Snow days

Posted in Leah, Molly on January 29th, 2015 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Despite a storm that was not as bad as the forecast, we have had two snow days already this week (Monday and Tuesday). Tuesday, the girls headed outside to have some fun. Here they are making snow angels in the little bit of snow we got.

Snow angels

Mommy even got involved in the fun. Here she and Leah are zooming ahead of Molly on the sled.

Mommy too

Now it’s Molly’s turn to ride with Mommy.

Switch

Leah’s really skidding to the side here.

Skidding

Made it to the bottom. Lots of fun.

Fun at the bottom

Who needs a sled? Leah’s happy to slide down the hill in our back yard without one.

No sled

She made it to the bottom. She wins!

She wins

Day of service

Posted in Church, Leah, Molly on January 28th, 2015 by c-had – Be the first to comment

This year, our church participated in the day of service on MLK day. They had a bunch of service opportunities, both at the church and around the community. We opted to stay at the church, as they had a bunch of kid-friendly activities to participate in there.

Molly and Jen helped package meals for Kids Against Hunger. Molly’s job was to measure and pour the mixed vegetables. Our church packaged a total of 15,606 meals for those in need in the DC Metro area.

Packaging meals

Leah wasn’t keen on the hair net, so she and I made cards to cheer up those away from home.

Making cards

Once they were done packaging meals, Molly and Jen joined us in the card making room.

More cards

If you give our girls a choice of service opportunities, they’ll generally choose the creative ones if they exist. So, after making cards, we moved on to making bookmarks for Operation Christmas Child.

Bookmark making

While Jen and the girls may excel at drawing, coloring, cutting, and the like, I do not share that talent. I mostly let them make these sorts of things, but I did contribute a single bookmark. Rather than putting a simple ribbon bow on it like the others, I gave it some curly hair.

My bookmark

It was a great day of service. Thanks to all who helped organize and put it on.

A trio of dresses

Posted in Crafts, Leah on January 25th, 2015 by jen – 1 Comment

Hoodies are all the rage in our house right now. After I made Chad's new hoodie, Leah requested one too. Though for this "dresses and skirts only" girl, it couldn't be just a regular hoodie. So, I made her a Hangout Hoodie dress. Leah picked the fabric and was so excited to wear her new dress to school on Friday.

LeahHangoutHoodie

She was also kind enough to model a few Blue Ribbon dresses recently. The first dress was a birthday gift for Leah's friend, Matilda.

Modeling a new dress

It's a perfect dress for spinning!

Great for spinning

She had to show off the back.

Such a cutie

You can't have a photo shoot without at least one silly shot.

Silly

And maybe a scary one too!

Scary

A week later, I made the same style dress for Emmie's birthday. Leah was again willing to model.

Modeling dress #2

Making sure you see the back

She does love to spin

Photo bomb

Happy 6th birthday to you, Emmie and Matilda!

A bit of snow

Posted in Molly on January 20th, 2015 by c-had – Be the first to comment

On January 6 (yes, I know it took me a while to post this), we finally got enough snow to break out the sled, though just barely at about 3 inches. Leah was not interested in playing in the cold, but Molly and I had a bunch of fun. First, sledding of course.

Snow

Molly is crazy when it comes to snow. She likes to just lie in it and play. She laid like this for 5 or 10 minutes just piling up snow under her and eating a bit of it.

Crazy about snow

If you love to roll around in the snow, snow angels are lots of fun.

Snow

The snow managed to stay on the ground for more than a week thanks to temperatures in the teens, but no real accumulation has happened since then. Hopefully we’ll get at least one good snow to play in soon.

Dabbling into menswear

Posted in Crafts on January 19th, 2015 by jen – 1 Comment

I decided it was time to dabble into menswear and make Chad something. He recently bought a new hoodie to wear alongside Molly when she's wearing her favorite hooded t-shirts. So, I knew that the Greenstyle Hudson Hooded T-shirt was the perfect project.

Measurements were taken once, twice, and maybe even three times! The fit turned out great and he likes that it’s super soft.

New hoodie

The hood is a tad huge if he pulls it fully forward. But, it's perfect if you are going for the Arrow-style supehero look!

A bit overboard

Ok, that's better.

Ok, that's better

I see more of these hooded t-shirts in his future. :)

The return of Mommy

Posted in Leah, Molly on January 18th, 2015 by c-had – Be the first to comment

I won’t spend time on how crazy it was for Jen to get home from her trip, since she’s already talked about that. However, after she did get back (and got a little sleep), Leah had something to show her.

While Jen was away, Leah built her new Lego Dolphin Cruiser. Leah wanted to surprise Jen with it, so we covered it with a blanket until she could reveal it. After a busy day, she finally found time to do just that.

Weekend project

Leah had to show Jen all the details. Note that the upper deck is even removable to allow access to the main level.

Looking inside

Here’s Leah with her complete ship (and jet ski towing a skier). It took her 3 days to build the 612 piece craft.

Leah and her ship

Note that maintenance is sometimes required.

Ship maintenance

And Leah wasn’t the only one with a surprise. Jen surprised the girls with a king cake from Nonna Randazzo’s. They knew she had an edible surprise, and kept guessing what it might be throughout the weekend. Once they finally found out what it was, they were not disappointed.

Edible surprise

Bowling for three

Posted in Family outings, Leah, Molly on January 17th, 2015 by c-had – Be the first to comment

While Jen was out of town, the girls and I headed to the local bowling alley for some cosmic bowling fun. Molly’s pretty good now. With a bit more practice, she won’t even need the bumpers.

Cosmic bowling

Leah started out bowling granny style, but had trouble getting much speed on the ball. Twice we had to get someone to retrieve her ball that had stopped midway down. Shortly thereafter, I had two independent strangers come up and suggest she try a bowling ramp. So, an employee brought one out for her to try. She loved it. I thought it felt like cheating, but if she loves it then I’m not going to take it away.

Bowling ramp

She got quite a few strikes once she had the help of the ramp.

Strike

The girls had lots of fun. We bowled 3 complete games each over the course of 2 hours, and they might have gone for even longer if I had let them.

A Louisiana adventure

Posted in Trip on January 14th, 2015 by jen – 1 Comment

I traveled down to Abita Springs, Louisiana. to visit my long-time friend, Jen, and her new hubby, Darren. I left early on Friday morning; we were all dressed and out the door by 6:45a!

When Jen asked if there was anything particular that I wanted to do (or eat) while I was in town, my answer was all about food! I miss that good La. food! Jen was a fabulous host and fixed gumbo on Friday night for dinner, yum!

Saturday, we ventured around Mandeville and eventually landed upon a local farmer's market. We then decided to stop into Fleurty Girl, a very cute "Everything New Orleans" boutique.

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My prized purchase was a signed copy of In a While, Crocodile, a cajun slow-cooker cookbook with recipes like Corn and Crab Bayou Bisque, Flambeaux Gumbo, and Laissez les Bons Temps Rouler Shrimp Étouffée. Jen and Darren bought a copy too, so we've agreed to cook through it and update each other on the results. I'm going to hold you to it, you two!

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After our shopping concluded, it was time for more great food. Crabby Shack is owned by the same family as Young's Steakhouse in Slidell, a restaurant my family frequented. Jen and Darren had not been to Crabby Shack, so my visit was a perfect excuse to try it. Darren and I got adventurous with our appetizer and ordered frog legs. "Tastes like chicken. Ribbit!"

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I asked Chad's mom if there was anything she needed while I was in La. In addition to bringing her creole seasoning, she asked about finding Mardi Gras fabric. And man, did we hit the jackpot! Sew This is a local quilt shop with a great selection of fabrics. They had a boat load of Mardi Gras, LSU, and New Orleans themed fabrics. Beth kept asking if the amount she wanted was going to be too much to bring back. I had to remind her that it was just me traveling; I had plenty of room in my suitcase. :)

FotorCreated LaFabrics

In one of late night chats, I asked Chad if he wanted me to bring home any King cake. He was only interested if it was from Ranzazzo's. Well, lucky for him, Nonna Randazzo's had two locations close to Jen's. So, we stopped in and picked up this beauty. We kept it a secret from the girls until I got home!

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Since the King cake was off limits until returning to Maryland, we headed off to Café du Monde on Saturday evening for dessert. You can't eat beignets without making a powdered sugary mess!

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Sunday started out nice and relaxing. We attended church at St. Timothy UMC, then ate an awesome brunch at The Chimes. We couldn't pass up the Boudin Balls, and I feasted on Eggs Benedict topped with crawfish, cheese grits, hash browns and sausage. So so good! We all brought half the meal home for dinner.

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I took advantage of a quiet house and took a 2-hour afternoon nap. A pretty rare occurrence for this Momma, and it was a good thing I did! The rest of Sunday was a roller coaster.

My 8:10p flight back to BWI was delayed to 8:50p, 10:50p, 11:35p, Cancelled, then reinstated to leave at 11:50p. I finally boarded a plane at 12:00a, landing at 3:15a. A kind couple I met while in line to reschedule our previously cancelled flight offered to give me a ride home. We made it to their car around 4:00a only to find the car battery was DEAD! The car was jumped by the parking lot attendant and I was finally headed home. I climbed in bed at 5:00a.

I had a fabulous visit and an adventure that I will never forget!!

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Happy early birthday Grampa

Posted in Celebrations, Family visits on January 13th, 2015 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Before our guests headed back to their home states, we had one more celebration. After ice skating and an early dinner, it was time to celebrate Grampa’s birthday (a couple days early).

Happy birthday Grampa

Grampa is in shock. These slippers are just too much.

Shocking slippers

Happy birthday, Grampa!

Ice skating

Posted in Family outings, Family visits on January 12th, 2015 by c-had – Be the first to comment

For our final day of visitors, we decided to go ice skating at our local rink. This was Emmie’s first time ice skating (and Leah’s first successful time).

Ready to skate

Here’s Leah skating with a walker for the first time. She did great, both holding hands and using the walker.

Leah skating

Molly and Emmie flew around the ice as fast as their walkers would let them.

Molly and Emmie

Leah was hilarious. She’d skate around with us, then say she wanted a break. But as soon as she stepped off the ice, she’d say she changed her mind and wanted to keep skating. So, back onto the ice she’d go.

Hand holding

Every time we go ice skating, we leave the rink wondering why we don’t do it more often. It’s so much fun, close by, and included in our gym/tennis/etc. membership so we only have to pay skate rental fees.