Monday, February 28, 2011

Happy Birthday John!!

Today is my husband's 33rd birthday. The past few weeks and especially last weekend have been so hectic that he didn't really want to do anything super special for today. Usually every year I make him homemade chicken parmesan, his all time favorite food. But since we had Olive Garden on Friday, Patrizio's on Saturday and he had Pizza with the guys yesterday he is over Italian food for a few days! Now I've got to come up with something else special to make him.

After gymnastics I had the girls paint him a picture. I meant to do this about a week ago, but things got crazy and it never happened. Which also means I didn't get the frames for them either. My idea is to print out a photo of them, and use their painting as the mat. Then I'll frame it so he can take them to work, his desk is pretty dreary. I also had the girls make a handprint for him to use as desk art. I hope I didn't just add too much to his workspace!

We called John at work this morning and the girls got to sing him Happy Birthday over the phone. They are finally getting comfortable with talking on the phone to family. They are still very quiet about it, but at least they say words instead of just waving at the phone!

 Izzie about to start her painting.

Maddie starting hers.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

PAMOM Silent Auction & Gala

 Maddie and Izzie about to go spend the night at Nanna and Popo's house.

I took too many pictures and they were loosing interest!

The evening started with John and I saying our goodbyes to Maddie and Izzie as Nanna and Popo whisked them away to a fun evening of fun without us. They got to go to Chucky Cheeses again. I told Nanna that had to be reserved for special occasions such as birthdays. Apparently spending the night is special too. Although they didn't think about the fact that it was Saturday night so I doubt they'll be going back on a weekend night. Mom said it was crowded!

As for John and I, after they said goodbye we had a little over an hour to primp and get beautiful. Then off to the Gala we went. The theme this year was Black & White Ball and it was done up with finesse. Everyone looked spectacular dressed to the nines. I wasn't sure how many ball gowns there would be but I wasn't the only one. John absolutely rocked his tuxedo. We had a great time mingling, gambling and drinking. Did I mention there was free wine, beer and peach bellinis? The party seemed to fly by and sooner than I wanted I knew it was time to go or I would turn into a pumpkin.

 My party dress
 I told you John looked amazing in his tux.

 Aren't we a cute couple?

 Me and my sweetie.

 Friends Ashley and her hubby Dustin.

 John and I at the event.

 Alison and me.

 John, Dustin, Garrett and Clay.

 The PAMOM Executive Board for 2010-2011. Melanie (President), Tina (Advisor), Carolyn (Treasurer), Laurie (Secretary) , Amanda (VP of Helping Hands) and Alison (VP of Membership).

Ripley had his bow tie on and was ready to rock the gala. Sorry, no dogs allowed pug dog! You look handsome though!

DFW Family Expo

 Izzie petting the baby cow.

 Maddie petting the cow.

Izzie climbing the bounce slide.
Yesterday morning John, the girls and I piled into the car and headed to the DFW Family Expo. My friend Alison was working the Expo and I knew several other friends who were attending. I really enjoyed getting out as a family and touring the Expo. I like going to festivals and that type of thing and it's been a long while since we've done one. That being said, the DFW Family Expo would have been REALLY cool if I was expecting my first baby. There was a LOT of baby stuff. Highchairs, baby carriers, cribs, play mats, strollers etc. They had bounce houses for the toddlers, but Maddie and Izzie were so overwhelmed with the crowd that they didn't want to bounce. Izzie finally decided to go down the bounce house slide and she tumbled head first down the very steep slide. Luckily she brushed it off and went down about five more times. They both pet a baby cow with John coaxing them. I did enter to win a bunch of contests so maybe I'll win something cool.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Dinner & Bowling... or not

John and I went on a double date tonight. It is fun to get out with other couples and (mostly) not talk about kids! We went to dinner with John's friend John and his fiance Carolyn. We met them at Olive Garden with plans to go bowling afterwards. We had a good time visiting, and I got to grill Carolyn about wedding plans. They've got a lot of it figured out but still are trying to debate where to go on their honeymoon. Which led to a fun discussion on vacations in general. Of course us girls were talking about beaches and horseback riding and cabin's in the woods. John and John went on about touring Egypt or Korea. Something about boys seems to have them turn away from the romantic aspect of a vacation and just be silly with it!

After dinner we headed to the bowling alley but apparently Friday is league night and the wait was extraordinary. We tried a second bowling alley with the same results so decided to just call it an early night with plans to get together again soon. I'm so glad John met Carolyn because now going out as a foursome is so much fun!

As for earlier in the day, the girls and I went to Kohls so I could buy some jewelry to match my dress for tomorrow night. I was a bit nervous taking them there because from previous experience the double stroller does not fit in their aisles. So I decided to try stroller free with them. I sort of feel like a mother duck with her flock behind me when I let them loose in a store. It can be quite nerve wracking even though for the most part they are really good. As long as they don't start dancing. That gets me everytime. If they start to dance or twirl they get SILLY and uncontrollable. It's hard to reign them back in once the sillies take hold. So I grabbed a cart with one child seat as we entered the building. My plan was that if one girl needed a time out I could put her in the cart. If both got crazy I could hold one and put one in the cart. I was a Momma with a plan! And sometimes that's all you need. They were terrific. They were looking at the jewelry with me, ohhing and awwing over each piece (one at a time, as specified by me!) and carefully matching where it went as they put it back to get their next piece. Then they started asking how much each piece cost. (Did I write about their money banks? I better go back and check.... but ever since they bought their first piggy banks money is very interesting.) One point Izzie picked up a bracelet and asked me how much it was. I absentmindedly looked at the price and told her. She then said, "It is very pretty, but it's too expensive." And then she put it up.

They were really getting into the shopping experience. Then I took them over to the little girl's section and they had fun with all the clothes. They of course wanted every outfit (they are my daughters!) But they were okay to leave with two little summer outfits each. It was a fun shopping experience. They did get a very small case of the sillies as I was checking out, but luckily I was able to usher them out the door and into the car before it got too crazy!

To my daughters

This morning the girls told me how life was going to be when they grow up. I figure in about twenty years when they are moving out on their own (hopefully) they'll want to read this.

Maddie told me she was going to live in a purple house with a purple car. But she was very careful to tell me that first she had to sell her white car. Oh, and her driveway was going to be really, really long so she can ride her bicycle.

Izzie said she was going to live in a pink house with a pink car. It'll be her first car she said.

I asked them if they were going to live in the same house when they grew up and they both said, "no." I asked why not and Izzie said very seriously, "Because my house is pink and Maddie's is purple." Of course! I asked them if they were going to have any pets. They both said that Jake (our cat) and Ripley (our dog) was going to live with them. When I asked how Jake and Ripley were going to live in both houses at the same time they weren't sure but they said maybe they could visit each other.

Sounds like a plan to me!

Photo Catch Up

 Izzie at Jake and Ford's birthday party.

 Ford, Izzie, Madison, Melanie and Sydney.

 Alison, Izzie and Madison.

 Maddie

 Jessica helping her kids, Payson, Hayden and Madison with the art project.

 I love this photo of all the kids singing Happy Birthday to Jake and Ford!

 The boys LOVED, LOVED the Monster trucks that Melanie and I bought them.

 I thought this was so cute, I walked into the living room one day to find Izzie cuddling with Teddy and her Dump Truck.

Mema told the girls a night time story every night just like she did when I was a little girl.
 
 Maddie and Izzie working on puzzles. We were trying to stay quiet while the rest of the family was still sleeping.

 Picnic at Avalon, my Uncle's event facility. Here is Mom, Mema and Pepaw.

 Izzie, Momma and Maddie.

 Mema, Izzie and Pepaw.

 Mema
 Pepaw
 Izzie at Avalon
 Mom cooking porkchops one night. Mom and I made a big dinner for everyone so Mema wouldn't have to cook for us. We made Sweet and Sour Pork Chops, Potato au gratin and greenbeans. It was terrific!

Izzie and Maddie at an impromptu table. This was moments before Izzie's big meltdown due to exhaustion from a very, very busy day!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Boiled Toes

I am very much looking forward to the upcoming weekend! Tomorrow night John and I are going to go on a double date with our friends John and Carolyn. We're going to go to dinner and bowling. John and I used to go bowling once a week before the girls were born, now it's more like once a year! But whever we do get a chance to go we have a good time. Saturday morning we are going to the DFW Family Expo. One of my friends, Alison is working the Expo and I know I'll see lots of other people I know. It's supposed to be a cool event with lots of freebies and give-aways.

Then Saturday evening we drop the girls off at Nana's house and they are going to spend the night while John and I go to the PAMOM Gala and Silent Auction. I'm really looking forward to it since it's a Black & White Ball. Most people are going to be in cocktail attire but John and I are going to wear a ball gown and tux. It is a dress I wore for a Christmas party a few years ago and John bought a tux a while back too. Since we don't get much occasion to really dress up, the Gala is a fun excuse to go all out. I can't wait!

As for today, we just hung around the house and then Melanie came over with Madison and Sydney for a while. All four of the kids SWOOPED down on the Princess Castle collection that the girls have. Grandma and Grandpa bought them two castles for Christmas and I've bought two more. This has been a HUGE hit toy around this house**. The problem is that now there are three castles and one Tinkerbell "teapot" house. It is NOT a castle and all the kids were fighting over the three castles. No one wanted the teapot. I actually think it's a flower, but the girls call it a teapot. Anyway, that got smoothed over and all was good.

It's awesome to see the girls really start to play with their friends. The two Maddie's went upstairs to play for awhile with the dollhouse and Izzie and Sydney stayed downstairs to play together. That seems to a be a consistent pairing for the four of them. It's good to see that they are making their own individual friends within a group.

The only other news of the night is that I dumped boiling water on my foot tonight while cooking dinner. I'm okay, I was very lucky. I ended up with a very sore foot and spent the evening limping. Now it's settled down into two red spots and luckily they didn't even blister. My first thought was that I better be able to wear my fancy shoes to the Gala! Maddie was very concerned about me all evening and she kept giving me lots of hugs and kisses to make me feel better. She has such a sweetness about her, she always shows concern when others are hurt. Oh, and by the way... I didn't drop the noodles so dinner was saved!

**UPDATE: 4/7/11 About a month and half later from this original post. I would NOT recommend these castles. The two that I've bought (Ariel and Cinderella) now will not stay together. The hinge is very cheap and pops open at the barest touch. The Ariel castle all the turrets fall off constantly. The girls love this toy but it is more than frustrating for them that it breaks so easily. 

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Ketchup Smoothie (just kidding!)

We were only gone for three nights but I'm still finding it hard to get my groove back after visiting Mema and Pepaw this last weekend. Not to mention John was off yesterday so we were still in "vacation" mode when we got home. I kept thinking yesterday was Wednesday instead of Tuesday and who knows what the actual date is! As of right now we have no plans for today although Melanie did just text me to see if I was interested in going to the mall with her. In theory that sounds like a good idea, but it would require getting dressed, getting the girls dressed and digging the stroller out of the garage. We don't use the stroller much anymore these days except for the rare day we spend strolling around a mall.

I think the overcast day has me wanting to stay inside and be cozy. Not to mention, my kitchen is fairly clean which always has me wanting to go in there and experiment. I do need be a little better about labeling. This morning I almost made the girls a ketchup smoothie! Eww! I had one bag of frozen pureed fruit and honey that I had in ice cubes and another bag of frozen homemade ketchup. I had completely forgotten about the frozen ketchup (which really annoys me considering I just made a new huge batch two days ago!) So this morning when Izzie asked me to make her a smoothie I pulled out two red ice cubes and threw them in the bottom of the magic bullet. But luckily I got a whiff of them and even frozen they most decidedly did NOT smell fruity. It took me a minute but then I realized it was ketchup. I think organizing my freezer needs to surface to the top of my to-do list.

Speaking of organizing... last night I won a 3 hour consultation for a home organizer at the PAMOM online auction. I have really been wanting to attack my art room and make it more efficient but I'm at a loss of where to even begin in there. Normally I wouldn't be one to hire an organizer but since I got a really good deal at the auction I figured, why not? I also won a swim class for one of the girls and 2 hours of Mike the Maintenance guy's services. I planned on hiring him soon to paint my stair well so the fact that I saved $30 on his services made my night. I also go the swim lessons for around $60 off, I think. I've never really participated in an auction before and I really got excited when someone and I got into a bidding war!

Well I have so much more to say and share, not to mention photos to upload, but I have been talked into going to the mall, so I better get the girls and I ready to face the outside world!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Mema and Pepaw's house

Today has been a full day of playing and visiting at Mema's house. The girls have been having such a good time. This morning Mema started playing doctor with them and the game lasted for a couple of hours. I wanted Mema to look at my hurt toe so she made it all elaborate getting out rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, a magnifying glass, flashlight, bandaide and other medical supplies. She played doctor and called the girls Nurse Izzie and Nurse Maddie. They had to hold up the flashlight and magnifying glass for her. It was pretty good care for a toe injury! Well after that they weren't done playing doctor so Mema helped them bandage up their baby dolls and then she gave them lotion in a dixie cup and a q-tip. They dipped the q-tip in the lotion and rubbed it on any old boo boo they could find on anyone willing to sit still. Then they moved on to freckles. When we were all lotioned up they turned to each other to "fix." they really had a good time.

At one point during the morning we were playing outside and my cousins started to stop by. We had Mema and Pepaw, their daughter (my mom) Karen, then there was me with my girls. My cousin Dustin stopped by with his girlfriend and their two kids, then my cousin Dereck came by with one of his kids. Last was my cousin Casie. We had 2 Great Grandparents, 1 Grandma, 4 grandkids, and 5 great grandkids present at ome point.

The girls got worn out enough that they did take a nap. Then Mema, Pepaw, my mom, me , Maddie and Izzie went to Cracker Barrell for dinner. Tomorrow our plans include a picnic at Avalon, my uncles wedding facility.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Toddler Talk

The other day I was using the Voice to Text feature on my cell phone. You speak out your text message and the phone types it out. I do this sometimes because the keyboard annoys me. Anyway, if you say "period" "question mark" "comma" or whatever it'll actually put your punctuation in for you. It's pretty cool really.

I was leaving a text message for a friend and Maddie overheard me. It took her awhile to think about it I guess because a few minutes later she asked me what "peer-NE-ad" meant. I was completely and utterly confused. I asked her where she heard the word. She told me I said it. I asked her when. (Enough time had passed that my mind was completely off my text message and on to other things.) She told me, "You said it to your phone!" I thought about it and I repeated what I had said in the text message. When I was finished Maddie said, "Yes, you said that then you said peer-NE-ad! What does peer-NE-ad MEAN????"

It finally dawned on me that she was saying period! I was so excited to have figured that out. Then I had to figure out HOW do you explain to a three year old what punctuation is? We got out a book and talked about it until she was satisfied. Who knows what she took away from our discussion... but it was cute!

I love how my girls will ask me what a word is that they don't know. We talk about vocabulary all the time. I love hearing words like initiative and responsibility stumble out of their little mouths!

Day at Grandma and Grandpa's

Yesterday Maddie and Izzie got to spend the whole day at Grandpa and Grandma's house without mommy or daddy! Let me tell you they were so excited! Grandpa was scheduled to come pick them up at around 9:30. (I know right... they spent the whole day there AND my wonderful in-laws picked them up so I'd have even more time!) Anyway, around 8:30 Maddie looks at me and says, "How much longer until we get to leave??" I told her about an hour and she sighed really big and said, "Ohhhhhkaaay."

When Grandpa came I loaded them int he car and with hardly a kiss goodbye they were off. When John got home from work, we went to go pick them up together and they had a bunch of stories to tell about parks, and ducks (it was too windy to go feed the ducks) and picnics and sandboxes and and and! They had so much to say. I'm glad a fun day was had by all! Here's the photos that Grandma sent my way:

 Grandpa and Maddie playing on a swinging bridge.

 Isn't this the cutest? Izzie, Grandpa and Maddie.

 Izzie, Maddie and Sabrina

 Julie and Sabrina joined everyone for a picnic lunch.

 Maddie

 Maddie. Apparently the girls made Grandma crawl through this tunnel. Funny how there is no photo of that!

 Maddie and Izzie.

Izzie

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Murder Mystery Dinner at Dave & Busters

 Daddy and Izzie at Madison and Sydney's 3rd Birthday Party.

 Daddy, Izzie and Maddie playing at The Gymnastics Place, where the Davis twins celebrated their 3rd birthday!

 Izzie, Daddy and Maddie showing off on the balance beams.

 CAKE! YUM. Izzie and Maddie.

 The birthday girls, Sydney and Madison.

 Maddie at gymnastics. Coach Steve is rolling her and Gabe.

 Maddie was riding her bike. She saw a flower, jumped off and ran to give it to me. She always stops to smell the "roses!"

 Maddie and Izzie playing a bowling game for the first time that Unka D and Auntie Rebecca gave them for Christmas two years ago!

 Izzie and Maddie
 Nanna and Popo stopped by to give the girls Valentine's presents. Here is Izzie and Popo.

Izzie, Maddie, Popo and Nanna. The weather was so nice, we just stayed out side playing, biking and visiting before dinner time!

I feel like a broken record when I say that I've been busy lately. But I really have been! It's been a fantastically full time of year for us. Saturday the girls were invited to Madison and Sydney's 3rd birthday party. We spent lunch with them on Friday, but that was a close group of friends. Saturday was the big sha-bang party. It was a gymnastics place and the kids all had a good time.

Saturday night John took me to Dave & Busters for Valentine's Day. We played the games a bit before our dinner. We were there for the Murder Mystery Dinner. We had a good time watching the crazy actors and trying to figure out the murder. John is usually really good at solving mysteries, but we got this one wrong. Although I do agree with him that their solution had holes and our solution was better!

Sunday we didn't have any formal plans but the day was filled up with cleaning house. John had the guys come over for D&D and I met Melanie at Target to look for a birthday gift for Jake and Ford who turn three on Friday. We decided to go in together and each get them a Monster truck toy. This way they got a bigger gift, but they each got one so as not to fight over them.

Monday Izzie woke up with a tummy ache. I could tell she wasn't feeling well especially when she didn't eat any breakfast. I asked her if she wanted to go to gymnastics and she said no. Luckily Mom was home so I dropped Izzie off at Nanna's house and just took Maddie to class. I didn't want Maddie to have to miss it. I was worried that Maddie would want to stay at Nanna's house too, but it turned out her concern was just for Izzie. She told me she was worried about sissy and she didn't want to be away from her. I explained that Nanna and Popo would take really good care of Izzie and that it was okay for her to go to class without sissy this time. She finally was okay with the situation and ended up having fun at class. Izzie got to watch The Wizard of Oz for the first time with Nanna and Popo. The funny thing was when I asked her what she did at Nanna's she told me she watched a movie about a dog. Later when I talked to Mom about it, she said Izzie was really interested in Toto throughout the entire movie! How funny is that! I never watched Wizard of Oz from Toto's perspective before.

Tuesday we went to... (oh wait.... that's today!) Haha... it's been a LONG day! This morning we went to Alison's house to celebrate Ford and Jake's birthday. The girls had a really good time playing and doing a fun sticker craft. This age, the kids LOVE stickers!! The weather was so nice that they got to play outside a bit too. The kids were having so much fun and the grown ups were visiting I almost forgot to leave in time to get the girls down for nap! But we made it home and although Izzie didn't sleep she got some quiet time. Then spontaneously we decided to go get some pizza for dinner with Nanna and Popo. It was a fun full day.

Tomorrow Grandma and Grandpa are going to come by and pick the girls up so they can spend the entire day over there. Maddie and Izzie are very excited to do that! I'm a bit excited too. I plan on spending the day doing some deep cleaning and organizing. I have a feeling my peaceful day is still going to be a tiring one! I can't wait to see the house sparkle and shine though!