Sunday, December 21, 2008

More fun



We've had some more December fun! Caroline loves helping me in the kitchen. I love finding little tasks for her to do. She takes her job very seriously!

My friend Bryn and I took the girls down to the Peabody hotel to see the ducks march. It was so fun to see how excited the girls got when the ducks got off the elevator. Then we watched some older kids from our church play Christmas songs on their violins. It was a beautiful morning and we girls loved every second.

We went to Zoo Lights again this year with a group of friends. It was cold, but we still had a great time. I think everyone's favorite part was the quick train ride through the petting zoo.

We want to wish everyone a very merry Christmas! We pray that your hearts and homes will be filled with the joy and peace and hope that can only come from our Savior - the Christ child. He was born for each of us - what an incredible gift from God!

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
-Isaiah 9:6

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas village

We were invited to go to a Christmas village with some friends. It was great fun for the girls, but way too crowded and over-stimulating for the adults! The sacrifices we make for our small ones... Everyone's favorite part was the snow pit. It was madness in there. And I don't know what the snow was made out of, but it was almost impossible to get out of Caroline's hair! I'm still finding snow. I had good intentions of taking lots of pictures. But the kids were moving way too fast to stand still for a photo!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The past couple of weeks



So we hosted Thanksgiving at our house this year and I took no pictures the day of. I did remember to get some photos of my floral arrangements the next day. I really enjoyed decorating and being hostess for a day. I told Kevin I may not be the greatest housekeeper, but I can set a nice table!

A couple of table decor tips:
  • Pick an easy "theme". Mine was lime green and brown. I love lime green and brown was the perfect fall contrasting color. Then I just looked for lime green and brown things - flowers, napkins, placemats, etc.
  • Use scrapbook paper for your placemats. It's cheap, easy, customizable, and disposable. Think of all the options for birthdays and other holidays...
  • Fresh citrus can freshen up and fill in any floral arrangement. I used little key limes cut in half. Lemons and oranges work well, too. You can either leave the fruit whole or cut it in half. Get some wooden picks from Michael's or Hobby Lobby. (Some picks also have wires on them so you can wire the fruit into your holiday wreath.) Jab the pointed end into your fruit and the other end into your arrangement or wreath. It will look pretty for about a week.
Just call me Martha!

Since Thanksgiving, we've been decorating (slowly) and gearing up for Christmas! We've got several fun things lined up. I just have to remember to take lots of pictures!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Still around

I don't know why I've neglected the blog. I haven't been taking as many pictures as I'd like. Sad... Sometimes I feel like we just go all the time. I'm glad this week will give us some time to relax and stay home. Relaxing is pretty high-up on my "to-do" list this week!

This was taken before school one morning. I was trying to get her to model the new jumper I made for her. (I can't wait to show you the Christmas dresses!) But she just wanted to cheese with Mommy. Oh, goodness. I love this girl so.


Here's Caroline at a friend's birthday party a few weeks ago. It was a cowboy/cowgirl party. Caroline loved wearing her boots and having braids in her hair. The hosts had a trailer with hay hooked up to a lawnmower for hayrides. Caroline went on every hayride John gave. She loved it.

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Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Sneak peek

Everything is perfect, beautiful, and right on track with G2! We are halfway there! We didn't get a good profile, which was a little disappointing. And we didn't find out the gender (by choice). Kevin promises he didn't look! Now I guess I need to pull Caroline's ultrasound pics out and see how they compare.


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Friday, October 31, 2008

Trick or treat



Caroline was really into Halloween this year. She had a costume party at school on Wednesday and got more candy than she did trick-or-treating tonight. We did some fun crafts here at home to celebrate. We carved pumpkins and even painted two little ones. I planned a spooky meal - mummy dogs, witch fingers, cobwebs, and ghost cakes. I was pretty pleased with myself over the silly meal plan. She had a great time saying, "Trick or treat! Happy Halloween!" at all the neighbors' houses. And then our little kitty helped hand out candy to the other kids.

I'm not sure how many trick-or-treaters we had this year. We always get a ton. Kevin got 1200 pieces of candy and gave out all of it - mostly two pieces at a time. I think he was a little more generous toward the end of the night.

Overall, it was such a fun Halloween for all three of us!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Little helper

Caroline helped me make pumpkin bread. Then she kindly offered to do the dishes.
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Friday, October 24, 2008

Itsy bitsy

Are you sick of the singing yet? I might find an agent and see if we can cut an album.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

More singing

I never tire of hearing her sing. Good thing she does it a lot these days!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Lazy daisy crazy

Here is Caroline's fall dress - finally finished! Hooray! I started working on it back in July, but then that pesky first trimester hit and I could hardly muster up enough energy to make dinner, let alone smock. When fall arrived, I kicked it into high-gear to get it done. I finished it last night, just in time for church today. I am very proud of the sunflower dress. Here's a little math problem for you: there are 32 sunflowers on the dress. Each sunflower is made up of 10 lazy daisy stitches. That equals 320 lazy daisies. Yikes.

This is the back of the dress. This is one of my favorite dress patterns because of the back.

Yes, it was a very sad morning for some reason. She was not going to smile at all.


I think she'll wear it to church every Sunday until Advent!
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Friday, October 17, 2008

Punkin patch

We took Caroline to a real pumpkin patch this year. It was so much fun and the pumpkins were very reasonably priced (much more so than at the "patches" in town). She loved looking for little ones just for her. But my favorite thing has to be that she says "punkin"!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Overheard

Kevin was playing with Caroline while she was in the bath. Caroline said, "Daddy! I'm trying to do some serious work here!"

What a goof! I wish playing in the bath were my serious work!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

St. Louis

We had a really great time last weekend in St. Louis with Kevin's sister, Emily. We did Grant's Farm Saturday morning. Then Aunt Emmy took Caroline to Build-a-Bear, where Caroline built a tiger. Apparently once the stuffing was in, Caroline immediately wanted to do a bear. Saturday night we had a wonderful meal on The Hill with Emily's boyfriend and his parents. I don't remember the restaurant, but the food was really good. Sunday, we took Caroline to the zoo, which was just as neat as I remembered. It's a huge zoo, so we'll have to go back to take in all the areas we didn't get to.

My camera battery died the minute we arrived, so all these photos are courtesy of Emily. Thanks, Em!

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Creativity

Caroline woke up one morning and her first order of business was building a nest. She kept talking about eggs and baby birds and nests. So we helped her fashion a nest out of blankies and gave her an Easter egg. She was so happy with her little nest. She played in it all day. I'm amazed at the workings of her little brain. We've never really talked about baby birds being in eggs. I'm guessing it's something she got from Word World. Regardless, I hope I am doing my best to foster her young, creative spirit. (And she had said egg started with "E" 2 seconds before I took the video - stage fright!)


Remember when Caroline liked a nest of a different variety?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

It's not what you think, Mimi and Papa

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No, we haven't suddenly become Longhorn fans. We're still saying, "Boomer Sooner!" around here--I promise! This is Caroline's new sign. She came up to me yesterday and said, "Look, Mommy! I did it! I love you so much!" (My family has always waved goodbye using the "I love you" sign and now I do it to her and Kevin.) I didn't even realize it was something she had been trying to do, which makes it even more endearing. Talk about tugging at my heartstrings... I got a silly video of her, too. It's hard to get video these days because she always wants to "see the movie."

Monday, September 15, 2008

Rain, rain

This was a couple of weeks ago when the remnants of one of the hurricanes came through. I sent Kevin and Caroline out to pick up dinner. She had a great time with her umbrella.

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Friday, September 12, 2008

Why we love wire-haireds

I had no idea Tigger liked balloons so much. I guess I should have known. About 5 minutes after I promised Caroline he wasn't going to pop it, he did. Good thing balloons are everywhere we go these days.


Thank you and all the details

Thanks so much for all the warm congratulations and love for little G2, as we have affectionately nicknamed him or her. We are, of course, very excited! I'm 12 weeks along, with a due date set for the end of March. Mornings are great, but afternoons and evenings are tough - tiredness and nausea make it hard to get dinner on the table some nights. It's getting better, thankfully, and I realize that it could be much worse.

And the thing that sometimes helps my stomach discomfort? Super bubble. Weird, I know. I hate the stuff under normal circumstances and think it's disgusting. But for some reason, it settles my stomach.

No, we won't be finding out the gender of this little one. Caroline's gender was a complete surprise to us. Kevin swears he never peeked during ultrasounds and I have to believe him. We'll have to hold him to the honor code this time around, too, especially since he's more experienced now!

We have told Caroline. I love how sweet, gentle, and attentive she is with other babies. I know some of the newness of G2 will wear off after he/she arrives and there will be moments of jealousy or frustration. So any tips on easing the transition are greatly appreciated. Overall, I think she's going to love being a big sister. I told her one day that there was a baby in Mommy's tummy. She looked at me and then looked at my tummy, contemplating. She said, "No. Just food."

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Beach week



We spent last week at the beach in Destin, FL. We were able to spend the week with our good friends, the Wilsons. I didn't take nearly enough pictures. We were just too busy relaxing! We've had a lot of fun vacations where we did lots of things. But I have to say that it was very nice to just go and do "nothing".

The girls hated the ocean on the first day (and the water was really rough). But by then end of the week, we could hardly get them out of the ocean. There were no seashells on the beach. So we bought some seashells and planted them for the girls to find. It was so cute. I forgot my camera on that beach trip, so I'll have to see if Bryn got any good ones.

Kevin and George went fishing one day and brought back some delicious red snapper. And, of course, Bryn and I hit the outlet mall one afternoon.

It was great that the girls could entertain each other. We all had a really great time.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Latest projects

First up, a second birthday gift for one of Caroline's very good friends. The shorts are fast and easy to make. And I found the perfect color tee-shirt to match at Target. It was in the boys' section, but there's nothing boyish about it now.



Some very good friends are expecting a little boy in late September. Since Mom and Dad both went to UT, I thought the orange polka-dot flannel was the perfect choice. That's a blankie, a long-sleeved onsie (it will fit perfectly through college football season), and a bib.


Lastly, two gift sets for two new babies - some more birdies and some sailboats.


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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Felt board and other stuff

We're taking a trip to the beach. The long car ride calls for some new activities for Caroline. So I made a felt board. It was very, very easy. I bought a cheap 8x10 canvas, 1/2 a yard of felt from a bolt, and tons of craft felt rectangles. I cut the felt to wrap around the canvas. Then I used my staple gun (so much fun) to attach it in the back. And the shapes are just free-handed from my imagination. This is the "summer day" set. I'm going to make a "sea scape" set and a shape set.


No new creation is perfect until the test user approves.


My sleeping beauty actually took a nap one afternoon! I thought the giant violet hippo made a perfect pillow.


And sometimes when I ask her to smile, I get this face instead. Her Aunt Emily must have taught her this one.

(Side note: Caroline's little dress is another that I made for her. It's strawberry pique with a lime green pique collar and shorts to match. I made it for picture day at school. I stayed up until midnight the night before because she just had to have something new and handmade for pictures. I know. I'm silly. I'll post her picture soon.)

I've got a couple more sewing projects to show you...
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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Wordle



Create your own Wordle. (I have wasted too much time trying to figure out why it's so small. Just click on it to see the full-sized version.)

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Busy summer week





We had a special guest visiting us last week - my niece Autumn came to stay with us! She came down for Vacation Bible School at our church. We really enjoyed having her. I had activities planned every day. At the end of the week Autumn said, "I don't want to go home!" I guess we were lots of fun!

Sunday, she came to church with us and helped decorate the room for VBS. Our VBS theme was the Wild West and it was so cute. My friend Lindy and I taught 1st grade. After decoration time, we went to the zoo. It was the best zoo trip ever. It was cloudy and not too hot, so all the animals were moving about and playing and having a great time.

Monday, we went to VBS. Then we painted pottery. I can't wait to pick up our creations! We also got to bring Autumn to music class.

Tuesday, there was more VBS in the morning. We came home for a rest, then went to a friend's house to swim.

Wednesday, we took Caroline to school and headed back to VBS. When we picked Caroline up, we went to the Children's Museum. The girls loved it. At one point, Caroline was crawling into a tunnel, turned back to me and said, "Mommy! This is so much fun!" Melt my heart...

Thursday was day 4 of VBS. We rested quietly in the afternoon and then filled up the pool in the backyard.

Friday, things were winding down (my energy, especially!). We finished VBS with a big ol' hoedown. Then we met Erin and Mimi halfway between Memphis and Mayfield.

Whew. I think I need a 3-day rest from all that activity! We stayed quite busy! It was a fun week and I was so glad Autumn could come and stay with us.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Independence Day parade



Our neighborhood association always has a fun parade on the 4th of July. It's so much fun to see all the kids with their bikes and scooters decorated. Caroline entered the parade this year with Daddy as her partner. I had to make a shirt for Caroline. I wound up using beads ("beans", as Caroline says) to make it a little more interesting. Our friend Richard always makes an outrageous creation for his girls - this year it was a real parade float, complete with real flowers and royalty sashes. It was incredible! Caroline had a great time. And Mommy and Daddy did, too! We finished the weekend by celebrating at KY Lake with Kevin's family. It was a very fun weekend!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Big birthday


Cooling off on the couch after the Redbirds game

Today I turned 30. And, honestly, it feels really good. No fears of aging here!

My mom and dad came down yesterday. Mom and I went to a Viking Culinary Institute cooking class while the guys and Caroline did some shopping at Sportsman's Warehouse. The cooking class was about grilling techniques and it was fantastic. The food we made was incredible - bacon-wrapped grilled shrimp; glazed chicken drummettes with 2 dipping sauces; zucchini, prosciutto roulades; tomato, goat cheese, basil grilled sandwiches; and grilled pound cake with caramel rum sauce. I can't wait to try out some of the recipes myself! You're all invited to the grilling party!

Today we went to church, where I had many well-wishes from dear friends. And as we were driving downtown to a seafood restaurant I love, we saw there was a Redbirds game this afternoon. So instead of going for fried shrimp (which, believe me, was a tough sacrifice for this lowcountry girl!), we ate a quick lunch at home and then headed to Auto Zone park to catch the game. The Redbirds won, which makes it even more fun.

We came home, relaxed, had more cake, and opened cards and gifts. Caroline had some definite ideas about what I should get. She told Daddy she wanted to get me a cake, candles, and a fork. And that's exactly what I got. Mimi helped out and brought the cake. Kevin took her to Pier One, where she picked out two lovely candles and a really pretty salad serving set. So sweet...

I've been richly blessed this past year. Actually, I've been richly blessed for 30 years. God has been so good to me. It is comforting to know He will continue to bless me. This verse is my prayer for myself today.

Surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD
forever.
-Psalm 23:6

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Deprogramming

This week has been a week of recharging - a deprogramming of sorts. Caroline has "summer break" from Mothers' Day Out and music class is on a short hiatus before the summer session starts. So that was good enough reason to cancel any other "things" on the calendar. I feel like we have been going, going, going since summer began. And most of our activities were fun things - lunch dates, plate dates, swim dates. But it was time for a break! I am so thankful for this lazy week! From one of my favorite Psalms:

Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
my body also will rest secure,
-Psalm 16:9


On to some sewing show and tell...

I love bringing dinner to families who have just had a baby. And I usually make a special gift set for the new arrival - an appliqu├ęd onsie and burp cloth. I was really surprised when a recent recipient called and commissioned 3 gift sets. All 3 were for boys. I hope these designs are cute for little boys. And I can't believe I'm going to get a little "mad money" from this fun project


A date


Kevin and I got a night out without Caroline last Friday. The radiology group at Methodist honors the seniors in the program every year with a nice dinner. It was really fun. It's exciting to think that Kevin will be one of the honorees next year.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Miss Pettigrew


I highly recommend light reading in the summer. It's just too hot to think about heavy plots. Plus, in case you fall asleep in the backyard hammock or on the beach, you don't have to struggle to remember what you read last!

I just finished this delightful book, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day. Set in the 1930s in London, it's a story about the governess Miss Pettigrew who gets a very lively new employer. It is witty, hopeful, and endearing. You can't help but love and root for dowdy Miss Pettigrew. It's a quick read - lots of fast dialog. The movie is coming out on DVD late this summer and I can't wait for Netflix to deliver it!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Birthday party, Father's day, and a funny





Caroline and I went to a little birthday party last Saturday. It was at a gym for kids. There were all kinds of miniaturized gym apparatuses for the kids to climb on. It was great. The best thing was this big bouncy air thing. Caroline loved it. So fun.

Father's day was sweet. Caroline really gets into presents and cards and "helping". We went to the pottery painting place a few weeks ago so Caroline could paint a mug for her Daddy. Then I had one of the girls in the store help me put Caroline's hand print on the mug. I didn't think Caroline was going to do it - she hates being dirty. But she thought it was so neat once it was on there. She actually pitched a small fit when we went back to pick up the mug because we weren't going to "do hand".

OK - now for the funny. Caroline loves Tigger. She calls him "my dog" or "my puppy" and is always trying to hug him or ride him or play with him. He's just now started figuring out she's fun to run around with. She helps me feed him every day - filling his bowl up with dog food and putting it down for him, saying, "There you go, buddy." Sunday on the way to church she told me she had asked Tigger if he wanted a cookie. I said, "What did Tigger say?" Without missing a beat, Caroline said, "He barked!" Duh - dogs don't talk, Mom! They bark! Kevin and I laughed and laughed about that one!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

School days



Caroline started school this week! We've enrolled her in a sweet little mother's day out program at a church not too far away from our house. She had the best day. Her teacher (Ms. Emily) filled out a report sheet that had all kinds of activities she had participated in - play-doh, puzzles, numbers, ABCs, colors, Spanish, playground... The sheet also said that she had a very good time sliding on the playground with her friends. She even took a nap there, which impressed me since naps are hit-or-miss at home. After I picked her up, we went to McDonald's to redeem our free ice cream cones from our last dentist visit. What a busy day! I'm so proud of her... She hasn't stopped talking about school (and the ice cream cone) since!

(As an aside, I made her dress - an adorable new apron dress with a little smocked birdie. I had a great time making this one. I hope I can make another before I have to return the pattern to my friend.)

Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorable Memorial Day


We had a fun-filled weekend! We went to a Redbirds game Sunday night. This is the first time since Caroline was a baby that we've been. She had the best time. She loved the music, the clapping, the wave, the people, the ballgame, the food... Her enjoyment made it that much more special for us. The game was long - 3 extra innings and we still lost by 1 run. The fireworks didn't start until almost 11pm - thank goodness for a good afternoon nap! The fireworks were the one thing about the game that she didn't really enjoy. But she still talked about them all the way home.

Here's a video of Caroline dancing to "Sweet Caroline". She danced and clapped anytime there was music. She had the best time.


Monday we went out to our friends' parents' house for a cookout. They live out in the country. It was great to get out of the city and enjoy some fellowship with friends. The favorite activity for the little girls was the swimming pool! The big boys got to shoot some skeet. So everyone got to relax a little bit.

Hope your weekend was just as good!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Two-year pictures

We had sweet Caroline's pictures taken last week. She wasn't really in the mood, but we forged ahead anyway. We actually wound up with a selection of photos that was much better than we had anticipated. I included one of the teary pictures just for fun.

Both of her outfits were made by me. The swing top is a dress from last year, but too short this year for her. So I made some shorts to go with it. The smocked dress is new - green and white micro-stripe with pink baby rick-rack on the sleeves and pink smocking. I'm so pleased with this dress. I got the inspiration from a dress in a children's clothing store. It had an $80 price tag. I didn't spend nearly that much!

Monday, May 12, 2008

The zoo again

This time we took Daddy with us! Thank goodness for our annual zoo membership!

Waiting for the sea lion show

Watching the sea lions

The polar bears were playing. It was so fun! They were chasing each other all over their habitat and then would jump in the water, making huge splashes.


Oh - and Caroline decided to give her pacies (pacifiers) to the baby giraffe at the zoo. We talked for days about how she's a big girl now and doesn't need them, that babies use pacies. And she agreed with all that. Kevin helped her write a very sweet letter to the baby animals at the zoo and then we delivered them in a little plastic baggie to the giraffes. Sleeping has been a little bit harder for her, but I'm confident that in a few more days all this will be behind us.
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