This was last night. Olivia was crying all evening (as usual) so I decided to give her a bath. It usually calms her down. She was so happy being in the big tub with Nina, she just kept smiling and cooing.
Spring must be on its way...yesterday morning there were at least three dozen birds swooping up and down from our roof, perching on our little tree branches, and hopping all over our lawn. They were also playing at our neighbors house across the street, but mostly at ours. I can't figure out why they liked our house so much, but Nina and I were entertained just watching them out of her bedroom window for about 15 minutes. Lots of red robins and little black birds. It's always so nice to hear the birds singing after they've been gone all winter!
I did laundry at Ruth's yesterday since my washer in on the blink. She's so nice to let me come over and do that. I can't believe how quickly the laundry piles up around here with four kids!
I was so happy yesterday when I opened the mailbox and found my Country Home magazine. I love all the pretty photographs and fun decorating ideas and recipes...it's one of my favorite magazines, one that I save to look at so I can enjoy it when the kids are in bed and it's quiet and I can have a little snack all to myself while reading it. WELL....sad sad news. Inside the magazine this time was a note saying, "This is your farewell issue." They aren't going to be publishing it anymore! I really felt so sad about it, even though it's just a magazine. I've subscribed to it for about the last 7 years and looked forward to each issue. Recession is lame is all I can say.
Remember how our dryer broke a few weeks ago? Well now it's the washer, gosh dang it. This afternoon I threw in a load and it NEVER STOPPED FILLING WITH WATER...we didn't realize it until Clay came out of the office in the basement and it was practically raining right through our newly sheetrocked ceilings down there in the hallway/bathroom. When it rains it pours I guess (no pun intended).
P.S. SINCE WHEN DO BUILDERS NOT PUT DRAINS WHERE YOU HOOK UP THE WASHING MACHINE? Cheapskates.
I used to hate having clutter all over the fridge. But I've found that a fridge covered in my kids' artwork makes me happy. It's always changing, but here's how it looks today. Don't you love Hannah's "Angles Love Peace"? Ha ha! Angles? And Ben's silhouette from school looks just like him, I love it. Nina's pink hearts, oh man! First hearts she's ever drawn. Ben's cityscape with "The Apple Store" kills me, and so does Hannah's Pippi and the "Dairy" horse!
When Ben was just a baby, my friend Julie and I loved this quote so much that we copied it out of my big Roald Dahl Treasury, and then we painted frames for the copies. I was thinking about this last night and wanted to share.
Okay, I just want to say I wish I could cook up a meal with Jamie Oliver. How fun would that be? He is so entertaining...I got a couple "Oliver's Twist" DVDs from the library and have been watching a couple shows each night this past week. I remember watching most of them when they were on Food Network about 6 or 7 years ago, and it's so fun to watch them again. Makes me excited to cook up some new recipes....like steak that's skewered with rosemary and crispy potatoes on the side, herby bread salad (with bread that's grilled right over the flame on the stove!), chicken with bacon, asparagus, olives and tomatoes....
I stayed up way too late last night watching him cook while I ate a chocolate sandwich. Didn't hit the pillow until after 1 in the morning. Then, yeah, I got up way too late and the kids missed the bus! Ha ha! All for Jamie Oliver.
I love three day weekends. I think EVERY weekend should be a three day weekend. I slept in until 9:30 :) . We made Swedish pancakes this morning and it was snowing again, just a little bit. I love Swedish pancakes when it's snowing.
In sad news, Hannah had a fever last night and was coughing all night. She slept until 11:30 this morning, then coughed so hard she threw up all over her bed. So now I'm washing sheets and cleaning carpet, AND the Cleaning Fairy does not exist. At least she didn't come to my house last night like I had wished.
We found this fun idea for classroom valentines in Family Fun magazine...iPods made from Sweetheart boxes! AWESOME! The kids were so excited to make them and take them to school. Ben even came up to me while we were making them and hugged me so tight, "I love you Mom!" he said. That made it worth it...We didn't start working on these until 8:30 the night before, and Ben and Hannah helped wrap and glue the papers on, but I was up until 12:30 finishing the little ear bud/string thingies! Dang it! It was one of those things where I thought, "Well, I just have to finish it since we started it." The next day I was helping with the party in Hannah's class, and my friend Shandra was there too. "What's this about iPods?" she asked. Apparently, the Hannah had been hyping it up at school all week, telling all her friends, "I'm giving you an iPod for Valentine's!" Ha ha!
On Friday afternoon, Clayton walked through the front door with a big vase of red roses :)
Yesterday morning was cozy with heart waffles, strawberries and cream, bacon and orange juice, and big fluffy snowflakes twirling down outside. Breakfast was getting cold and Clayton still hadn't come up from working downstairs, so I went down there and said, "Are you in this family?" (a quote from Matilda, a family favorite).
After breakfast, Clayton took Hannah to get her ears pierced with Mary and Spencer, but she was too scared and got some magnetic earrings instead. So did Nina. Then the girls all played at Spence and Em's house while Clay and Spencer took Ben to the shooting range (what a sweet little Valentine's activity, huh?).
Last night our good friends Chris and Natalie offered to watch the kids so we could go out on a date. They are so nice to us! We grabbed some yummy dinner at Pei Wei since everywhere else had a 2 hour wait. Olivia was fussy, but the food was good! We window shopped at the Gateway...mainly at Anthropologie, my favorite! And I love how it smells in there. Then to a movie (Coraline---very weird...don't waste your time or take your kids). After that, I thought we were heading home, but we ended up at the Marriott downtown. "We're staying here tonight!" Clayton said. I didn't believe him! But he wasn't kidding. We stayed up until 1:30 watching "Sleepless in Seattle" on TV. Olivia slept on the other bed in the room. She looked so tiny with that big bed all to herself!
Yeah, so Chris and Natalie had the kids overnight and even got them dressed and ready for church this morning! They are the best, and they are due for a weekend away so they better let us babysit soon! It was so nice just to be able to spend some time together, Clayton's been so busy lately we barely have time to talk during the week.
Yesterday Nina helped me make the batter for the Valentine heart waffles. I was cracking the eggs, and she had a very intelligent look on her face, eyebrows furrowed, ready to say something important. "Eggs are good for us, huh, Mom. They are good for our tummies," (she is rubbing her tummy here and nodding her head now). "Because eggs are fruit," she said.
I'm always telling her that fruit is good for us...apparently something's getting through, but not very clearly!
I told her, "Yeah, eggs are good for our tummies, but they are kind of more like meat instead of fruit."
So then she came to the wise conclusion, "Yeah. They are meat fruit."
All three of my girls have worn this pretty little dress for their baby blessing. Mom asked, "So who gets to keep it?" Well, that's easy, "I do!" Olivia was blessed on January 4th by Clayton, (on Clayton's 33rd birthday!). It was so cozy to have our family together, all squished in our little house afterwards for honey baked ham, muffins, fruit, and rosemary hashbrowns. Mmm...I love brunch! Especially on a cold winter's day. But of course the star of the show, Olivia, slept through it all and didn't mind.
Valentine cookies are a tradition at my house, and one of the only times during the year when we actually make sugar cookies. As my friend Janae said, "They are a labor of love!" I should make them more often though since they are so fun to decorate and eat! We baked these last Sunday, and then our good friends Jeff and Janae came over in the evening with their three kids and helped frost them and load on the candy hearts. It was so good to see those guys, we hadn't seen them in 3 years, which is so crazy since we only live 10 minutes apart. Unfortunately, the cookies were gone before I had a chance to get any pictures of the final masterpieces! And believe me, they were masterpieces! :)
I'm kind of slow posting this, but finally have a few minutes while Olivia is napping here after church. I can't believe my little Nina is four! She looks so big to me lately and her pretty hair is getting so long. Maybe she looks bigger because I'm comparing her to Olivia? Anyway, she's growing up too fast. Here are some pics from her birthday, and from her "Charlie and Lola" party we had with her friends. My cute friend Natalie came to help me with the party, but then Hannah took charge of all the games! "Don't worry, Mom, I can do all the games for you," she said. And she did! She blindfolded them and spun them around for pin-the-tail on Sizzles, and did the music for hot potato. So Nat and I just got to chat!