Thursday, August 28, 2008

Bag = Bag-um

Maya's new pronunciation key:









Apparently she is a little old Italian man.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Gumballs for Nuks

About a week ago, we decided Maya should be finished with her Nuks. She started wanting them more than just at bedtime, and started relying on them anytime she was cranky or slightly cranky, or thought about being cranky. Maya also likes gumballs. Loves them, really. So I thought of a great plan. Nuks for gumballs. We collected all of her Nuks, I think there were twelve. I bought a bag of gumballs, got the Nuks and a trash can. We headed outside and Maya got down to business. She gave each Nuk a goodbye trip to her mouth and then pitched it in the garbage in return for a gumball. This went on until the Nuks were all gone, and then I gave her the bag of gumballs. Needless to say she forgot about the Nuks...until naptime. She told me that she didn't want the gumballs anymore, that she wanted her Nuks back. I told her that she was a big girl and didn't need them anymore. She wasn't sold and there were many tears and fits at bedtime for the next three days, but I gave her gumballs when she woke up to reward her for finally going to sleep. Exactly like when we did 'cry it out', it lasted three days and she hasn't looked back. She will proudly tell you that she is a big girl and doesn't need a Nuk anymore. There has been a lot less whining and complaining since the transition. I am so glad we did it now.

Where Has the Time Gone?

I had one of those days today when I looked at Maya and realized my baby is no longer a baby. She has thinned out, almost as if someone had put her in a stretching machine last night. We were having some quick Mommy and Maya time, a walk down the street to the candy store, when I realized it. She was sort of skipping along ahead of me and I did a double take. I swear she grew in less time than it took to travel half a block. I cannot believe time has gone so fast, and that she can keep up with everyone so well. I did give her a ride home on my shoulders, and I think that she enjoyed it as much as I did. She had the greatest belly laugh on the way back to the house, the same one she had when she was a baby.

Here We Go Again

So, a family friend stopped by this past weekend. We haven't seen her in a long time, and I am sure the girls don't remember her at all. This is the exchange that happened when Allie saw her walk through the gate in the yard.
Linn: Hello!?
Allie: (staring intently into Linn's face) "do you know Jesus?"
Linn: "well, I've heard the name."
Allie: "Yep, you know Jesus."
Linn: "you want some donuts?"
Allie: "sure."

So I say to Al later, "why did you ask Linn if she knows Jesus?"
Allie: "because she knows Jesus."
Me: "Why do you think she knows Jesus?"
Allie: "because she's special, and she knows him."

Well, I guess that clears that up. Incidentally, Linn claims never to have met the man.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

A Cocktail No One Should try

Maya walked into my room just now with a glass of water.
Maya: "Daddy, I got a glass a water fa you."
Daddy: "Oh, thank you Maya!"
Daddy drinks the water and promptly begins retching
Daddy: "where did you get this and how long has it been there?!"
Mommy: (through gales of laughter, and only because we had had a conversation about this earlier today)
"Maya, did you get that water from the fish bowl?"
Maya: (nodding head and looking appropriately offended) "yah, I get that from fish bowl"
Daddy: "Great, thanks for that."

Friday, August 22, 2008

Sweet Interpretations

My Grandmother is a very religious person. We are not, for no other reason than we just haven't ever been. I feel like I am a fairly spiritual person, but not religious, if that makes sense. This really is not here nor there, but it makes for a good background understanding to the story. My grandma always talks to the kids about church and tells them stories from the Bible, and talks about the people. We go to church with her when she visits, or when we visit her, and the kids like to look around the church. Allie, specifically has become extremely focused on The Blessed Mother. My Grandma gave her a crystal statue of The Blessed Mother, she has a Blessed Mother nightlight, and really likes to talk about her. When we were in church over my Grandma's last visit, Allie kept asking when The Blessed Mother was going to get there. Hey, she's three, it's kind of obscure to her. So last night, we were at a school function at Lilly's new school, and Will was pushing Allie on the swings. There were bunches of people all over the place. I was half way across the playground when he waved me over to them. He said, "Allie, tell Mommy what you see." She got really quiet and I swear her eyes were smiling and sparkling. She called me over really close to her face and said, "Look,'s The Blessed Mother and the baby!" There was a woman wearing a long head covering, caring for a small baby. She really believed in her sweet almost-four-year-old mind that that was The Blessed Mother, right there on that very playground. I love how everything is possible for her.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Making Pasta with Great Grandma

My Grandma came to visit two weeks ago. She lives about two hours from us, and does not like to leave home. She likes us to visit her and she will come here occasionally, generally at Christmas and one other time around summerish. She came to the US from Italy with my Grandpa when she was 20 (I think) and started a family. She is an amazing cook, and one of the reasons she came to visit was to teach the girls to make fresh, homemade pasta. Let me just say, I took about 200 pictures of the entire process, and am turning it into a book for the kids and my grandma for Christmas. The recipe (as told by her) is; one egg per two people, and two serving spoons full of flour per egg. We made 8 eggs of pasta that day, more than she said she has ever made at one time. The girls got to use the pasta machine, crack the eggs, and eat the finished product. It was one of those memory days that will stand out forever. Here are a few pictures of the process.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Family Fun

We went to Rhode Island this weekend for a farewell party for my sister in law Paula, and her family. They are a NAVY family and will be moving on this winter. Paula knows how to throw a party. We have all agreed that she should be a party planner. There was a fiesta theme, complete with limbo, homemade tortillas, Margaritas, music, and sombreros. We had a blast. There was also a bounce house, which for anyone expecting many children at a party, is a sanity saver. You always know where the kids are, and it saves you from the dreaded "party chase" of your youngest mobile child. They live right on the water, so the beach was also a big draw, and Uncle Jon took the kids on multiple trips around the water in their row boat. The weather was perfect, and everyone had a great time. Maya didn't have as much fun as the rest of us, as she sustained two injuries. The first one was definitely a first. She was eating fruit on a skewer, and directed the pointy part into her mouth. Being the helpful Mommy that I am, reached for the skewer as to save her from injury, and instead stabbed her in the back of the throat. Not good. I have never heard her cry (after the longest silence of unbreathing scream build up) like that before. Nice. Maya's first popsicle of the day. After that episode she crashed for about an hour and a half, probably hoping her luck would change when she woke, but that was not the case. After her nap, she decided to jump some more in the bounce house, and promptly put her two bottom teeth through her top lip. Blood everywhere. Will was carrying her, running to get me, but because of the layout of the party in relation to the house, her was running and I was chasing behind, he couldn't hear me yelling for him because of the screaming and the festive music. It would have been comical, except it wasn't. Finally I cut a corner and sort of jumped around him, and he starts saying (once he sees me)" it's worse than it looks! It's worse than it looks!" Which freaks me out because she has blood streaming across her face and down her arm. I looked at him and he must have realized he misspoke, because he quickly said, "it's not as bad as it looks." Okay, we can deal with this. We mopped her up, and discovered that she had put her bottom two teeth through her top lip. Lovely. Another popsicle for Maya. After a while, we went back to join the party, and to try and get all of the cousins to pose for a picture. It wasn't easy, but I managed to get a great shot where all seven kids are; looking up, smiling, eyes open, generally looking amused. It took about sixty attempts (thank god for digital cameras)and Will spitting mouthful after mouthful of water into the air, but I am very happy with the results. It was a great weekend, and the girls are already asking when they can go back.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Funny Shot

Maya was fooling around with her Nana's glasses, and this was the result...

too funny!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Old Friend New Friend

We got to hang out with one of my favorite people yesterday. We don't see each other much, as she lives about ten hours away (by car) from us, but when we do get to it is a lot of fun. Alex and I have been friends since we were fourteen. We met riding horses and spent countless hours at the barn in freezing winters and sweaty summers. We have remained friends through college, my marriage and the birth of my children, (one of whom is named for her) and now, we get to be friends through her wedding and all that leads up to that. Alex has found the one. I have had the pleasure of meeting him, and I definitely approve (because you know that matters). I am so happy for her, because she is so happy and comfortable and herself with him. He seems like a sweet man who loves her because of who she is and how they feel together. Plus, her dog is crazy about him and we all know that is important. So we all got together at her parent's house, and got to be ourselves and eat, drink, and play with all of the kids of friends and family. Alex and J were engaged only three days ago, so wedding plans have been only minimally discussed, but I can't wait to see how it ends up, but knowing Alex it will be simple and take your breath away all at the same time. I hope they have all the love and trust in each other that it takes to make it, and I wish them all the happiness there is. I am looking forward to many more days with her and to making a new old friend in J.

Friday, August 8, 2008

New Haircuts

Lilly and Maya got haircuts on Wednesday. I LOVE them...and their hair. Allie opted to keep her hair long, as princesses have long hair. Maya got the last of her scraggly baby hair trimmed off, and now looks like she is way older. Lilly got her short "it stays out of my eyes this way" haircut, which I think looks fantastic on her. Here are pictures, the best I could do since Maya wanted no part of having her picture taken, and one of Allie just because she is so cute.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Jelly Beans

I walked downstairs a few minutes after the girls this morning. I usually do this, so I thought nothing of it. I walked into the playroom to find Maya sitting on the floor with a bag of jellybeans. She had pulled a chair over to the counter, climbed up, and found the jellybeans that we bought two days ago. Apparently she thought they'd make a nice breakfast. I couldn't take them away right away, she had put in so much effort to get them, so I snapped a quick picture. I told her she could have one more and them she had to give me the bag. Amazingly, she followed directions perfectly and gave them up happily. I am sure she was probably ready to be done, or it wouldn't have gone so smoothly, but I will definitely take it. Oh, and note the shoes...she dressed herself.

Monday, August 4, 2008

My First 10k

I ran my first 10k this weekend. It was amazing, and I see how people could become addicted to racing. I am definitely not racing when I am out there, just running, but still...
It was awesome. People lined the streets for the entire course. Seriously, there was never a section of road that was without cheering, clapping, smiling spectators. I found it amazing that so many people came out to cheer all of the runners on. One of my very best friends waited at the end of her road and I have never seen her so jumpy, clappy, cheery, teary in the whole time I have known her. I found the race to be a super emotional time, which I did not expect. I ran with my Dad the entire race. He let me dictate the pace (which was very slow) and just stayed by my side. It was a beautiful course with peeks at the ocean and beautiful trees and flowers along the way. The end of the course was very hilly, and by that time, I cursed those hills. The last one was particularly difficult for me, but I made it up and over. The finish was through a state park, and at the end of the chute after the finish line I saw my girls, Will, and my Mom. What a nice thing to see after a long, hard run. Thinking of their faces was just what I needed to get through the last little bit of race. The weather was perfect for a race, 65, foggy with a little breeze. I was grateful for no sun that day. It feels wonderful to have accomplished a 6.2 mile race after only having run a few months, and I can't wait for next year to see how much faster I will be then. I am planning for it already.