Friday, July 10, 2009

Pics of! Can't believe I get to go here.....

This is a pic (sorry it's so big!) of the Athaneum Hotel (I probably didn't spell that right). This is where our fancy dinners will be....

Pretty right?

Here's a view of the harbor(Chautauqua is right on Lake Erie)...

Still can't believe I'm going on this trip. I'm going to miss my kids. I'm going to miss Emmett's snuggles and reading to Zoe and Sam's silliness and Weston's chattiness. Oy! This is one of the hardest things I've ever ever done.

Hopefully it will be worth it. Hopefully I'll learn loads. Hopefully I'll makes some fabulous connections with people I'll know for ages and ages. Hopefully I'll get some work done on my novel and decide where to go with my revisions. Hopefully I won't gain a 100 pounds from all the yummy food.

Okay. Check out the stairs I'll get to walk up in my swanky heels....

Brilliant, eh? I need to get a pic of me on those, right? Oy. I'm going to be a total and complete tourist, aren't I? Ah, well. I'll have fun!
Last shot. The view from the hotel......... (I won't be staying at this hotel. The week's lodging was a biiiiiit tooooooo steep for me. Especially since I didn't want a roommate. I'll be staying at The Summer House Victorian Bed and Breakfast. And I've heard it's beautiful. I'm sure I'll be sharing pics. Lots and lots of pics!)
So long all! Have a great week and I look forward to catching up with everyone when I get back!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Random Bits

*Last night was my first pack meeting of being the Cub Master. It went pretty good except for the fact that it rained and it was supposed to be at a park! My super sweet man stepped in and made the s'mores in the oven. Now that's a boy scout for ya, eh? Weston received his bear. Boy, he is such a stinkin' great kid. I'm having so much fun being more involved with scouts with him. And it was super cool that I got to be the one to award him his badge.

*I refinished a desk. It's now all antiqued and turquoisy. It turned out beeeee-UTE-ifully! And I love it.

*I'm trying to get the revisions done on my picture book so I can send it back to the editor and then bite all my nails down to the quick.

*I'm hoping to get my kids to do a lot of work around the house tomorrow by mean....ENCOURAGING them with a Surprised Family Date planned for tomorrow night. (shhhh! Don't tell! We're going to a magic show)

*I've now lost 19 pounds. :)

*I'm wishing I was getting work done on revising my MG novel. But I'm stuck at this spot. I need to figure out how to get them through a door. But should the snarky Sea Witch trick them or should it be their idea? Sticky. Sticky.

*I need to post pictures of Sam's birthday, Ryan's birthday, our trip up north for John and Alysha's sweet baby's blessing and maybe even of my fancy dresses and swanky heels I found for the dressy dinners in New York when I went shopping with my Awesome Sister, Candace. :) Boy, that girl has excellent taste.

*I need to sew new elastic on some skirts for this sweet older lady that walks by my house.

*My kids are already worried about me being gone to New York. My 7 year old really wishes I'd just take him with me. He's such a snuggly guy. It's going to be hard to be gone.

*I'm going to go try out one of those spray on tans tomorrow. Cross your fingers for me that I don't turn orange.

*Here's a random shot of sweet goofy Zoe...

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Happy Birthday Zoe!

What a fun day!

Zoe is 2!
We started the day out with scrambled eggs, Zoe's favorite breakfast (although it probably runs a close tie with rice krispies). Then she got to open two presents because I wasn't sure which one of the dresses I'd made for her she'd want to wear. She chose this one...

Oh, she's just the sweetest, smiliest girl!

Before we set out on a bike ride (Zoe LOVES bike rides! She rides in a little seat on the back of my bike and she just adores it) I tried to get some good shots in the backyard of our wee chickadee....

We were originally going to go for a longer bike ride to a park, but the clouds looked fairly ominous and Emmett said he saw lightening. So....we went for a pretty short bike ride to a park very close to our house. But Zoe still had fun on the swings and slide, so that's what matters!

We had macaroni and cheese for lunch (another of Zoe's favorites) and then Grandma Margaret stopped by to bring Zoe a sweet birthday card (thanks Grandma! She'll love picking something out at the store with the moola!)

Later we headed off to two baseball games, Emmett's and Sam's and wished we'd dressed warmer. It was chilly! Then we grabbed happy meals at Mcdonald's (subway for Ryan and I) and came home to nosh.
Of course, the best part came next....

Our Zoe loves loves LOVES shoes and strawberries. So, it should be no surprise that I made her a Strawberry Shoecake. heh heh. She even managed to blow the candles out herself (it only took about 10 tries...)

It was very fun watching her open her presents. She got so excited for each one and wanted to stop and play with them right then and there.

Grandma Donna picked out some FABulous pink strappy sandals for the wee girl. When Zoe opened the box she exclaimed, "Shoes!" :)

The boys picked out fun presents for her. Weston got her a little stuffed dog and dog house (she loves dogs), Sam picked out a little people van with a baby and mom(she loves babies) and Emmett got her Playdoh and playdoh toys(she loves playdoh).

If you can't tell, there are quite a few things that make Zoe happy. She is, in fact, a very sweet and sunshiney kind o' girl.

Because of her fondness for babies the scrub a dub baby doll was a big hit. She also enjoyed trying to put on the clothes I made for the baby later.

But, I think the biggest and bestest hit of the evening was the LARGE present that came for her today, just in the nick of time. She's been stealing Sam's whenever she's gotten the chance, so we figured it was time she had one of her own....

A scooter! But, not just any...oh no. It's a pink, flowery, girly scooter!

Boy, that girl took off.
Around the table, the island, back into the living room, back around the table and she even gave her new baby a ride. The only thing she stopped scooting for was to have her new pink strappy shoes put on (oh and to kind of pose for pics for mom...geez! doesn't the lady ever give up??). I think she would have slept in those shoes if I'd have let her!

Notice those bits of pink strappy fun on the girl's feet? Looks like she's showing them off a tad, eh?

Zoe had a super birthday and we sure enjoyed playing with her today. We're so grateful she's apart of our nutty bunch. I just can't even imagine our family without her. She brings so much joy and laughter. And she turns those big brothers of her's into piles of mush. They'll do just about anything for her.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Trying to get a cute shot of Zoe

This girl is so busy! It's hard to keep her still long enough to get a good picture of her.

Talking on the phone. What a girl, eh?

This sweet girl is completely and utterly delightful.
And, yes, she has all of us wrapped around her chubby little fingers.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Camping Chaos!

Last weekend we took a camping trip down to the Wahweap and stayed in the Tommy Cabin. I use the word "cabin" loosely. The kids were THRILLED to finally get there. While dad set up stuff, we explored a bit and I tried to snap some good pics before a swarm of gnats ate us. Camping is the best, right?

There is a huge rock to the side of the cabin. It's an amazing wonderland for our boys. They played on that for hours. It really is huge. Here is a just a small portion of it....

We brought two four-wheelers with us and Friday Ryan's dad came down with another one. We went on a fun ride and hiked up a canyon looking for some petroglyphs Franz had heard about.

Amazingly enough, we found them. You can't see them too good in this next picture. But Ryan is climbing up to get a better look at them. They look kinda fake, but Ryan said up close they looked real. We also found bits of pottery, an arrowhead, and old bits of charcoal from fires. Of course, we couldn't keep any of it, so we took a picture instead....

We continued on up the canyon for a ways. There were fun rocks to climb on, ponds to throw stuff in and treasures to find. Great fun for busy boys. And Zoe enjoyed being packed the whole by her sweet dad.

This rock was very cool. You can't really see it in this picture, but it reminded me of the bark of a ponderosa tree. And it makes a great chair, eh?
Friday evening I went for a walk with Sam and Zoe. We found a neat rock with a great view. Well, the whole place has great views. And, of course, I had to snap more pics.
Saturday we wanted to get out early since there was supposed to be a storm. After breakfast (pancakes with a wee bit of strawberry jam*I* forgot to pack the syrup)I took the kids on a four-wheeler to some sand dunes nearby so Ryan could finish getting everything in the truck. But while we were there rolling around in the sand and filling our pockets with the lovely stuff, the wind REALLY picked up and I herded them back onto the four-wheeler. When the raindrops began to fall I picked up the pace and luckily came upon Ryan coming to get us. And then we were out of there.
Ryan had to advise three worried tourists in vehicles about the slick muddy roads, but only had to help one of them out of a ditch(while it was hailing) What a great guy, right?
We sure love to go camping. We always have the best times (even if there were way too many gnats) We roasted hot dogs and marshmallows, enjoyed Ryan's dutch oven potatoes and cobbler, took walks, explored cool looking rocks, laughed at silly jokes and loved every minute of being together without chores, homework or stuff we had to do.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Green Chaos!

(Happy Chaos Tip #5: Throw a random party!)

Check out our St. Patrick's Day party for the kids and some of their friends (who knew everyone that was invited would come??)......

Look! It's a wee leprechaun! Hurry. Get her gold.

We had a contest to see who could wear the most green. Too bad I couldn't give the awards to these three. They really went all out! But we chose some of the visiting leprechauns instead.

You probably can't tell by this pic, but Zoe really enjoyed the sprite and green sherbet floats. :)

We also snacked on green rice krispie treats.

Oh no! THIS BOY WAS ATTACKED BY A MOB OF ANGRY LEPRECHAUNS! There's no hope. He's done for. It's the dreaded Clover Disease. uh...Good luck with that!

Hey, I like your hat, wee lassie!

What a sweet green girl!

Uh...Emmett. We LOVE your outfit. You should wear that to school. It looks great. Totally natural.

Check out this little dude's sideburns and beard. Niiiice!

This wee lass is coloring her leprechaun bag. Had to have something to hold all our gold! The kids ran around the backyard playing Band-Aid Tag while the Big Leprechauns hid their treasure(better known as gold-wrapped candy) around the house. My, oh my! Searching for hidden candy is bound to create some craziness! It was a riot!

Oh! NO!
We've been invaded by
little green men
(and women)!!!!!!!!!

They're loud!
And they laugh A LOT!!

Run for your lives!!!!!!!!!!

HA! We had such a blast.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Fancy Shmancy Photo Shoot on Sundi's Porch

Last month I found out I recieved a scholarship to Chautauqua this summer (it's a super fantastic conference in New York....I'm still amazed that I actually get to go!).

Last week I had to send in a photo and some bio info for a brochure they put together of all the attendees.

I asked my super sweet friend, Sundi, if she could snap some pics since she is very good with a camera. Then, came the hard part! I had to pic which one to use!

I like this serious one, but....well, it's a bit too serious! It looks like I'm
having far too many deep thoughts.....

I ended up using this one because it looks good in black and white and it's a bit more casual....

Sundi was so great to do this for me. We just went out on her porch and she snapped a few shots. Eazy Peazy. She's so good!

Thanks Sundi!