it was me who was laying on the couch trying to get in any position that wouldn't further my indigestion pains...subtle reminders of a dinner gone very wrong.

A yucky way to end an otherwise perfect weekend.

Hoping yours started and ended well!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Jade: Sailor Girl Dance Recital

Our littlest dancer made her debut on stage last weekend.

I didn't get any decent video to share with you, but it was a hoot.

She did a ballet routine first, during which she proceeded to stand there politely with her hands over her ears. The look on her face was one of, "It is way too loud, would someone TURN IT DOWN?".

The dance studio had really nickel and dimed us through the whole recital thing. Making us buy tickets and pay for programs, in addition to recital and costume fees.

So it was pretty funny when after her first routine my dad sad, "Well, that alone was worth the five dollars!"

I managed to talk to her during the intermission when I went to change her tights and shoes. I told her that the music would also be loud during her tap routine, but to try to enjoy it and do the dance.

Well sure enough, she didn't cover her ears and tried to participate a bit more.

At one point she got so into it that when she did a step she knocked herself over and went behind a couple of dancers over.

It was then that we decided the tickets would have been worth $10!

Actually I wouldn't have missed it no matter what the cost was, but whew! After two recitals in a matter of weeks, I am ready for a SEA CRUISE now!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Orangi, Orangi, Orangi, oh how we will miss you sweet kittie!

Rescued with your sweet brothers at which now seems like a time way too short ago.

Bottle fed and cared for (and photographed) by your new family and their crazy kids.

Kids that adored you most. Chosen by Lily to be her first pet.

You started out so tiny at 4 weeks of age.

And were still so petite at 10 months.

Lily loved giving you "stinky" food and watching you grow.

And though she thinks it was a secret between the two of you, I saw those table scraps get handed down too.

So smart, so patient, so unbelievably willing to put up with whatever Lily's schemes were for the day.

Sometimes dress up...

Sometimes a dip in the pool...

Sometimes you were one of her babies...

And just like these pictures indicate, you were up for whatever adventure Lily chose for you...even falling asleep in the cradle.

You will be missed. So many tears shed already and I fear many more to come.

Rest in peace dear Orangi.

***Last Tuesday we found it odd that Orangi didn't come to the door first thing. Usually if she doesn't come in with Blackie, she is just at the other door. We checked the front door with no luck. It was then that I remembered getting an odd call/voicemail very early that morning. I decided I better listen to the message. No details, just a name and a number. When I returned the call, the lady who answered broke into tears. I knew it wasn't good. She had hit Orangi on her way to work that morning. Breaking the news to Lily was heartbreaking. She cried and cried and cried and I did too.***

Watch out Blackie! You don't even know what you are in for...your sister took the brunt of Lily's schemes for the past 9 months. RUN! HIDE! SEEK COVER!

But please, NOT into the street.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Sno Cones gone wrong...very wrong!

This week started out with the girls' first ever joint swim lessons.

See, here they are before...excited and very cute I might add.

And here they are afterward...they survived and Jade already has candy in hand. So fun.

And even though Jade declares she didn't like the "switching" of teachers at the beginning of this video, and Lily isn't fond of the "no spitting" rule (can you imagine!?!), it seems they are content to continue with lessons.

I was pretty proud of them for doing so well considering the many tears, hours and dollars dropped on Lily's lessons last summer and the fact that Jade has never had lessons at all.

On the way home I spied a sno-cone shop that 1) looked worthy of trying and 2) had a drive through. Feeling that they deserved a treat for being brave during swim lessons, we pulled up and ordered a rainbow of syrup covered ice crystals.

Soon after pulling away, Lily reminded me that we're in a rental and shouldn't be eating/spilling in it. Just a week after our accident, I've apparently gotten pretty used to sporting our little Jeep. By looking at the coffee cups, various receipts, and fast food bags that now line the interior, I'd say we've pretty much made it home. Why not? After being hit by an illegal immigrant with questionable insurance, might as well enjoy the rental. It's sort of like throwing towels on the hotel room floor to me.

Lily had a point though...stains in a rental? That is a whole other issue. Lily exhibited self control by deciding not to eat her sno-cone until we got home. Jade and I, on the other hand, dug right in. All was well. Jade is a neat eater, and I am a pro at eating while on the road, so there were no issues.

UNTIL we go to the driveway. Lily wanted a taste of Jade's red flavor. Somehow during the transfer, Jade's sno-cone got dumped. Dumped out into the front seat...where, I can't decide if it is fortunately or unfortunately, my purse was laid open.

There was still definitely a mess on the seat, but my purse took the brunt of it. What a mess. Here are what my money and checkbook look like now...

And I had to take that picture with my cell phone, because guess what was laying inside my purse? MY DIGITAL CAMERA. Ugh. It is sticky suhweet now.

I rinsed out my purse as best I could, because it is leather so I couldn't throw it in the wash.

Let's just say I don't think I will be bringing it to any summer picnics.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Starbucks, Schmarbucks...puleeese!

I really am not a Starbucks regular. If I am going to spend $4 on a coffee, it is because I either am already having a bad day or am anticipating one, and therefore need the ultimate pick-me-up.

Case in point:

Yesterday morning, Jade and I had to leave at the crack of dawn with hair done, make-up applied, and two (yes, two!) pairs of tights on (this is all on her...), along with costume, hat, gloves, tap and ballet shoes, in order to make it to her dress rehearsal 45 minutes away.

I somehow left the house without coffee.

Spending the morning with crazed moms, even crazier teachers and over the top crazy dance directors sent me straight into a Starbucks frenzy.

Afterward, I found the closest one with a drive-thru. Drive-thrus are a requirement.

I pulled up and began placing my order. Whoa! The menu had totally changed since my last visit. I stumbled around a bit trying to decide between breakfast and lunch due to the time it was and how hungry/thirsty we both were.

It went sort of like this:

Me: Yes, uh, I'll have a tall skinny caramel latte with extra foam.

Barista: Is that all?

Me: No. Your menu has changed, do y'all still have those kid snack pack thingies?

Barista: Yes. Do you need one?

***enter grinding and whirling of machines***

Me: Yes.

Rude barista: Is that all?

Me: No. Do you have any of your tarragon chicken sandwiches?

***more blenders going to town***

Rude barista: What kind of sandwich?

Me: Tarragon chicken. *sigh* Do you have any?

Rude barista: (with tone in voice) I can check. Do you need anything else?

Me: (pondering. hot coffee is great...i did still want my morning coffee, but geez...it sure is hot...heading to 102 today...hmmm...i think i want an iced too)... Yes, I think I'll have one of your shaken black iced teas....with one Splenda. (a quick glance behind me shows no one else to be waiting)

***more whirling and swirling of blenders***

Rude barista: What else? A tea? What size?

Me: (seriously trying to figure out the size of teas on the new menu...) um, well, the $1.95 one...oh, I see now...a tall one.

Rude frustrated barista: Okay we do have the chicken sandwich. Now what size tea and what do you need (notice not want) in it?

Me: (with a definitely frustrated face, but stinkin' sweet fake voice). Just a tall one, with one Splenda. Oh, and a tall ice water too.

Rude barista with elevated tone: Does that complete your order?!?

Me: Yes. Yes, it does.

Rude barista in most sarcastic voice ever: See you at the window.

***I am contemplating what just happened. Thinking of how usually the baristas are annoyingly nice and conversational. But after waiting, the whole experience had honestly passed from my mind and I was chatting on the phone with Jerry as I arrived at the window.***

The rude barista is there waiting, actually leaning out, the window. She starts off with, "Ma'am, I could SEE the frustration on your face, but you have to understand that we have all these loud machines in here and I simply could not hear what you were ordering."

Jerry says, "Uh, oh. Call me back."

(see? She could SEE me? Oh dear.) (shouldn't they have to post it somewhere that you are being filmed?)

She continues as I put my phone down, "And your order just kept going on and on and on."

***Deep breath.***

Me: So, let me get this straight. You are upset that you couldn't hear me over your own machines and that I ordered too many things. Hmm. Well, I wasn't talking softly and if the machines are a problem, maybe they need to be moved away from the drive-thru area. I don't see how I am at fault. By the way, I could totally hear the frustration in your voice when you said, See you at the window. I, as the customer, should never hear frustration from you.

She appeared completely flabbergasted, uttered, "Well, okaaaay," and disappeared from the window. Next, a young chipper guy...the usual over the top, chatty, friendly type...served me our order. Then she reappeared to tell me that she didn't want me to be upset with Starbucks and handed me two of these thingies:

I realize the cell phone pix aren't really readable. But they basically say that Starbucks is sorry that my visit was "anything but wonderful" and that next time they see me I can enjoy a free beverage. It ends with, "We hope your next visit is better".

How could it not be, right? So this afternoon after Jade's recital was over, I went for a little free pick-me-up. This time I ordered with not only a *sweet* voice, but a *sweet* face too. A grande (why not?) iced skinny cinnamon dulce was the fix. And I waited, and waited, and waited.

12 minutes in a not very busy drive-thru.

I didn't care though. I had a freebie coupon.

At the end of 12 minutes I reached the window, they handed me my drink and said, "Sorry for the wait, this one is on us."

Well, awesome. Still have two more free drinks to go.

With swim lesson chauffeuring and VBS volunteering, I don't see these coupons making it through a week.

But it is ONLY the first week of JUNE

Spring is OVER. Just in time for the girls to start swim lessons. Trying to remember why I thought it'd be a good idea to do them at an outdoor pool at 4:30PM. Both mornings and indoors were options.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

We have a GRADUATE!

...a Pre-K Graduate that is...

I will admit that I often have thought (and still sort of do), that these types of events are unnecessary and actually rush them through milestones (or milestones that we've created) that should be reserved until later...maybe just until Kindergarten at least. ;) But when it happens to be your own kid, it is really hard not to get totally wrapped up in the fun. Did any of that make sense?

I didn't think so either... on to the pictures... and hoping they'll speak for themselves!

Grad close up.
Grad really close up.
Grad full length. You are supposed to notice the red toes.

Grad and lil sis.
Grad with my parents.
Grad with our family.
Grad with Jerry's parents.

Grad with her best friend from school--Danielle!

Grad with lead teacher-Ms. Heather.

Grad with assistant teacher-Ms. Tracy.

The program consisted of them counting in English, Spanish and German; singing two "color" songs (Blue and Brown), and a sweet and thoughtful delivery of their diplomas by Ms. Heather. She spoke of each child's unique qualities, strengths, and gifts and then predicted what type of profession they might eventually go into. There were future nurses, teachers, architects, Nascar drivers, librarians, actresses, etc.

She started to describe Lily as someone who knew a lot about the Bible stories they discussed, who brought God into her play (example: God would not like you doing that!), and who loved to sing praise and worship songs. My mind was going toward missionary, choir director, Christian artist (she really has a voice!)...so when she said Lily would be the next "preacher", I laughed loud. Like really loud. Embarrassing level of out loud. Like I seriously was having trouble stopping the laughter.

Okay...just so maybe you'll understand all my laughter...Our denomination just does not do the women in the pulpit thing.
They exited.
Grad with aunt and cousin.
We opted out of the cake and punch and headed to Bahama Bucks, where many sno-cones and other tasty treats were consumed. I didn't take any pics of us shoving sweets down our faces, but remembered the camera as our little family closed down the joint with some tether ball.

Jerry and I played each other first. Let's not discuss the outcome of that round.

Then he played the girls. He said that Lily gave him more competition than I did.

When I played her, I realized he wasn't just trying to be mean. She really almost beat me. We don't ever let our kids win just to win though. Ahem. Anyway, maybe this graduate could put her Bible skillz to use as a Christian-summer-camp-sports-organizer?

Still laughing. Good night!

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