Sunday, December 21, 2008
Martha Stewart labels
Delight.com gift tags
Christmas gift tags from Mushy
Sugarloop gift tags
Printable Holiday gift tags from Papercrave
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
I give up! I can't figure out how to embed, capture the screen, or whatever it is I need to do to put this video on here. But here is a great video of Santa letting Elizabeth know whether she made it on the NICE list. Amanda was very nervous before watching her video. She confessed that she used the word "stupid" yesterday and hoped that Santa would forgive her. He did. Jack hasn't received his message yet, but he is still way too cute to sweat it.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Amanda: Elizabeth! I had a scary dream last night.
Elizabeth: You did?
Amanda: You were there and I was there, and we were in a different house, and we were trying to go upstairs and there was boomerangs flying and one hit you and your body opened, and there was bones and blood and then you was dead.
Elizabeth: Amanda, if a lightening bolt hit me and made a hole, I wouldn't die, I would just have to go to the hospital and they would sew me back up.
Amanda: Ohhhhhhhhh! I was scared that you died.
Elizabeth: It isn't a boomerang, it was lightening bolt.
Amanda: It was boomerangs.
Elizabeth: Lightening bolt.
Amanda: No, 'member like on Peter Pan when the pirates shoot the boomerangs from the machines on their ship?
Elizabeth: Yeah, those are lightening bolts that come from those machines.
Amanda: They're orange?
Elizabeth: No, they're black.
Amanda: Oh, well that's what I dreamed about. Those things made you die. But I didn't know you didn't die!
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Happy 6th birthday Elizabeth! She had her Build-a-Bear party on Saturday. This was the second time around for the Nicholson gang so they all knew the drill.
Monday, December 8, 2008
Rainbow cupcake with vanilla frosting, found here.
Blueberry Ricotta Almond cupcakes with blue cream cheese frosting found here.
Triple Vanilla Cupcake (minus the crumbled cookie on top) found here.
I will take Jack for a haircut, then brush his hair, remind Elizabeth that she doesn't have to pose, and remind Amanda that sun in her eyes will not hurt her.
Christmas card picture, take two...
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
This is even better than the 24 hour "A Christmas Story" marathon! Ebay is having "A Christmas Story" charity auction with 100% of proceeds going to The Wounded Warrior Project. What does the winning bidder receive? They get to be Ralphie this Christmas!
The winner and 3 guests get to stay at Ralphie's house for Christmas, ride in the family car, and have Christmas Eve dinner at a Chinese restaurant. There will even be a special Christmas Eve "major award" FRA-GI-LE crate delivery. Decoder pins, bunny suit, and Lifebuoy soap? Check.
And what about the official Red Ryder carbine action two-hundred shot range model air rifle with a compass in the stock and this thing that tells time? Just look behind the desk!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Jack has seen and used the penguin nebulizer before, but he was really too little to understand what was going on. This time, he went crazy as he watched Elizabeth and had to be held back so he wouldn't attack the penguin. He is still looking for it!
Also, the title is a reference to a terrible Brittany Spears song (actually called "Womanizer") that has been everywhere recently. I don't know why, but I now have "nebulizer, nebulizer, you need a nebulizer" stuck in my head.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Here is Amanda telling the very patient Build-a-Bear party leader the name of her dog: Princess. She also named Jack's koala bear for him: Prince.
Jack loved the cupcakes. Right next to this truck (which was not one of Amanda's presents) there was a Hair Cuttery. After looking at these pictures, I'm surprised someone didn't just come out and grab Jack for a quick haircut!
Happy Birthday Amanda, we love you!
Friday, November 7, 2008
P.S. Nikki is so proud that my first blog posting is under this title. I have to admit, I am a little giddy knowing "Hot Nose Burp" is somehow being forced onto Tightywhitey!
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Monday, November 3, 2008
Friday, October 31, 2008
This Halloween is especially happy because Elizabeth finally woke fever free and held down half of a carnation instant breakfast milkshake. She has been battling a nasty sinus infection and spent the past few days with fever and a look on her face that says "I will barf on you." It's also ribbon week so she came home from school on Monday with a drug-free message bracelet. For the rest of the week she was supposed to do wacky things like wear her clothes inside out to show school solidarity on saying no to drugs. Instead, she spent the rest of the week on a sofa being force fed Cefprozil, C-Phen DM, Tylenol and Motrin. I think the magic bracelet (she was asked to wear it all week) increased Elizabeth's gag reflex which made medicine taking an all day duck and cover kind of event. The "good" medicine (try telling that to a 5 year old in fetal position hugging a pillow) finally seems to be working and Elizabeth is more Elizabeth-like today.
Jay is waiting for us at the beach, and I must admit that I used this fact constantly to force the kids to cooperate. I sent the Halloween costumes down with him so I would have less to pack, so it's a good thing Elizabeth's fever is gone. I'm not sure how I would have explained to the kids that we had to stay home and they had no costumes.
Amanda and Jack provided some much needed comic relief this week. Like when Jack hid the car keys (dropped them over the baby gate in the playroom) and then watched me search frantically so that we could get Amanda to school. Okay, that one wasn't funny. Jack clapping when I finally found the keys was a little bit funny. Also funny: when the dryer broke and Amanda told me it just needed new batteries; when the phone rang last night and Amanda came downstairs to tell me that someone was calling my bed; how Amanda still doesn't understand why we won't have Gaga's pumpkin pie when we get to the hotel, because Gaga told her that she would make pumpkin pie the next time we go to the beach.
So tonight, at the "family-friendly" Halloween banquet, if the question is trick or treat, my official answer is: treat, on the rocks, make it strong and keep it coming. Oh, and do I get a bracelet with that?
(Spider is by Katie Pertiet for Designer Digitals)
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Elizabeth and beard Daddy. I made Jay grow a beard so that when Halloween rolled around we could turn it into a perfect Teddy Roosevelt moustache. We were supposed to dress up as Sacagawea and Teddy Roosevelt from Night at the Museum. But I forgot about the costume part. Good idea though, huh?
From front to back, Elizabeth eating a glow stick, Blythe as Freddie Krueger fairy, Jennifer as you betcha Palin, and me as myself holding R2D2. Seriously, would it have killed someone to tell me I was wearing highwaters? At first glance I thought maybe I was just wearing high tops with my jeans tucked in.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Amanda and I went to "Mom's Night" tonight at her preschool. It was the first time Elizabeth didn't get to go, now that she is a big kid kindergartner. Elizabeth was very sad to see us go, so we took this picture of the three of us dressed in our best Hawaiian clothes and accessories.
Amanda had a wonderful time; she fished, she dug for treasure, she learned the hula, and of course she did the standard ring and bean bag tosses. Most of all she "ate snacks" which was her favorite part. It was so nice to spend some one on one time with her. It did feel strange to be there without Elizabeth. And strange to think that soon it will be Jack taking over those halls!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
So, in hopes of sharing the laughs, I've been saving links to blog articles that make me laugh. Here are a few, and I hope they at least force a smile. Just a heads up, the third link does contain some language to describe a fat cat that some may find offensive. I also found it to be the funniest. Go figure.
1. An email that you should NEVER have to send to your guitar teacher (Whoorl)
2. Advice from my Mom, part I and II (Mighty Girl)
3. I am not at all afraid of my cat (Finslippy)
4. An Open Letter To Yankees Regarding Use of the Word "Y'all" (Rocks In My Dryer)
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
I wonder if the neighbors are thinking "now that's one good looking pumpkin head family!" Yeah, probably not. My guess is that they're thinking "why is she sitting outside in sweatpants and bright red lipstick, taking pictures of herself making kissy faces?" Valid question, so I'll answer it. They're yoga pants, I thought red lipstick would look good on a pumpkin, the light is better out here, my 16 month old takes blurry pictures, and I'm not making kissy faces, I'm saying "prune."
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Just my cute and not at all freaky little pumpkin heads. From left to right: Elizabeth, Amanda, Jack and Moose. I saw the idea in a Family Fun magazine, but decided to use actual pictures and let the kids re-assemble their own faces. The cutting out my kid's eyes part was way creepier than I had anticipated. I plan to make Jay and Nikki pumpkin heads when I get more pumpkins. I'd love to call Jay right now and ask him to stop on his way home and pick out a couple of pumpkins that look like our heads. But he would be afraid it was a trap, and he would probably be right. Better for both of us that I pick out my own head.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
The other day I read a story on WISTV about how some people were complaining about a talking doll. The doll giggles, coos, and says "Mama" but people were hearing the doll actually say "Islam is the light." It didn't show a picture of the doll, but I knew the girls both had talking dolls somewhere in the black hole we call a playroom. I didn't think much of it, and just figured it was crazy talk.
Today I came across one of the talking dolls and turned it on just for kicks. I must be crazy because it really does sound like it's saying "Islam is the light." In my excitement I woke Jay who is trying to reboot for a long night of work, but the doll clammed up and refused to speak. So I took this video. Listen to the last few seconds and decide for yourself.
Friday, October 10, 2008
It all went down in music class while everyone was singing and dancing. Elizabeth's good buddy "Joe" somehow spun and hit her mouth with his hand, causing her tooth to fly out. There was blood, they had to stop the music and look for the tooth. Apparently Joe's hand was also cut in the collision, and I certainly look forward to seeing his artistic rendering of the event.
Bring it on, tooth fairy!
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Nikki: Hold still.
Mike: Some day I'm gonna be 6'4" and be able to kick your butt.
Nikki: Yeah right. Just keep that bowling ball head of yours still so I can get a good bounce.
Happy Birthday little brother. Thanks for not throwing me off Mount Haleakala when you had the chance.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
It's obvious that Joe is the class clown and that to Elizabeth, he is as good as Chris Rock. She had similar admiration for the class clown in last year's preschool class. By admiration, I mean she laughs uncontrollably, ensuring that the funny kid has both a purpose and an audience. But last year the funny kid was the teacher's son, so he didn't have much of a leash. This year, the funny kid is telling the class that he and Elizabeth are married and he's writing her love letters.
Elizabeth's class is learning all about correspondence, so each day the students practice writing letters, cards and addressing envelopes. Yesterday she showed me an empty envelope bestowed upon her by Joe. It was just a warm up. Today she came home with a sealed envelope, signed by Joe himself. He apparently gave it to her after saying "I love ya, baby" in a crazy voice. This is what was inside...
Monday, October 6, 2008
The Mike Cupcake. I'm obviously not a food photographer but if you tasted this thing I think we would agree that I can bake a cupcake. Not bragging, just saying. It's good.
This cupcake is for my brother. Happy Birthday Mike! It is the best I could come with to represent the Friendly's Reese's Pieces Sundae in cupcake form. We grew up with Friendly's restaurants all around and this was the best dessert.
For these cupcakes I used a basic chocolate cake, spread a thin layer of peanut butter frosting on top (a little goes a long way, it is very rich), piped on some whipped cream, garnished with some candy pieces (should be actual Reese's Pieces but a mini Fast Break was all I could find) and topped them with a maraschino cherry.
The cupcakes and frosting could all be done ahead of time, but the whipped cream has to be done right before serving. And Mike, since you don't actually live here, I'm considering this the test batch. I will serve your official batch the next time I see you! Amanda's class will have a go at this batch tomorrow.
Hershey's "PERFECTLY CHOCOLATE" Chocolate Cake
2 cups sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water
1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans. 2. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Line muffin cups and fill cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake 22 to 25 minutes. Cool completely. Frost. About 30 cupcakes.
Peanut Butter Frosting
1 cup confectioner's sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/3 cup heavy cream
Place the confectioners' sugar, peanut butter, butter, vanilla, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on medium-low speed until creamy, scraping down the bowl with a rubber spatula as you work. Add the cream and beat on high speed until the mixture is light and smooth.
Whipped Cream Topping
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon confectioner's sugar
In a large bowl, whip cream until stiff peaks are just about to form. Add sugar and beat until peaks form.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
When I saw this picture all I could think of was the movie "A Christmas Story" where they make the little brother Randy "show Mama how the piggies eat" mashed potatoes. Jack doesn't wait to be asked, the piggy face is his new favorite thing.
Friday, September 19, 2008
Amanda: That one.
Elizabeth: You can’t like that one, it’s brown.
Amanda: I like brown.
Elizabeth: You can’t like brown, you’re a girl. Only boys like brown.
Amanda: I like brown and I not a boy.
Elizabeth: Yes you are, if you like brown then I guess you’re just a boy.
Amanda: You has a disgusting mouth.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
When we got to the skating rink we suddenly realized that we had three kids; two kids who have never been on skates, and one who had to be held the entire time. This picture is the only time any of us actually stepped onto the rink, and it lasted 5 minutes.
After the first 20 falls on the carpet, Amanda somehow ended up doing a full side split (10.0!) and was in serious pain for a bit. Jay and I then decided to stay skate free to avoid the domino effect. After Amanda recovered, she and Jay twirled for a few minutes on the actual rink.
Elizabeth had no interest in going onto the actual rink, and spent her time walking with her skates on back and forth along one side of the rink rim. As you can see by the picture, she came up with an interesting solution for getting by someone coming in the opposite direction.
Then there was Jack. Clearly livid that there were no baby skates coming for him, he screamed, wiggled, cried, and did everything he could to try to get out on that rink. During one moment when I let him at least walk around on the carpet, "Boys Only Skate" time had just ended, and a sea of wobbly boys came flying off the rink in every direction. Jack was knocked down and took an elbow to the face. The poor kid (not Jack, the other one) felt so badly, but Jack just stood up and stared at the kid like he was ready for round two.
By the time we left, it was all just a screaming boo-boo mess, and Elizabeth summed it up perfectly when she said "I thought this would be easier!" Me too, me too!
E and A are already asking when we can go back. I think we'll leave Jack with Gaga next time though, and hopefully I'll finally get to see Jay shoot the duck.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
The Amanda, Blythe and Happy magnets must be having a secret tea party together - I haven't been able to find them for a week. Two of my Grandmas are missing as well. No men are among the missing. Weird.
Anyway, here are our magnets!
*Oh, and the "me" and "I" post-its are not there for the purpose of raising narcissists; they are just Elizabeth's first sight words for school. However, they are currently quite appropriate.*
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Friday, September 5, 2008
This was actually about 45 seconds after a very genuine and sweet moment that took place between two sisters. The little sis was crying because it was Friday and she wanted to go to school with her big sis. So the big sis gave the little sis a big hug, kiss on the head, and told her that she loved her.
Then the big sis said "Mom, get a picture of this" and held the pose for just long enough. Note how the little sis has her entire face covered, because, well, it just isn't about the little sis, is it?
Two of three band-aids are also visible, protecting Elizabeth's school playground wounds. Her re-enactments made it quite clear that without these band-aids, the outcome could easily have been amputation.
And do not laugh during re-enactments. They are very serious.
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Just long enough for:
(1) every adult in the infant/toddler room to hold and soothe him;
(2) 4 sugar cookies to be hand fed to him;
(3) him to stay behind at playground time with two doting adults and the whole classroom to explore on his own;
(4) his Mommy to be called and told "we don't know what's wrong with him, he won't stop crying"; and
(5) his Mommy to come pick him up early.
So what happens when Mom gets there? He turns into Joe Cool, pretends he doesn't know who she is, and walks around the room showing off like someone just inflated his manly chest.
Jackboy3 is learning trickery from his sisters. He will be reprogrammed this evening.
Friday, August 29, 2008
Amanda is a dog person. She really wants a dog. But we have a perfectly good cat, Moose, and he doesn't need to be followed around with plastic baggies.
So far Amanda is the only one in this house who is on Team Dog. I'm not sure where Jack will fall, but it doesn't matter because Moose will be crunching the numbers from now on.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Jack and Amanda on the first day of preschool. Well, Amanda is going to preschool. What Jack clearly doesn't realize in this picture is that he is about to spend 3 hours with a room full of toddlers screaming for their Mommies. Mean, mean Mommies.