Thursday, January 28, 2010

What I Get

This is the kind of thing that happens when I attempt to work from home with the kids here....

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Thankfully, she has enough hair that it's not too noticeable. She is in dire need of a haircut, and apparently, she knows it. No worries, one is scheduled in a week and a half :-)!



Friday, January 22, 2010

Sloooow Down

Things have finally slowed down a bit around here. I feel like we have been rushing non-stop since Thanksgiving. With the holidays, work, and everything else we have on our plates, the end of the year always seems like such a blur. Add to that, Claire’s birthday the weekend after New Year’s & Pookie running our van into the side of the garage and see my blood pressure rise (again & again). The weekend after Claire’s birthday party, we headed to Gatlinburg with 3 other couples from church. To be honest, going into it, I was more stressed than anything. With all of the “busy”ness that we’d been having, this would’ve been our first weekend to just chill, and we decided to go out of town. While the intention was only relaxation and fun with friends, for me, leaving the kiddos always results in a little extra stress (and guilt). My mom stayed with them & they prefer her over me most days, so there is no reason to stress…that’s just how I’m wired.

I worked ½ day last Friday, ran by the sitters and kissed the kids goodbye, headed home to pack & then we left for Gatlinburg. Along the way, I was able to catch up on my magazine reading. I get way too many magazines, but most of them I get for free or next to nothing. I LOVE magazines; I’m pretty much a junkie, but I have zero time to read them. So, I caught up on the last 4 months worth on the way down & back. I probably won’t get to read one again until May or so :)!
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i snapped this as soon as we got out of the car at the cabin

We arrived around dinner time and went to dinner with the other couple that was already there. It was yummy & I made myself sick on the bread they had. It was soooo good!! It was pretty thick, but soft & it seemed to have some salt on the outside. They also had real butter, which I could've eaten with a spoon!

Saturday morning, we headed into Gatlinburg & ate at The Pancake Pantry. I opted for the Cherry Crepes (with a side of bacon for some protein :-), and they were awesome! After that, the girls hit the Outlet Mall, while the guys headed back to the cabin to watch basketball. We got back to the cabin just in time to head out to dinner at an Asian restaurant, which was also excellent! Back at the cabin, we hung out for a bit and then played a few games of Taboo. I laughed so hard that my stomach was sore the next day. It was hilarious!Photobucket

Pook & I at dinner Sat. night

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The foggy trail behind our cabin on Sunday morning

I had hoped to take some mountain pics while we were there, but the weather was pretty gray the majority of the time. Sunday morning looked promising for a bit, but then the fog set in and it pretty much got uglier as the day progressed. We headed back home around 10:30, and got here in time to meet the kids at a birthday party.

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The whole crew before we headed out

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It was really good to get away and not have to "take care" of anyone else for a few days. I felt totally rejuvenated for about 24 hours, but it's all worn off again now! I guess that's why we should do adult only trips more often :-)!

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Looking into the "hills" as we headed home

This week has been really uneventful and just great for my sanity! We are planning on heading to the circus this afternoon. Claire has had a rough few days battling a cough & lots of snot, so I'm not sure she's going to be up to it, but I hope so!




Thursday, January 14, 2010

Celebrate, Celebrate!

Claire's birthday party was this past Saturday. She was looking so forward to it. Everywhere we went, she would tell strangers she was having a party. It was the sweetest thing. At Christmas, she started calling presents "parties," so I'm not sure that she understood she was going to have a house full of 30 people! She's a little shy in crowds, and she was this day, but I think she had a blast nonetheless!



I'm not really a themed birthday type gal until the kid demands it. When I asked her what kind of party she wanted, she said a "green" party. So, instead of going the environmentally friendly route, I just looked for a green invitation. Since the invitation had a flower on it, I just kind of went with that.


The blog world is such a great thing for birthday parties. You can get so many ideas from seeing what other people do. I saw this banner idea here. Although she was using the banner for something different, I thought the idea was cute. I actually took down the panels that are usually on these rods because they're red and I thought they'd clash with the pastel paper :).


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A little closer look...

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I saw these paper pom poms here and fell in love with them. I ended up making 7 of them and hung them from the crown moulding on the wall that holds the columns that separates our "areas." I could've left them hanging ALOT longer, but I had a showing on Wednesday, and didn't know if they'd get it.
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Because I wanted something cheap, but similar in style for the tables, I made these. I found the tutorial here. I wasn't really happy with the way only 1 of these looked, so these are actually 6 of them taped together with floral tape.

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It's hard to believe my baby girl looked this way 2 years ago.

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Here she is as guests are arriving, etc. She stuck pretty close to someone throughout the entire party. I am in love with her pants. I ordered them here, and she did a great job & was super quick!! I actually ordered the coordinating fabric (Amy Butler) elsewhere & had my friend Kristen applique it for me. I plan to get a warm weather top done too so she can wear these in the spring / summer.
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Claire warmed up and started checking everything out.

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She chose to open presents prior to having cake & dove right in. She was all into the "parties!"
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This was a little toy bin that she got, but all the little girls thought it was fun to sit in.

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Finally, it was cake time. I chose to get petit fours this year, and they were SOOO good! I forgot to take a picture of all of them, but you get the jist....white cake / white icing = yummy!
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She blew the candles out before we even got "Happy Birthday" out of our mouths. After the candles were relit, she attempted a few weak puffs & then decided to grab the flame with her hands. Thankfully, she didn't get burnt at all.

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As the party was wrapping up, several kiddos played a game of Go Fishin'. Claire LOVES this game, even though it's Grant's from Christmas.

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I think edible favors are the best kind, so instead of sugar cookie overkill, I tried something new this year. Inspired by bakerella and Mckmama, I made cake pops. They were pretty yummy if I do say so myself!
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After the party, Claire insisted on trying on a new outfit, that she then wore to church the following day. This picture is super blurry, but it perfectly portrays how she felt about the party being over! When I asked her if she had a fun party, she said, "Yeah, I have another one."

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I totally forgot to get a family picture at her party, so later in the night, we attempted a mom & kids.
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It was a fun time for all of us, and I hope that our friends enjoyed it too!!


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I ♥ Faces - Best Face

In honor of their first birthday, i ♥ faces theme this week is best face. The photo has to be recent (Dec or Jan). I've been a total slacker at taking pictures lately (except of events) of my own children. I snapped this of my niece on Sunday at Claire's family birthday party. Pook & I started dating right after she was born, so to see her looking like this makes me feel a little old - seems to be a trend lately :-)! Check out more entries by clicking on the link above!
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Sunday, January 10, 2010

01-10-10

January 10th is a day that our world became a little sweeter with the addition of Claire 2 years ago. It was a crazy, crazy day. If you don't know my birth story, you can find it here. However, if you're pregnant, I'd advise against reading it as it might scare the daylights out of you :0)!
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taken Jan 10,2008

Growing up with 3 brothers, I desperately wanted to have a daughter one day. Don't get me wrong, my little boy is great & I love him "to the moon and back," but I reallllly wanted to play dress-up. Claire has fulfilled all of those dreams, but unfortunately, she's really starting to have an opinion about what she wears....actually about how much she wears. She chooses to wear layers, which usually involve panties on the outside.

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taken 11/13/2009

Other times, she chooses to strip totally down. I can walk away for 2 minutes, and come back to a half or not at all dressed child. This happens most often when I'm trying to cook dinner.


Like her momma, she LOVES to eat. She wants to eat as soon as she gets up in the morning and will eat anytime thereafter.

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taken May 4, 2009
I've said recently that she's 2 going on 12. She wants to do all the "big girl" things and is already into Princesses, which I'm not super fond of. She's growing up waaaay too fast! She always has to have a hairbow or a barrette. She also loves pigtails or ponytails, which she just calls "tails."
She can talk on the phone with the best of them.
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taken 10-17-
She goes through my drawers and wants to put on makeup and lipstick constantly.
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taken 11-16-2009

Although she's extremely shy in large crowds or unfamiliar situations, she can be quite the ham when she's comfortable with her surroundings. Her vocabulary has exploded, and she astounds me every day with all of the things she's saying. She went from saying very little to speaking in sentences in about 2 weeks. Now, she says pretty much everything and talks pretty clearly. She loves to sing and dance. Her favorite Christmas song this year was "Away in a Manger," which she called "Jesus in the Hay."

I can already tell she has the sweetest little heart. When she says her prayers at night, she randomly prays for friends and it always makes me smile. She can hold her own with her brother these days, and wants to do everything he does. Their fighting is a little exhausting at times, but I know it's just begun!

We love you sweet girl and can't wait to see what the next year has in store for you!

Happy 2nd Birthday!!
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taken 11/14/2009
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taken 9/30/2009
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taken 11-27-2009
This picture was on her birthday party invitation - pictures from that to come later this week!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

A New Post for the New Year

Things have been just a little busy around here. I think I remember saying last year that having a baby right after Christmas makes for a very stressful few weeks. I have been in full birthday party mode this week busy getting everything (except my house!) ready for claire's party this weekend. I really wanted to write a "New Year" post, not really with resolutions, but with some goals I hope to accomplish either myself or as a family (potty training anyone?) Maybe I'll aim for next week on that one.

We had a snow day today, although there wasn't much snow. Grant was dying to make a snow angel but since there was very little snow in the grass, he made one on the patio. He wasn't really dressed for it, and he was absolutely freezing after he did!

Just a few pics from a bowling trip we took last Saturday.


Grant insisted on using one certain ball even though it was heavier than some of the others. He probably could've bowled without the ramp had he not been so stubborn....wonder where he gets that!Claire kept everyone in check and sucked down an ICEE while the game was going on. This girl can put away the "slushy" beverages!