Saturday, November 29, 2008

At Just Five Years Old, She Has......

been to 12 states
ridden on a camel, an elephant, and a pony
fed a pelican, lamas, goats, horses, and chickens
built sandcastles on numerous beaches
counted the rings on a tree
made a fairy garden
watched a meteor shower
watched butterflies emerge from their cocoons
ridden in a convertible
sailed on a catamaran along the Na Pali coast
seen belugas, orcas, humpbacks, and dolphins
flown on an airplane multiple times
flown in a helicopter over a canyon in Hawaii
been to Disneyland 3 times
seen the Grand Coulee Dam
been to the top of the Space Needle
become a big sister
scored her first goals in soccer
performed on stage at her ballet recital
learned how to play a few notes on the piano
played around with harmonicas, recorders, guitars, and drums
become a dog owner
flown a kite on the beach
ridden on a ferry boat
screamed on a roller coaster
spent the night in a monastery
dressed up as a bunny, a purple dinosaur, a puppy, Belle, & Padme Amadelia
sang a solo at a music class program
been to an impressionist exhibit
written a few poems
illustrated and authored numerous books
ridden the conch train in Key West, Florida
ridden in a limousine
composed a few songs
learned some Spanish
begun learning to swim
attended numerous live theatre productions
seen a Broadway production of The Lion King (in Spokane)
splashed in a waterfall
hiked on a mountain
camped out
gone sledding
caught several fish
ran a few children's 50 yard dashes


I have heard some pretty funny stuff these last couple of weeks leading up to Holland's birthday! I have been trying to write them down, but I know I missed a few. Here are some of my favorites though -

Holland was telling me about something she wanted for her birthday, and I said to her, "I think that would be a good present for Dylan to get for you".

She responded, "Are you kidding me, Mom? Dylan doesn't have any money she only has one lucky penny!"


We sent out 15 birthday invitations to Holland's birthday party and we also invited all of her friends in her class, which is about 14 kids. I seriously only counted on 10-15 friends coming, but as I already reported, we had 27 kids at her party! Anyway, as we were talking about it one day, she said, "I wonder why all these friends are coming to my party. They must love me or something!"


Then after the party, I think we were talking about all her friends again, and I think she must have been overwhelmed with all the attention, presents, and activity from the party. She said something like this, "Mommy, I'm gonna make a little bit or 2 or 3 of my friends stop loving me, but not my boyfriends."



As we were preparing for the party, she told me, "Mommy, I want all my boyfriends to sing "happy birthday to you, you live in a zoo" because it's funny and they love to sing that one!". I want them to sing regular happy birthday first, though!


On the drive home from her party, she informed us, "That was the most funnest birthday party I've ever been too!"


Then just randomly, totally out of the blue, she said, "One day when I get bigger, can I go to Antarctica and see the icebergs and stuff?" she paused then exclaimed, "I know! How 'bout for my sixteenth birthday?!"


Saturday, November 22, 2008

Birthday Loot

Birthday Bash Guest List

Holland made this birthday party list a few weeks ago, and along with these guests, I allowed her to invite her school friends. She has 14 kids in her class so that was quite a few invites going out. I decided to go ahead and let her invite that many kids, because I thought we would only get about half of them to come. Well, today is the big bash, and we currently have 27 RSVP's! We were still getting them last night. We are having her party at the Spokane Elite Gymnastics facility because we attended a couple of parties there this year and it was a big hit! There are trampolines, trapeze bars, balance beams, high bars, and even a big zip line!

This party goes against everything I have ever said about birthday parties for my kids. I swore I would never have character plates and napkins. Guess who we're having? A combination of Ariel and Spiderman! They're the new Hollywood couple, didn't you know?! I also swore I wouldn't have a party with more kids than I can handle. Well, the 27 RSVP's kinda speak for themselves, however that doesn't even mention all the toddler siblings that will be toddling and crawling around. I think I have counted at least 6 or 7 of them (including her toddler sister)! I have even said I didn't want to do a party at the party facility type places, and well, you see where that got me.

I guess I have always wanted to be the creative domestic mom that has original parties at her house with homemade crafts, baked goods, and fun themed activities (a pirate/princess treasure hunt, a fairy garden tea party, etc.) You know, the types of parties that Martha Stewart must have thrown for her daughter!

I think my problem is that reality is setting in. The party facilities are fast and easy and it takes the pressure off of you. And the bigger the guest list, the more fun the kids have. (theoretically) The character plates and napkins are what all the kids want and expect. So, how could I deny all that, and plus I am suppose to be "embracing" this sort of thing. It is my word for the year after all! So as I sit here and ponder why I didn't ask the kids to bring art work or letters for Holland instead of gifts, I am going to be thankful that she has 27 friends who are coming (with gift in hand) to celebrate her and all her wonderfulness!

Tune in later for a more in depth report and probably a couple of pictures, too!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


1. I had a visit last week from my mom and one of my nieces from Kentucky. I hadn't seen my neice in almost five years, and she just turned 18, so you can imagine how much she has changed in that period of time. It was so great to see her, but it made me sad that we are so far away. I seriously want to do a better job of keeping in touch with her. I have totally dropped the ball on that one. I think I got scared when she and her siblings turned into teenagers, I just didn't know how to relate. I got to do a photo shoot with her one day that she was here so look for those pictures later this week!

2. We have finished our "faces of hope" fundraiser calendar for the Isaac Foundation. We are just waiting on the production of them to be wrapped up. we will be selling them for $10.00 a piece almost ALL of the proceeds will go into the therapy funds for giving out scholarships to local families. If we sell them all, then that will be $10,000! How cool is that? If you are interested in ordering one for yourself or for Christmas presents, just leave a comment here or get in touch with me and I will make sure you get a reserved copy! They might go fast, you know?!

3. Dylan is at such a fun, fun age right now. She is really starting to imitate everything we say,in addition to acquiring her own little repertoire of words! I absolutely adore this phase. I guess it's time to clean up our language again! ; )

4. Holland is turning five in a couple of weeks. I can't believe my baby girl is growing up so fast. I know, I know - that's so cliche. It's so true though!

5. I've been selling a lot of the gallery wrapped canvases to my photography clients. They are so, so cool. I don't ever want to part with them. I just want to hang them on my walls even though they aren't my kids or my family! Holland likes them too - I had a big 24 x 30 canvas on our wall of the Goins family and she was so bummed when I took it down. She said, "I love that picture, mommy. I think we should keep it on our wall!"

6. We bought Boden a heating pad to lay around on all day, and he hardly moves from the thing! It is under our steps in this little closed in area that claimed for his abode. He is getting bigger and bigger these days, and he is learning to follow these commands: "sit", "lie down", "stay", and "get on your bed".

7. I am secretly dreading the birthday present component to Holland's birthday party. It seems like all I do is weed through her stuff. I am constantly getting rid of things, and now we are going to get a whole influx of toys, stuffies, and who knows what else. I did tell her that we were going to have to get rid of some stuff to make room for the new stuff, and she promptly went into her room and started collecting a pile of rejects. She ended up with two paper grocery bags full of stuff. Not bad, huh? We just need to do it a few more hundred times!

8. I am enjoying our extended fall her in the Inland Northwest. We are still coasting right along into the middle of November without any snow and not even in the 7 day forecast! That is wonderful! We had such a long drawn out winter (getting snow in April and May) that I still haven't recovered! I do plan to do some winter sports this year though. I have said for the last 3-4 winters that I want to learn to cross country skii, and I just found out that my moms in motion team is going to have a couple of lessons in January. Can't wait for that!

9. I still haven't gotten over my heal injury so I haven't been for a run since August, and I am seriously missing it. I keep saying I'm gonna just take off on a run and see how it goes, but I'm having a hard time finding the time. Maybe this weekend.....

10. We have some new neighbors that live two houses down and Holland has gotten to be really good friends with their five-year-old son, Aiden. (He's the one that's influencing the star wars and legos phase that she is going through right now). His parents came over the day to drop Aiden off for a playdate and we invited them in. And three bottles of wine, lots of parenting stories, and a pizza and breadstix order later - we have a new set of neighbors that we now call "friends". Such fun!

That's all for now!

Monday, November 17, 2008

A Birthday Cake for the Birthday Girl

Holland did this drawing on Jonathan's tablet laptop tonight. She did another one right before this and accidentally deleted it -- and Jonathan was a lot more upset about it than she was. To her it was no big deal to just dash off another one. While he was putting Dylan to sleep, she slid a note under the door that said: 'DAD WIL YU PLES SAV" -- i.e. Dad, will you please save [the picture of the cake I just drew].

Thursday, November 6, 2008

You're Not a Bachelor Anymore

Dear Sweet Husband,

Thank you so much for taking the initiative to do a couple loads of laundry. However, I prefer that my panties and and other girly garments are not washed with the towels.


Your Sweet Wife

P.S You're not a bachelor anymore!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Dylan's Baby

Dylan has found a constant companion - her sister's baby doll, Annabelle. The only problem is that Annabelle isn't much smaller than Dylan so she is pretty heavy to lug around! She has a pacifier and bottle that she will latch onto and make sucking noises, and she will also coo, cry, and giggle. I think this means her head is full of hardware which makes her much heavier than the average baby doll.

Dylan often wrestles with her and gets easily frustrated, but she just keeps at it! She wants to love her, feed her, groom her, and cuddle with her. She wants her at the dinner table, in the car, and often times will take her into her crib with her.

It is all very, very sweet.

(Until the pacifier pops out and Dylan can't get it back in, or until Dylan drops baby Annabelle on her toe and screams for 10 minutes, or until (last but not least)Holland suddenly decides after two years that she is interested in babies again!)

Oh yeah - for those of you following the penny story - it has been retrieved!

Birthday Poem for Grandma

I love you, Grandma
with my heart
To find a little
angel tart.

footnote: angel tarts are "little pop tarts that angels eat"

Saturday, November 1, 2008

So Long, Wonder Women

We had quite an interesting mix of costumes at our house this year for Halloween. Holland chose Wonder Woman a few weeks ago, and was incredibly excited about it. When she first got the costume, she didn't want to take it off. She played in it for hours and hours. Every time someone came to our house, she would race into her bedroom to put it on and show it off.

Meanwhile, as her love for Wonder Woman was growing strong so was her love for Star Wars. (We have slowly been making our way through the series). She informed me that next year for Halloween she wanted to be r2 d2 , the year after that she wanted to be Yoda, and the year after that she wanted to be Darth Vader (even though the boys at school told her could ONLY be Princess Leah).

I was out shopping yesterday and I ran across the Padme' Amidala costume (that is the queen - princess leah's mom, for those of you who are not familiar with star wars) for 50% off so I decided to buy it for her so she could have it to play in. There is new neighbor boy named Aiden, who loves star wars,that she would love to impress! I had barely gotten it out of the bag yesterday when she snatched it out of my hands, tore the tags off of it, and begged and pleaded to wear it instead of Wonder Woman. Needless, to say we had a last minute switcharoo.

So long, Wonder Woman, you're lasso has been replaced with a lightsaber. And just like that - Wonder Woman was no more..

As far as other costumes are concerned, there was Jonathan who always pulls out his scary ape mask every year. It makes most kids cry! It is just so ugly, and it kinda freaks me out. I think it is his facial hair that makes it look so freaky, but then again there is also the jumping around ape dance that he does! I'm not sure which one is freakier.

Lastly, there was a cute, little sock monkey who refused to keep her hat on - which was basically the whole costume! I couldn't resist this costume though because it was just so different than anything I had seen before. Dylan made a very cute sock monkey and here is the proof: