Friday, April 29, 2011

The Wedding

I wasn't going to get caught up in the Royal Ruckus.

I mean, sure, I peeked at the tabloids when I was at the grocery store.  And okay, I watched the Lifetime movie on TV the other night.  Well, I guess I did program my DVR to record the wedding... just in case.

Okay, I was a goner from the start.  But when you sit down to watch the Royal Wedding with two little girls, you kind of don't have a chance.
When I told the girls earlier this week that a real prince would be marrying a girl who would become a princess, they couldn't believe it.  We were eating dinner and Addie literally froze and dropped her fork just as it reached her mouth, and said, "Are you serious?  This is so... ex... CITING!!!" (Can't you picture it?)

We didn't watch the wedding live, but as we watched the recorded wedding coverage in the early hours of the morning, the girls' sleepy eyes didn't take long to light up.  We witnessed the throngs of people surrounding Buckingham Palace awaiting the first kiss (on live TV by then), and Addie turned to me, teary-eyed and said, "Oh Mommy, I wish I was there with all those people!" and Emma flatly replied, "They could've just watched it on TV."  Oh, how I laughed!  Although they were both glued to the festivities, they couldn't be more different.

I wasn't going to get caught up in it.  I certainly didn't ever intend to blog a single word about it.  But I'm sitting here tonight watching it again (I know, I know!) and can't get enough.

It's the crowds...

the flags
the beautiful (and sometimes ridiculous) hats
the feathers
the pomp and pageantry
the accents
the waving
the music
the bells
the uniforms
the curtsies
the carriage!

And the DRESS!  Her dress... was absolutely gorgeous.  I loved watching Kate and Pippa interact.  I also loved when Prince Harry took a sneak peek at Kate walking down the aisle and grinned at William and whispered something.   I think Kate is just darling, and she and Prince William really seem to love each other and be best friends.  

But more than all of the perfect details, it's a beautiful story.  Kate Middleton is the first commoner in 350 years to marry a future king.  She entered Westminster Abbey a woman like me and left as royalty.  Isn't that like every princess movie ever made?  I love that it's given my girls the chance to dream.  (After thinking it through out loud, Addie sadly figured out that Harry will probably be married by the time she's old enough to marry.)

How lucky are we who know the Lord to be in the same boat?  I've been plucked from my ordinary life by the King of Kings, so that I might be live a life of royalty as His daughter.  I might not get whisked away in a carriage every day, and I might have to do my own laundry and cook my own meals, but I know hope and grace and joy that no royal wedding can match.  And besides, I married Gary, who is WAY cuter than Prince William anyway.

And did you catch that little girl in the lefthand corner? Oh, what a riot!  I was so distracted by the royal smooching that I didn't notice until later.  I hope her mum thinks it's as cute as I do.

Gary's out of town right now, so I won't be deleting the wedding from the DVR until he can watch it.  I know he'd be absolutely crushed if he didn't get a chance to watch it in its 6 hour entirety.  Until then, cheerio!

Monday, April 25, 2011


I'm in the midst of cleaning up the aftermath of Easter weekend.  Dyed eggs have been thrown away (we didn't refrigerate them... oops), candy wrappers have been picked up, Easter decorations are being packed up for next year and the kids are coming off of their sugar highs.  
The middles are sitting next to me peacefully playing with play-dough while I type and sip my Dr. Pepper.  I have three things to post about today:

In case you were wondering how it all turned out, the Easter Bunny made a surprise visit on Saturday.  The kids weren't expecting it AT ALL, so when they walked into the kitchen and spied their filled baskets on the kitchen table - the very table we'd eaten breakfast at an hour earlier - they were stunned.

When they questioned why the bunny came early, I just said that I'd "heard" that the bunny might be coming early this year because he wanted Jesus to be the focus on Easter Sunday instead of him.  They didn't even question it.  I even took it a step further and pointed out that the bunny had left their baskets on the kitchen table, around our Hill of Calvary.  So clearly, the bunny wanted Jesus to be the main point - the center - of the weekend.  Quick thinking on my part, because this year's Easter Bunny had never left baskets before and didn't realize that they're ALWAYS on the coffee table in the other room.  Ha ha!

I didn't get pictures (doh!), but they were simple baskets, with just a few M&Ms and jellybeans, 2 pencils, a notepad, and sunglasses for the girls and a firetruck for the boy.  They loved it and never even asked where their annual rabbit was.  You know, the one that would be forgotten by today.  Good choice.  

What a wonderful day!  I loved hearing my girls' little voices saying, "He is risen!" "He is risen, indeed!" back and forth to each other all morning.  They were thrilled to discover the empty tomb on our Hill of Calvary.  
We went down to my parents' house for Easter dinner with my family, complete with an indoor Easter egg hunt, thanks to the usual Colorado Easter rain/snow. 
Crazy Hair Day, Take Two!  With a little hesitation, Addie let me give her crazy hair for the second Monday in a row.  She looked AWESOME! 
 After last Monday's FAIL, she was skeptical, but thought we could do better.  This time we added bows and a touch of pink (thanks to Kool-Aid).   
 "Hey Addie," I joked. "Today's not actually Crazy Hair Day either... it's next week!" 
I guess my joke wasn't funny.  She even made me show her on the calendar that it was today.
She came home from school all smiles, and very relieved that her friends (including her buddy Cam) even joined in the fun this week.   
Now she wants to have pink hair all the time.  Maybe I'm back in the running for Mom of the Year after all!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Dyeing Eggstravaganza

My sister and I (and our combined six kids - oh yeah, our kids were totally involved and fully engaged the entire time.  I promise this was not OUR project.  Yeah right.) dyed Easter eggs for more than eight hours yesterday.


We were eager to try our hand at tie-dyeing our eggs like last year, but threw in a few "eggstra" methods as well.  We had a great time and no one wet their pants.  (Except the babies, but that's acceptable.)

Look, doesn't it look calm and serene?  It was not.  It was massively chaotic, both of the babies cried a majority of the time, but we'd do it all over again.  (And don't you always dress to the nines when dyeing Easter eggs?)
And here is the part where I show off what we did:

1.  Tie-Dyed Eggs... with silk ties
I won't take you through step-by-step.  There are great directions for tie-dyed eggs here.  But you have to see our results!
First, I bought a bunch of ties for 25¢ at a local thrift store.  Score!

Here they are again:


I know, hard to believe it took us 8 hours.
Anyway, here are the results:

A tip:  BE GENEROUS with the vinegar.  I think the instructions say 3 tablespoons.  We used just a tad (okay a ton) more than that.  It makes the colors more vivid!
I love that even the inevitable streaking from the folds make beautiful designs!  The bottom of this one looked like a flower!

I placed one of the medallions on the end of the egg and it turned out perfectly!

This one is my FAVORITE:

2.  Tie-Dyed Eggs... with food coloring
These were SO FUN (and we even let the kids join in on this one).  We didn't take step-by-step pictures, but it was easy.

  1. First, hardboil your eggs.  
  2. Then immerse an egg in vinegar.  Make sure it's well coated.  
  3. Then you place the egg in a colander and put one drop of food coloring on it.  We used liquid neon food coloring that Amy found at Walmart.  
  4. Roll the egg around for a few seconds to get a cool design.  Let it set for 30 seconds (that's important!).  
  5. Add another color and roll it around in the colander.  Let it set for 30 seconds.  
  6. You can add another color too, just remember that it can start looking muddy if you add too many colors.  
  7. Once your'e finished, lightly rinse with cold water and let it dry.  
  8. Awesome results!

3.  Dinosaur Eggs
This was a fun one, but we only did one.  Brody loved this one because it was destructive.  Just crunch up a hard-boiled egg.  Soak in dye for a few minutes to let it really penetrate the shell.  The dye seeps into the cracks.  Once you peel it, the egg looks veiny and creepy! So awesome!

4.  Rubber-band Eggs
This was another fun one that the kids loved, and super easy.  Wrap eggs in rubber bands.  Then you can dip them dye, take off rubber bands one at a time making the stripes different colors.  Pretty!

5.  Rubber Cement Eggs 

 This is our FAVORITE method and super duper easy.  You just drizzle rubber cement on the hard-boiled eggs and dye!  Gorgeous! 
The dye we used for these was from the regular PAAS egg dyeing kit, but we used the method to make them "vibrant" colors - using vinegar with the water (read the back of the box). 

 Aren't they gorgeous?

Despite dying 36 eggs yesterday (!), we're not done.  My kids and I are going to dye more before Sunday.  And Amy?  Well, she took all of the silk tie scraps home so that she can iron them, sew them together and make more.  Because clearly she has a lot of time one her hands with a newborn and a 4 year old.

As soon as she posts her creations, I'll link back to it here, so check back!  I'd love to know if you try these.  Happy egg dyeing!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

That Dream When You Go To School Naked

Addie's in preschool.
She loves preschool.
She's been waiting all year for Crazy Hair Day.
We spent time making her hair c-r-a-z-y yesterday.

Crazy, huh?

I drove her to school.
I joked that it wasn't really Crazy Hair Day.
She rolled her eyes and said, "Mooo-ooom!" like a 14-year-old.

 Guess what?
It wasn't Crazy Hair Day.
It's next Monday.

Addie cried.
And hid behind me.
And turned into velcro on my leg.
I unbraided her braids.
I took out the pigtails.
I untwisted the pipe cleaners.
I wiped her tears.
I assured her that no one besides Miss Cristina saw and she didn't need to be embarrassed.
Well, except the little girl who stopped in her tracks when she saw Addie.


I didn't promise not to laugh about with her Daddy later and blog about it.
Because it was funny.
Really funny.
Someday she'll think this is funny too.

I guess this isn't my year for mom-of-the-year afterall.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Weekend End

It's Sunday night, and as I'm writing this, I'm watching a play that Emma and Addie are putting on for me.  Now, I know it sounds really rude that I'm here typing away as they're performing, but seriously.  I think we're 27 minutes into this play and I'm not sure they remember they have an audience anymore.  They're making it up as they go.  Here, I'll take a picture so you can be in the moment with me:
Minute 28 of the Never-Ending Play:  Princess Addie is about to strike Mermaid Emma with a paint stirrer.  Audience Member Brody has no regard for the stage, and Chloe wonders what kind of family she's been borne into.

In the meantime, here are a few tidbits from the weekend:
  • Friday was my little sister's birthday!  She turned 29.  What, Abby?!  If I painstakingly drew all 29 candles on your birthday card cake, I feel like I'm entitled to tell the internets how old you are.  

One of my favorite pictures of Abby - she's always laughing!
We had a fun dinner at California Pizza Kitchen, followed by ice cream at DQ.  And when I say a "fun dinner" I really mean chaotic and borderline NOT fun.  There are 14 people in our "party" and when almost half of them are 7 and under, it's not like we're lounging around, recollecting the last 29 years of life with Abby.  Our out-to-dinner celebrations may be a thing of the past...
  • Saturday I got to get away for a bit and run some errands ALONE.  I'm not sure if there's anything I enjoy more these days.  I went to a thrift shop (the Salvation Army store) to look for... well... I have no idea why I went there.  It was calling to me as I drove by.  And by "drove by" I mean I didn't drive by it at all, I had to intentionally go there as it's on a side street.  But whatever.  
There was a man there trying on women's dresses and I could not figure out if he was trying to be funny or if he was serious.  I think serious.  He bought about five of them.  One of them was kind of cute.  I was kind of jealous but wasn't about to fight him for it. I did find a few fun things which I should probably blog about later.

Also, I bought some men's ties for tie-dying Easter eggs this week (and by the way, this will serve as your reminder for those of you who don't want to miss out on doing it this year!).  I asked the lady at the counter how much they were, and she replied $1.99.  Later when I went to check out, I asked the man how much they were and he told me 25¢.  SOLD!  Lesson learned: get price checks from the man and work it.
  • Our Hill of Calvary is sprouting!  It looks like a little hedgehog, but I know we'll have lush grass in no time.  I thought I'd killed the thing by leaving it out over night in freezing temps, but apparently this Hill of Calvary was not going down without a fight.  
We've literally been sitting at the table for a lot of the day watching the grass grow.

  • This afternoon the girls and I wrapped up their Artist Trading Cards for the swap we're doing.  They loved it... pretty much.  I think maybe, just maybe, it would be good to spread apart the ATC love next time because they were pretty much done by card number 3 or so.  
Addie's creations: (L-R) Rainbow Flower, Summer All The Time, Just Me, Rainbows Are Fun, Butterfly Buddy 

Emma's masterpieces (L-R):  Happy Sky, Dinosaurs Say RRR, Clowny-Cat, Summer Flower, My Creation 
But, they're done and we'll mail them off tomorrow.  Emma has a girl from Malaysia in her group and Addie has one from Australia, so we're excited to get international mail in the next week or two!
  • I finished a little craft project that's been sitting in my craft room for a month now waiting for me to wrap up!  Isn't it purdy?   

The colors look super crazy in this picture.  I promise I did not put morbid, black roses on my spring wreath.  I also promise I didn't use neon green yarn.  You'll just have to come over and see it in person. 

In fact, if you leave now, you might make it in time for intermission.  We're on Minute 42 of this play...

P.S.  What is UP with these bullet points?  I wish they'd just align and behave themselves.  If it annoys you like it does me, then I am SO sorry.  If you didn't even notice, then we are very different.

P.S.S.  What was the highlight of your weekend?


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