Saturday, August 30, 2008

Birthday Party Fun

So today was the day that Ciara got to go to her first real big kid birthday party. The party was held at this really cool place called Pump It Up. (If you have young kids you've probably heard of it since they appear to have locations all over the country)

She had a blast.

I had a lot of fun myself. For once I got to just be a Mom. At least half of the kids from my class were there, along with a bunch of other kids from the school...but for just this once
I had absolutely NO responsibility for any of them except for Ciara. And truth be told, I pretty much just let her run off and do her thing while I talked to the other parents. I like being just another one of the Moms. I'm definitely looking forward to when Ciara gets to elementary school and I no longer have to have a professional relationship with her friends or their parents.

Another cool thing about the day was watching Ciara and her friend Lexi play together. Lexi's Mom is a teacher at our center too. Beth and I were co-teachers together when we were both pregnant and the girls are exactly 6 weeks apart in age. They really have been friends in a way since before they were even born. They are no longer in the same class at school since Ciara had to move up so that I could teach Preschool, and Lexi is only there 2 days a week anyway, so they really don't get too many chances to play with each other. It really amused me that out of all of the other children at the party that they both know, they sought each other out and played together the entire time. At one point Lexi turned to me and said "Ciara is my
Best Friend"...if that doesn't just melt your heart than nothing will.

So this is Ciara having a blast at her very first big girl party...

Chow time...

Really cool idea for cake time (if your kid is a huge fan of construction stuff)

The kids having fun playing on the Birthday Boy's throne

Best Friends...

Thursday, August 28, 2008

This is how I roll

Hooray! Jessica @ Farm Fresh Iowa is back with her It's Real Life festival. This week's assignment is "How I roll".

So here it is, my main method of beloved (and unbelievably, disgustingly messy) minivan in all it's un-tampered with glory.

I took these pictures this morning as Ciara and I were leaving for work.

Here is Ciara with her load of completely unnecessary items that must be taken with us as she meanders around before actually entering the vehicle.

This is Ciara's absolute favorite part of our car...she simply has to check every single day to make sure that it hasn't gone away.
This my friends is the foolish spider who somehow managed to make it's way into my passenger-side headlight only to perish when it was unable to find a way back out. I suppose the bulb will eventually need to be changed, but we won't let Ciara in on that little nugget of info just yet.
This is Ciara's little throne. As you can see, I do not really make any sort of attempt at keeping my car clean. I realized long ago that it was just pointless to even bother trying. On the floor you will notice several identical booklets, all of which Ciara has swiped on our way out of the school. We have a shelf full of them and she refuses to pass it without picking one up. There is also a first aid kit (which is primarily used for the lovely soapy wipes contained within), a lei that we picked up at a concert that has been in the car since July, Ciara's "slippers", and our portable potty. It's usually kept tidily away in it's little bag, but a week or so ago I had a meeting and Kevin was supposed to come pick Ciara up from school. Instead he called and asked me to meet him halfway between work and our I quickly packed Ciara into the car and took off as I was in a rush. Of course Ciara suddenly announced that she had to pee. Even though we were waiting for Kevin in the parking lot of a gas station which most likely had facilities useful in such cases...I thought the little potty seemed like a better idea. However, Kevin pulled in before I had a chance to finish getting it prepped and so I handed her over to him and took off. The potty has been sitting as you see it ever since.
This is my domain...all packed up and ready to go to work. Ciara's swimming stuff is under my bag. It has been sitting there since last Thursday when she had water day at school. Fortunately today was water day again and I can happily say that her things are no longer in my car. The paper on the floor is "art" that she did a few weeks ago. The children in her class were cutting out "things that you eat" from magazines and this was her contribution. It will end up in the garbage eventually, I just haven't gotten around to it yet.
Here is Ciara performing her rituals as we prepare to depart. I covered her with her blanket, and now she is covering Lamby with her little blankie.
The back of the van. The suitcase has been there for about a month. Kevin took it to get repaired and just left it there. The tricycle has been there for about 3 weeks or so. Ciara had bike day at school and I never bothered to bring it back into the house.

And that's just about it. Nothing too exciting really...just lots of evidence of my slothfulness.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Kinda funny?

Am I the only one who is amused by the fact that the US Navy sponsors the tv show Ghost Hunters?

Since when does the Navy sponsor tv shows, and why Ghost Hunters out of the thousands of choices?

They must be getting desperate for new recruits.

The number 8 Connection

The way my brain works is completely bizarre. I hope that I don't scare you all off with my craziness, but since I found this fascinating I thought that I would share.

I really couldn't begin to tell you why I started thinking about this, but last night as I was thinking about my beautiful new niece I noticed a little something...

Jovey Caroline *******- (sorry, don't want any crazy stalkers hunting her down) in numerology her name breaks down to 16457(23- 2+3=5) 3196395(36-3+6=9) 5133135(21-2+1=3)…5+9+3=17…1+7=8

There are 8 letters in the name Caroline.

Born 08/26/2008 (2+6= 8) (However if you add her birth date up the number is actually 9) @ 08:18 am (8+1+8= 17…1+7=8)

She weighed 7lbs 10oz (7+1+0= 8)

Part of the reason that I noticed this was because my sister had a similar thing going on when she was born. Mary was born @ either 7:52am (8 minutes before 8) or 8:08am (I can't remember which for sure at the moment) on 8/18. I feel like there were more 8 connections, but I really can't remember at the moment. I just remember we always used to talk about Mary and all of the 8's.

This is what I was able to discover about the number 8 in numerology via google this morning...

8 represents balance; it's the number that brings reward to some and takes away from others. In shape and energy, 8 symbolizes the idea that all actions have consequences, and it strikes a balance not only in your financial health, but in matters of love and success throughout your life.

Just thought it was interesting (especially considering Mary and the number 8). Also- I found out after sending out an email to my family about this that 8 happens to be my Mom's favorite number.

Coincidence or something more?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

It's a celebration!

I have to thank my sister for providing me with the perfect material to celebrate my 100th post.

Please join me as I welcome my brand new niece...

Jovey Caroline
7 lbs 10 oz
Born 8/26/08 @ 8:18 am (EST)

Mary and her girls

Welcome to the family beautiful girl! I wish that I could be there to give you a million hugs and cuddles. Don't you worry though, I'll still be the best Aunt ever and spoil you like the Princess you are.

Congratulations Mary, Blaine, and Niesa! I love you guys and I can't wait to meet the newest member of the family. Please give her lots of hugs and kisses for me until then.

Monday, August 25, 2008

I get by with a little help from my friends...

This one is for all of you ladies with young boys...

Ciara is invited to her first big girl birthday party this weekend. The party is for a little boy who is turning 4.

My question is two-fold:
What do boys this age want for their birthday?
What gifts have your sons received that
you love and which ones do you absolutely hate?

Oh, and I'm trying to keep it under $20.

Thanks my peeps!

PS- the next post is #100. Any requests or suggestions for marking the occasion?

Update: Thank you all for your very helpful advice.
In case anyone is interested, in the end I settled on a Seek & Find Zoo puzzle by Bloom (the makers of Cranium). It was on clearance for a whopping $6.98. I am pleased that I found something that met all of my requirements for a gift...It is something a 4 year old boy will enjoy, it will not irritate the crap out of his parents, it has at least a bit of educational value (since I
am one of his teachers), it should not inspire violence or rough-housing, and it was not expensive! Yay! As an added bonus the gift bag features a cute little pirate and includes an actual eye patch! What 4 year old boy wouldn't love that?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

I'm it

I was recently tagged for two different Memes so I thought that I would condense them into one post for the sake of simplicity (or just because I am too lazy to do two different posts).

First BookMomma @ Hotwheel Hacienda tagged me for this one...

1. What is your favorite quotable line from a movie?
I'm not really one to go around quoting movies a whole lot, so this one was tough for me. The only thing that comes to mind is the crass but classic

"I fart in your general direction!"

2. Who is the most famous person you've talked to?
Well, it's not like I had a full on conversation. I pretty much just blurted out inanities due to the fact that all of the blood had rushed out of my brain in his presence...but I did actually speak to Joe McIntyre once. (That would be just before I got back into my car with a near stranger and chased his limo out of the parking lot causing his entourage to get out of the car to tell me to back the hell off...such a proud moment!)

3. How many bags/boxes of potato chips are consumed at your house per month?
Oh god, I have absolutely no idea! Potato chips are my heroine. I just can't seem to break the habit.

4. What foreign food dish do you prepare from scratch and serve?
Does lasagne count?

5. What is your favorite section of the supermarket?
Huh...I'm not really sure that I have one. Do people really have favorite sections of the supermarket? I guess it just depends on what I'm in the mood to eat when I'm there. I can tell you that my least favorite section is the seafood department though.

6. What was your high school team's mascot and what were the school colors?
The Blue and the White colors ever dear to me

Banner of Morse High the flag of victory, rah, rah, rah

The Blue and the White when we hear our battle cry

We'll fight for the glory of the blue and white of old Morse High!

Go Shipbuilders!

(Possibly one of the worst mascots in history, but what can you do?)

I'm not going to tag anyone for this. If you feel like doing it I would love to see your answers!

My friend Tricia tagged me for this one...
here are the rules,
1. Link back to the person who tagged you

2. Mention the rules on your blog

3. Tell about 6 unspectacular quirks of yours

4. Tag 6 following bloggers by linking to them

5. Leave a comment for those you tagged letting them know that you tagged them.

So let's see, 6 unspectacular quirks?
1. I can say the alphabet backwards as fast as I can say it forwards

2. According to my sister I always look at my food before putting it in my mouth.

3. I can raise one side of my upper lip in an Elvis like way, but not the other.

4. I am ambidextrous. I eat and write with my left hand but I do many other things right handed. I can write with my right hand as well, but it takes me a lot longer. Having a child has forced me to eat right handed more times than I can count.

5. I have to load my dishwasher in a particular way and I get very annoyed when other people do it wrong. My husband has given up trying.

6. If a song I like comes on I can't help but sing along, but good luck hearing me because I'm unbelievably quiet except when I'm alone in my car. I'm told I have a nice voice, but I'm terrified of singing solo in public. I was in chorus all through school though.

I'm totally breaking the rules because it's my blog and I can. I'm not going to tag anyone for this one either. Feel free to go ahead and tag yourself!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Garlic Chicken Cavatappi Alfredo

Here is the promised recipe for Garlic Chicken Fettuccine Pasta Alfredo

1-2 Cloves Garlic (or to taste)
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts cut to taste
2-3 T Olive Oil
3/4 lb uncooked dry pasta
6 T unsalted butter
2/3 c heavy or whipping cream
1/2 tsp salt
generous dash ground white pepper
generous dash ground nutmeg
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 3 oz)

cover bottom of large skillet with olive oil
crush or mince garlic and saute in oil
add chicken to garlic
cook chicken until no longer pink

Cook dry pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water 6-8 minutes
just until al dente.
Remove from heat. Drain well; return to dry pot.

Place butter and cream in a large, heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Cook and stir until butter melts and mixture bubbles. Cook and stir 2 minutes more.
Stir in salt, pepper, and nutmeg. (
The nutmeg is the secret!) Remove from heat.
Gradually stir in cheese until thoroughly blended and smooth. Return briefly to heat to completely blend cheese if necessary.
(Do not let sauce bubble or cheese will become lumpy and tough.)

Add chicken to pasta in pot. Pour sauce over pasta and chicken. Stir and toss with 2 forks over low heat 2 to 3 minutes until sauce is thickened and the pasta and chicken are evenly coated.


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Friday, August 22, 2008


Thank you very much for all of the great feedback about my burgeoning photography skills.

I got the ultimate compliment today when my friend Jessica asked me if I would be her wedding photographer next year!

I said that if things work out ok for me to make the trip to Maine that I would love to do it for her. I'm a bit nervous because I've never done anything like that before. I would hate to screw something that important up. Looks like I'll be doing a lot of practicing over the next year! If anyone has any tips or suggestions I would love to hear them.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


I recently discovered that our old digital camera that had not been working properly for quite some time (but is way better than the one I've been using) is actually functioning again. It has lots of cool features that I never knew about before. Thanks to Rachel @ American Mum I actually understand some of it now, so I thought I'd go outside and experiment a bit. These are some of the results.

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What do you think? Should I keep experimenting?

Wordless Wednesday