Archive for June, 2012

Now on stage…

Posted in Leah, Molly, Sports on June 18th, 2012 by jen – Be the first to comment

As Chad mentioned, the girls had their first ballet recital this weekend. Here's Leah and her class of little ducks looking incredibly cute at rehearsal.

Little ducks

Leah's definitely got the moves.

Nice dancing, Leah

Here's Molly's class rehearsing their dance to "If You Believe" from "The Whiz."

Molly's class

On recital night, the stage looked the same, but the audience was a lot bigger. Leah's on the lookout to find all of her fans in the sea of faces. In fact, she wandered off toward the front of the stage at one point during the performance looking through the audience to find her family. You never know what will happen when you put a 2 year old on stage, but Leah did great.

Recital night

Molly, with her dance partner. It's important to curtsy and bow before beginning the dance.

Molly and her dance partner

So graceful.

Nice move

Molly loved every minute of dancing.

Around and around

Did I mention that the girls had some fans?

Lots of flowers

First ballet recital

Posted in Leah, Molly, Video on June 17th, 2012 by c-had – Be the first to comment

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Molly and Leah both had their first ballet recital this weekend. I wasn't allowed to take video of the actual performance, but I did get to record the dress rehearsal, which was very similar except for the size of the audience.

The girls both did great. Leah loved the stage and the audience. She even wandered off a bit toward the front of the stage looking for all of her fans in the actual performance. Molly was the star of her show, as she knew what was supposed to be done and made sure others around her knew as well, both in the real performance and the rehearsal you see here.

While we were away…

Posted in Family visits, Leah, Molly on June 17th, 2012 by jen – 1 Comment

What were the girls up to, you ask? My parents graciously offered to come stay with them while we were in the Bahamas. They had as much fun as we did!

They went to several different playgrounds…

Rockin' playtime

Happy just playing

Checked out the new Mr. Potato Head exhibit at Port Discovery

Going on a Spud Quest

A big spud

Then spent an hour in the Wonders of Water exhibit.

If everybody had an ocean...

Window washers

Playing at the pool was another "must do" activity. They went twice over the weekend.

Relaxing by the pool

Don't let the water get you

Bathing suit beauties

G'Mom worked her pool magic and Leah was finally willing to swim a bit all by herself!

All by herself

And they popped in for a quick visit with Grams and Pop.

Grams, Pop, and the girls

The girls did great without us for 5 days, with no tears or sadness about being apart for longer than ever before. That said, they were very excited to see us when we walked in the door. And we were just as excited to see them.

Mommy and Daddy are home!

You can see more pictures from their days of fun here on Flickr. Thanks again G'Mom and Grampa for watching the girls. They loved every minute of it!

Our Bahamian Adventure, Part II

Posted in Trip on June 16th, 2012 by jen – 3 Comments

Our days got progressively more relaxing. On Sunday, we went on an all day island sailing cruise with Barefoot Sailing. The day began with a great sail for around 2 hours.

Barefoot sailing

We got the best seats in the house - on the back of the boat. Much less spray and great views. There were only 8 customers on the boat, plus the captain and first mate, making for a great experience.

Relaxing sail

We arrived at Rose Island and went snorkeling before lunch (which was a delicious barbecue of chicken and ribs cooked on the back of the boat). Chad had a "bathing suit" for his camera (as described by a boat-mate), which allowed for some good snorkeling pictures.

Snorkeling at Rose Island

Chad snorkeling

We snorkeled along a lovely coral reef.

Coral reef

We saw a very large (perhaps a foot and a half across) bright yellow sea star (aka starfish).

Big sea star

I have no idea what they're called, but there were lots of these flat leaves in many different colors.

Flat things

After snorkeling and eating our delicious lunch on the boat, we headed over to the island and climbed these steps cut out of the rock to get to the beach on the other side.


After climbing the steps, we followed a short path that led to this great beach.

Path to paradise

Here's the beach at the end of the path. Incredibly clear, beautiful water and no one aside from our boat-mates in sight.

Secluded beach

While I found some shade after absorbing some sun, Chad ventured out into the ocean to take a picture looking back at the beach.

Looking back at the beach

Nassau has lots of places selling you trinkets and junk, but we heard about this place, Bahama Hand Prints, from a fellow scuba diver. They design and create screen printed fabrics that are fantastic. We got to talk to and watch them making this fabric (which will be used in a new line of bags they're working on).

Bahama Handprints

They have a boutique where they sell clothing and home decor, but they also sell fabric. There's a bit of it in the boutique, but a lot more back in the work room. Chad allowed me to indulge in some fabric to make the girls dresses. It's a lot pricier than the discount stuff I get at home, but it is worth it after seeing the authentic Bahamian craftsmanship that went into making it.

Fabric rack

We had a fantastic time being just "Chad and Jen." There are more pictures from our trip here on Flickr.

Our Bahamian Adventure, Part I

Posted in Trip on June 15th, 2012 by jen – 1 Comment

Chad and I spent 5 days in the Bahamas celebrating our 10th anniversary (a little early). We stayed in downtown Nassau at the British Colonial Hilton. The hotel is in a great location, just minutes (via walking, taxi or ferry) from lots of things. Chad took this picture out the back of the hotel after dinner our first evening.

The hotel backyard

The hotel's private beach faced the harbor where the cruise ships docked. Here was the first arrival we saw. These ships really are amazingly huge.

Incoming cruise ship

Our first excursion was scuba diving. We've never done it before, but thought we'd try it out. We did a resort course, which was a beginner dive that you don't have to get certified for just to give you a little taste. Here I am on the boat and ready to go.

Scuba diving

We dove down to the bottom (~35 feet) of the Hollywood Bowl. It got it's name because of all the movies that have been shot there, such as Splash and Cocoon. Oh, and please excuse these pictures, as they were shot with a disposable underwater film camera.

I posed for a picture by the official Stuart Cove photographer. I was holding some sort of undersea creature, though we have no idea what it was.

Underwater model

While we went into it thinking of seeing lots of cool underwater stuff, we actually focused on scuba diving the whole time. As complete novices, we had to concentrate on making sure we didn't float up or sink down or forget to breathe the whole time. Combine that with being nervous about the whole thing, and it was a pretty intense experience.

Making our way around

This was a one tank dive, so we only had 30 minutes under the water. Time flew, and when we arrived back at the boat we were both shocked it was already over. Here's Chad ready to ascend back to the surface.

Under the sea

On Saturday, we hopped on a boat (and then another boat) and went to Blue Lagoon Island to have a Dolphin Encounter. We then hopped in the water to play with the dolphin (yes, that's incredibly clear ocean water, not a pool).

Dolphin petting

He then popped out of the water to give hugs.

Happy hug

Affectionate dolphin

I think I found a ticklish spot on the dolphin's belly, so I got splashed a bit.

Stop, that tickles!

After playing with the dolphins, we hung out on the island for most of the rest of the day. We found a secluded beach ocean-side to hang out. Yes, that's ocean water, despite looking as clear as a swimming pool.

Clear water

We didn't stay in the water for too long, as we were looking to just relax on our little beach.

Relaxing on the beach

Our little beach was great, but it lacked any shade. So, after a while we headed back to the lagoon side of the island. Here's a look at the lagoon opening into the ocean.

Lagoon side

This side had thatched cover and palm trees to escape the Bahamian sun.

In the shade

A look at the lagoon as we leave it on the last boat of the day.

The lagoon

More to come…

The Amanda Dress

Posted in Sewing on June 10th, 2012 by jen – Be the first to comment

When I saw that Lily Bird Studio was looking for pattern testers, I jumped at the chance to sew this cute dress! The Amanda dress has a full circle skirt, pleated sleeves and a cute sash to add that little extra flare.

The Amanda dress

The dress is available for sizes 12 months to 10 years. I tested the size 5 for Molly and it fits her perfectly. I had not worked with bias trim this much before and was super pleased with how it turned out.

Amanda dress back

Molly decided it was the perfect dress for her preschool graduation and I couldn't have agreed more!

Lily Bird Studio has patterns for both girls and boys. If you'd like to make this Amanda dress, or another one of her patterns, save 15% off by using SELLERS15OFF at checkout through 6/12/12.

Glen Mar had a Field Day!

Posted in Family outings, Leah, Molly on June 4th, 2012 by jen – 1 Comment

Our church had a Field Day on Sunday afternoon. So, naturally the first thing to do is excavate fossils, right?.

Fossil dig

The sugar rush began with cotton candy. Yum!

Cotton candy, yum!

Then they moved on to snow cones. Aunt Caroline came to hang out for a bit. She was great at holding Leah's hair out of her face to make snow cone eating easier.

Snowcones too

Leah didn't want to be left out of the jumping rope fun.

She can jump rope

Chasing friends with bubbles is fun too!

Bubbles with friends

These may be for spinning, but Leah found them to be relaxing seats.


Or you can have your friends spin you around.

Spin me, Simon

Leah enjoyed the slides and tunnels on the playground too.

Slides are fun

Tunnel vision

Thanks Glen Mar for a fun field day! Let's make this an annual event, ok?!

Sneak peek

Posted in Leah, Molly on June 2nd, 2012 by jen – Be the first to comment

The girls' ballet recital is coming up soon, but here's a sneak peek at our little duck from picture day.

Ballerina sneak peek

And our pretty ballerina.

A pretty ballerina

More to come soon…

We have a graduate!

Posted in Celebrations, Leah, Molly on June 1st, 2012 by jen – 2 Comments

Molly's last day at East Columbia Preschool was on Wednesday. Sniff, sniff. I can't believe she's heading off to Kindergarten in the Fall!


Sisterly love before heading off to school.

Sisterly love

Molly had a fantastic year with Miss Kelly.

Our preschool graduate

She's a preschool graduate!


We were all there to celebrate with her. If you want to feel like you were there too, watch the video of graduation here.

The fam

Molly and Jake have known each other since they were less than a year old, and here they stand together as preschool graduates.

Long-time friends

Molly and her teachers for the year - Miss Jodi, Miss Kelly, and Miss Kathy.

Graduate and her teachers

A graduation isn't complete with a little advice from a great teacher.

Sage advice

So long for now ECP, but we'll be back in 2013!

Molly’s preschool graduation

Posted in Celebrations, Molly, Video on June 1st, 2012 by c-had – 1 Comment

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Molly graduated from preschool on Wednesday. They had a nice ceremony including a review of some of the stuff the kids learned this year. This video includes some of the highlights.

Note that this video is about 6 minutes long and may take a while to load on a slower Internet connection. Also, please excuse my shoddy video work, as it was difficult to get shots amongst all the parents/grandparents/siblings competing to see.