Sunday, February 28, 2010


Letting my kids play the Wii for any length of time turns them into little zombies. Owen is particularly prone to this, and has no interest in regular life after more than 30 minutes on the Wii. Do you see why we need outdoor weather?

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Flying Toward Spring

The kids really want warm outdoor weather, but they're willing to play no matter what it's like out there. Jumping is one of Big O's favorite activities, and he was so happy to have Ella home and "flying" with him today.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Kitchen Art

Today I decided to scrub my kitchen from top to bottom. I was extremely thorough and even cleaned the underside of the kitchen table. Imagine my surprise when I found this lovely collage on the underside of the table. I'm blaming it on Bryn since it's right in front of her spot at the table, but we'll see who confesses to clandestine grocery sticker art.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Fiesta Para Todos

Ironically, this celebration is for Bryn's school, and I don't have any pictures of her. I think that whole kinda tween scene means we'll be seeing less and less of her.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Carpool Cuties

Owen and Claire have a definite disadvantage in having older siblings--getting dragged around in the car for hours on end for no reasons of their own. Today is dance day and between carpool drop offs and pickups, they end up in the car for an hour just to go somewhere a few miles away. They really are pretty good sports about it, but then again, they don't know anything different.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


Today's Word of the Day is brought to you by Claire. Mork means you want more on your fork. For example, "mork green greens" means you want more green beans preloaded on your fork since it's too tough to do it yourself. Mork works well in almost every situation since who wouldn't want to eat everything on a fork? And that's Claire's word of the day.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Look What I Did!

Claire is quite the little artiste. Unfortunately, she uses other people's supplies and then her own body for a canvas. Not your best idea, Claire. One long bath later, she's mostly flesh colored again.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Ringing in the Year of the Tiger

Having Chinese relatives totally rocks when you get to attend tasty feasts like tonight. LuSz made wonderful food, the company was great, and my children were in heaven. Who could ask for more?

Here's Nana as assistant dumpling maker. Pretty impressive.

Happy middle of the Chinese New Year celebration to all, and to all a good night.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Friday, February 19, 2010

I don't get it.

The three oldest children are completely and totally fascinated by my husband's computer game. I just do not get it. It's an old DOS game, so the graphics are almost not recognizable as what they're supposed to be, the action is akin to a board game and the sounds effects are pretty pathetic. But all of them will sit there and watch for as long as he plays. Maybe I should just be grateful they're all occupied and nobody's making a mess?

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Last Minute Homework

It drives me crazy when it's 8:30 on a Thursday night and the kids suddenly have homework "they forgot about" and have magically remembered. I guess I can't blame her, since I used to the be the same way, but still!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Watching the Flash

When the kids came home with free tickets to the Flash game tonight, they were thrilled and very persuasive. Guess they have just the right combination of cuteness and charm, because here they are watching the game after what should have been their bedtime on a school night.

Claire liked playing with the chairs, cheering, and trying to make friends with the teenage boys in front of us. She had a great time, but I'm not too sure those boys would say the same.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I need to get a job

just so I can get this kind of love when I come home.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Getting my Greens

My good friends have a blog called Herbivore Meals, all about eating a plant based diet. They're both sugar-free vegans, and try to post helpful information for those who are interested in eating the same way or just moving toward a healthier diet. I love my veggies, and I can give up meat, but oh the sugar! Just don't ask me to say good bye to my best friends, Little Debbie and Ben & Jerry! We've been in a strong relationship of mutual support for years, and I just couldn't walk away from that.

Melissa posted a few weeks ago about Main Dish Salads as a great way to get greens into your diet. I love the concept, I completely agree, and I believe it's the perfect way to add some healthy elements to my diet. I immediately thought up this tasty main dish salad. The only thing that's missing is the Diet Pepsi. I just wasn't sure it would work well as a dressing (not quite the right consistency), so decided to have that on the side.

And now comes the really entertaining part. BRYN ATE IT! She told me it looked good, so I told her to have at it. She ate broccoli with whipped cream and Swiss Cake Rolls with spinach. Apparently Melissa really was right!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

Claire's true love right now is Elmo. Morning, noon and night, she asks for Elmo on tv, Elmo books to read, Elmo to hold. And Elmo is serious business; there's no laughing, playing or smiling, just hard core concentration. Unless, of course, your mom bugs you long enough that you say "cheese" to make her go away. But I wouldn't know anything about, because I'd never bug my child into posing for a camera. Nope. Never.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Crafty and Helpful: A Winning Combination

I asked the big girls to keep an eye on Claire while I helped Owen in the shower. When I came out I found the three girls all in a row drawing together. Usually they do everything possible to exclude Claire at craft time. I certainly don't blame them, as she's a definite menace with a marker, and even worse if she gets her hands on a glue stick. Their peaceful playtime was very sweet, and Claire was thrilled to be a part of it.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Upon Viewing the Christus

After sitting quietly and looking for a few minutes, Owen seemed very impressed.

Owen: Mom, I think I'm on Jesus' good list.
(long pause while he reverently stares at the statue again)
Owen: Yeah, he's going to bring me lots of presents and....oh, wait! That's Santa, huh, mom, not Jesus? Then where's the real Jesus? I want the real one, not the statue one.

I'm not sure whether I should be impressed with myself for making sure Owen had plenty of talks about Jesus as the reason for the season back in December, or if I should blame myself for an obvious lack of clarity. I certainly have my work cut out for me on this one.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Cart Wars

Claire wants to do anything anyone else does--especially if it involves climbing, danger, or bothering someone else. Owen wants to do things without being bothered by Claire. A shopping cart equals the perfect recipe for disaster with these two.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

An Evening at the Beach

Ella had a great time making blurry pictures on purpose today. This one is her favorite since she says it looks like she's at the beach. That's a much nicer thought than our February dead lawn and blacktop road reality.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


When your stuck in the carpool lane waiting for your big sister to come out of school, you have to make your own entertainment. Not that I'm advocating Owen's diversions...

Monday, February 8, 2010

This is my life

And while I'd like to say, "I wouldn't change anything about it," I really would change the never ending laundry to magically *poof* clean clothes whenever I needed them. And *poof* folded, and *poof* again and they're put away. Yup, I'd definitely switch to that system.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Best Friends

Owen: "Mom, brothers and sisters are supposed to be connected together, right? Like I'm connected to Ella. We're connected together, and she's my best friend. I love her so much."

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Flower Girl

Ella was a beautiful flower girl at Jacob and Ashlee's wedding tonight. She took her duties very seriously and hardly cracked a smile while she spread those petals. The rest of the night was all smiles though as she thoroughly enjoyed the family, dancing, and especially the cake eating! Claire wasn't so pleased with Ella's job, as she started yelling "uh-oh!" the minute Ella threw her first petals to the ground. Needless to say, Claire enjoyed the rest of the ceremony from outside the chapel.

Friday, February 5, 2010

The Ellas and the Floam Cat

Ella is named for my great grandmother Ella. This ceramic cat and kitten tsotchke belonged to my great grandma, and my grandma gave it to me after her death. I didn't really like it or want it, but somehow the kitty ended up in box and was saved for a long time. I found it when Ella was about three and told her it came from the Ella she was named after. My Ella was thrilled. She thinks the cat is beautiful and the kitten is so sweet and on and on. The cats lived on the shelf for another year, until Ella's fourth birthday. She got Floam, and let me tell you, those were some exciting times for a four year old. She Floamed all sorts of things, and then decided her cat needed a blanket to stay warm. It's so hysterical and so incredibly tacky, but it's the perfect mix somehow. Now it lives on the shelf next to the printer. Andrew isn't entirely thrilled that we keep it, but it makes me and Ella smile.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Baby Goes Retro

Little Claire Bear was striking a pose today wearing my old camp shirt. This is my only piece of baby wear that managed to be held onto and get passed down to me.

My mom made this when I was about Claire's age and embroidered it with my faves, which means my beloved Pooh Bear was the dominant theme. My mom's nickname for me as a child was Amie Pooh, which now cracks my kids up. I just think it's sweet to see my little bear wearing my once upon a time bear shirt.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


Bryn seems to enjoy trying to do two things at once, even when I'm not sure they're the best combination.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Whistle Pigs

Ella officially knows a whole lot more about groundhogs than I do after today. Did you know they are also called whistle pigs or woodchucks? So if you're saying the "How much wood could a woodchuck chuck..." tongue twister, you're really referencing the groundhog. Apparently they're also excellent swimmers. So many things I didn't learn in second grade!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Spectator Sport

Owen loves to play on the Wii these days. Claire is not one to be left out. Since Owen took the chair, she got a pillow. Since Owen got to hold the Wii remote, Claire got snacks. Since Owen yelled comments, so did Claire. O likes to yell out the button sequences for certain actions, like (AB, AB, that's how you punch! HiyA!" Claire can't quite get all that so she sings, "ABCD, Yay!"