Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Gardeners 2.0

In years gone by, I planned the garden and took pride in the layout, seedlings and fresh produce.  In the last few years, I'm working more and my busiest season coincides with planting season.  I'm so thankful that HandyMan has taken the lead on the gardenin and training up the next generation of little gardeners.

MMan was giving instructions on planting the carrots while GGirl munched away on a stalk of rhubarb. I sat back, enjoyed the show and the sunny afternoon!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

"Hi Fuzzy Man"

Today we went to Animal Adventure to visit our local wildlife neighbors.  They have a great setup and a beautiful new giraffe.  What was most fun for me today (along with the fabulous company of friends!) was watching my fearless little MMan greet and feed and pet the animals.  The greetings of "Hello fuzzy man!", "Hi buddy", and " Hi big man" were heard over and over again as he greeted pigs, goats, lambs, zebras, yaks, llamas and more.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

New Skills: Bike Riding

The children were recently outfitted with bikes of proper size and good repair.  MMan loves riding and usually can be heard singing while he zooms around.  GGirl is working hard to overcome a bit of a fear of falling, and gets her cycling groove on best when she's rested.  We took advantage of an empty parking lot this morning so they could work on their new skills.  

Sunday, April 12, 2015


Nothing warms the body and soul after a long cold winter like the sight of crocuses and a sunny, 60 degree day!

The clean windows will help me feel like I got something accomplished today and lessen the "I shoulds" while I park myself in an Adirondack chair with a book!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Life Lessons With Socks & Umbrellas

Are sometimes learned with socks and umbrellas.  After a lesson about how rules protect us, GGirl and MMan decided that they liked the "rule" game, and played for another half hour.

Just Chillin' ...

...With Olaf and my movie.

Thursday, March 5, 2015


Tonight the kids wanted to share GGirl's bed.  Usually this ends in a fight over covers and one or the other of them in screaming tears.  But, tonight when they asked, I didn't feel like the fight so I said yes.  It got quiet up there.  It stayed quiet.  When I went to check on them, this is what I found:

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Mom's Sidekick

MMan is coming into his own.  He's finding his vocabulary and voice and letting his thoughts be known.  His "ayup" answer still makes me giggle every time he uses it, which isn't good if I'm in the middle of a discussion about a poor behavior choice!  He's a hit-and-miss eater, but is steadily growing.  I'm hanging on to the snugly toddler days as long as I can and I love his grin.

Usually I keep my work to the hours that HandyMan is home or the kids are asleep.  Some days, that doesn't always play out.  MMan had woken up from a nap and I was trying to finish up a few things.  He made it clear that he wanted a movie on my phone and wanted to "listen".  So, I outfitted my little sidekick.  Then HandyMan came home and caught us and took the photo.

Friday, February 27, 2015

A Style, Still, All Her Own

GGirl's sense of style emerged early and has continued to evolve.  Her most recent exploration is in the area of prints, and such.  The shirt matched the jumper because they both had white, then everything else was accessories.

She was going through a bag of clothes passed to us and was very excited about the pink, sparkly, pretzel sweatshirt.  I was at a loss until she showed me what she was talking about.  May we all have more pretzels in our life.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Ice Cream and Play

It's February and it's cold.  So GGirl had great fun redeeming a voucher for ice cream she received for Valentine's day.  We alao tagged in an afternoon adventure to the Discovery Center.  No matter how maby times we go, the kids still find fun new things to play with.

Friday, February 20, 2015


Every so often GGirl will announce that she has a show.  It's always entertaining.  Tonight's show, directed by GGirl and starring some less that cooperative actor(s), featured Firestar, Spiderman and IceMan in a quick action feature that was beyond the speed of the focus of my camera.  There was flying ice and fire, tickling, running and laughter.  Encore's continued until the "audience" announced it was time for bed.  :)

Tricky Pizza

Pizza is such a favorite around here, but it has become a tricky road to get dinner on the table.  Since I've gone gluten-free, pizza on the menu has gotten a bit more complicated.  I thought I could get away with making my own personal size crusts and then making a "family pizza" for everyone else.  Not so much.  That didn't fly with the Wee-Ones who then wanted their own pizza's too.  OK, we can do that.

So, now when we have pizza, it's a make-your-own pizza adventure.  Everyone gets their own blob of dough to make their own pizza, and everyone is happy.  Usually.  Until you tell MMan to quit eating the dough or GGirl that she can't have anymore cheese.  Then if it's too close to dinner time, the adventure heads south into Meltdown Land.  But, we've gotten it down to a pretty quick science and the kids often eat more, because they made it.  Win!

Kindergarten Graffiti

"Mommy, I wrote a note on your car!"

After I took the picture.  "I wrote 'I love you' on Daddy's car too, but he didn't take a picture."

I'm sure it will be "wash me" before spring is over!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Identity Crisis

GGirl is going through phases where she is absorbing the identity of some of her favorite cartoon characters.  Or at least parts of their names.  Papers come home from school with various names on them, and sometimes include part of her given name.  Sometimes they don't.

Saturday, February 14, 2015


I want to get away, I want to fly away!  -Lenny Kravitz

Well, we don't always get what we want. There were no planes, but there was a 24 hour get away for HandyMan and me.  We ran off to Syracuse to play afor a night.  Go karts, bowling, video games and fun adventures were had and amazing GF Chinese food was consumed and a fantastic chocolate dessert was savored.   We woke up when we were ready to and took our time over breakfast.  It was lovely!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Valentines Day in Kindergarten

Valentine's day is one of the 'party' days at school.  GGirl was very excited to make presents for her friends.  That party was all about icecream sundaes.  By the end of the party, there was a room full of sugared happy kids!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Snowy Days

This winter we've had a lot of snow-more than I remember getting in the last few years. Delays and snow days just keep coming.  GGirl and MMan have thoroughly enjoyed playing in the cold white stuff.   HandyMan has also spent a fair bit of time joining in the fun

Friday, February 6, 2015

Some Decisions Are Easy

Go out and walk, or yoga in front of the roaring fire.  It's a no-brainer on a morning like this!  February: the longest shortest month of the year.

Monday, February 2, 2015

A Princess Engineer

You've heard about the boy and his train, well GGirl got some additional add-on pieces for our train set for her birthday - complete with a pink train, a castle and an enchanted forest.  It was a great way to pass time on this snowy, cold afternoon.  We had tracks covering most of the living room floor before we were done and enough room for two little engineers once MMan woke up from his nap. 

Friday, January 30, 2015

Crafty Girl

Equipped with many crafty kits after her birthday, GGirl and HandyMan crafted the afternoon away.  The cat is her first ever sewing project and she did an awesome job of it!  She and HandyMan upped the skill level when they jumped to the rubber-band bracelet loom - that was a little more challenging.  The owl is a plush coloring project that she whipped out while she was watching Frozen (what else!) and I think she had it done before Ana could get to the chocolate.  

Taking Advantage of a 20 Degree Morning

Even with my warm weather gear, I've decided that if the temperature is under 15, it's just to cold to be out walking.  And it takes way too long to warm up afterward!  Not enough hot cocoa fixins in my kitchen.  I've discovered a great yoga channel on youtube to get me thorough the rest of winter

But, it means that on the rare morning like this, when the little red line on the thermometer is actually above 20, I hit the road. Yes, 23 degrees felt warm, even though I looked like Olaf's cousin by the time I met up with my ride.

I can't wait for spring.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Sensational Six

Dear GGirl,
Today is your birthday!  You requested banana bread pancakes for breakfast and pizza for dinner.  Cake from the bakery at school and presents after school.  Calls from friends and grandparents were a highlight as you are now becoming interested in getting your own phone calls.  Ice-cream with a candle topped off today's festivities and on Saturday, it's Tea Party Time!

You are one great kid!  You are so full of energy that I can hardly keep up.  I love your inhibitions at being the center of attention - it showed in full color today as you were so excited for any gathering to sing happy birthday to you!  You wore your birthday crown with pride and were thrilled with a new dress we found in the stash of clothes that you hadn't gotten in to yet. You are a great reader, but can't be bothered to color in the lines.  You seem to have my planning gene and like to have everyone lined out around you.  You are gracious with your brother and kind to your friends.

Last night when I tucked you in, I was lamenting the last night of tucking in my 5-year-old girl.  You very matter-of-factly informed me "I'll be the same girl, I'll just be a different number!".  I'm glad that you've reached a "different number".  That you are healthy, and that you are the same girl.

I love you and the little girl you are!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Safety from Siblings

Me: MMan, what are you doing?
MMan: (with an mischievous grin) I safe of Gwnonyn!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Snowy Play!

Our family time doesn't fall in normal intervals like evenings and weekends.  Occasionally, HandyMan is home to get GGirl off the bus and play in the afternoon.  On this particular afternoon, they all bundled up and headed out to play in the snow.  There was running, there was chasing and there was tossing of clumps of snow.  It was packed down so to say they "made snowballs" may be a stretch.  But it was clearly two against 1.  I only stepped out as far as I had to to take a few pictures. :)

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

I Happy!

Today was one of those days that the sun shone brightly and the temperature seemed tolerable as long as you didn't look at the thermometer.  The sunshine comes with a cost in the winter!  Days like today where the sun shines off the snow and temperatures seem tolerable, I remember there are a few things I like about winter.  But it seemed nice enough out so MMan and I ran some errands.
I guess I've told him that we take naps and sleep so we can be happy and have fun adventures.  So now, on a few occasions, when fighting a nap, he proudly announces "I happy!" And goes about his merry way.  He's also excused himself left whatever is going on to go to his room, snuggle with his binkie and blanket and return 5-30 minutes later making the same announcement.

Backseat Drivers

It was one of those mornings when we were all trying to get out of the house at the same time to get GGirl to school and then off on other errands.  It was time to leave and MMan was lost in his imagination driving a busload of passengers (the staircase) and holding on to his steering wheel (rubbermaid lid) for dear life.  So in an effort to get out the door without a meltdown, I told him to get in the car and he could drive in the car.  That appeased my public transit wannabe.  Except then GGirl wanted to drive in the car too and made a break for my rubbermaid cabinet (in the opposite direction of the door we were trying to get out of) to get her own "steering wheel".

Oh, no you don't!  Just like every other house in this country, the bottoms and tops of my rubbermaid container rarely match up when I want them to and we are certainly not taking them to get lost in the abyss that is the back-seat of my van.  

So with a quick thought I sent GGirl to go grab plastic plates.  And we were out the door.  On time.  

All in a morning with small children.  I wouldn't trade it for anything -except maybe the cup of coffee that I never got this morning, yawn.

Monday, January 12, 2015

New Cooking Adventures

2014 began my gluten-free life. The health benefits for me have out-weighed the sacrifice of many favorite foods.  I've found GF alternatives to many of the necessities, a girl needs her brownies and chocolate chip cookies.  Most of my baing is centered around a pre-mixed bakin mix. For Christmas I was gifted a specialty GF baking cook book and I'm excited to explore a new way of baking!

Friday, January 9, 2015

A Boy and His Trains

Thomas the Tank Engine, Chuggington, any engine he can find is a new friend.   And if the engine pulls musical cargo, its only better!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The Cost of a Clear Day

The river valley where we live sees as many cloudy days as Seattle.  In the winter it is dreary and it gets old.  My psyche still longs for the 360 days of sun a year that we had during our time in Colorado and Southern California.  On the occasion that we have a clear day, we pay for it in temperatures.

I've enjoyed my morning walks because it gives me a sense of accomplishment first thing in the morning for having dragged myself out for the walk before 8am,   a sense of strength that comes from completing a physical challenge (drive up my hill, you'll see what I mean!) and it feels good to know that for 38 mintues in the morning, I get to take care of me, before meeting the demands needs of my children and getting caught up in the tasks of the day.

But when the temperature drops, it was not as enjoyable.  And by "temperature drop" I mean the nostril-freezing, crunchy coat cold.  I often opted out of the cold morning walks mostly because I didn't have good cold weather gear.  That changed this week.  A friend gifted me an REI gift card that was converted into thick fleece running pants and SmartWool socks.

This morning I walked.  My face was cold, but the rest of me was warm and I'll have a better day for it.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Modern Art

GGirl was gifted a scratch art kit for Christmas and has spent hours scratching away creative masterpieces.  With a humored glint in his eye and a bit of excitement in his step, Handyman pointed out one of the newest pieces of art to be added to our collection.  "It's 21st century modern art!" he raved.  "GGirl, tell your mom what it is!"

"A high-heeled boot that stepped in dog poop" she replied with a proud grin.

There you have it folks, coming to an art museum near you!