Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A New Word

I went back and read my new years post from last year. I did a fairly good job of keeping my resolutions. I didn't really scrap more in 2008 but I do think that I managed to change the way I do it. A lot less focus on the "stuff" and more focus on the photos and the story.

I do think that my word for 2008, "prioritize" was in the forefront of my mind this year. I definitely made a priority out of my health. I tried not to waste time on things that were not a priority.

It's time to pick a new word for this year.

Main Entry:
1 a: to bring into focus b: to adjust the focus of (as the eye or a lens)
2: to cause to be concentrated <focused their attention on the most urgent problems>
3: to concentrate attention or effort
I want to really block out the white noise and focus on things that are important. Focus on goals. Focus on family and friends. To live without distraction.

Share your word with me!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Tuna Detox

"Hi, my name is Ellie and I am a tuna addict".

That's what Ellie might say. Today she told me it was her favorite food in the whole world. Lucas picked nuts (??). I knew she would pick tuna.

I know you have to be careful how much tuna a child, or anyone for that matter, consumes. So, I decided to look up the guidelines. Ellie probably eats 2 cans a week on average. For her age and weight, it is recommended that she only eat half a can per week. Uh oh!

Of course, I decided to torture myself and look up Mercury Poisoning. That lead to pictures of "Minamata Disease" where thousands of people became disfigured and died from mercury in shellfish. I started picturing Ellie with a third arm and all sorts other stuff.

Have you ever done that? Looked up some benign symptom like a headache and all of a sudden you have a brain tumor? I need to step away from Google.

So now I guess we are on tuna detox. This will not be easy, my friends. This girl loves her tuna.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

A little of this, a little of that

It has been snowing a lot for Seattle. I can't remember the last time it snowed like this. It has been kind of nice though with the kids and husband home from school and work (he has been behaving for the most part)!

Baxter taking a little nap:

Let it snow!

I also discovered that Ellie most likely has Cold Urticaria.

"Cold Urticaria (essentially meaning "cold hives") is an allergy where hives, or large red welts form on the skin after exposure to a cold stimulus. The welts are usually itchy and often the hands and feet will become itchy and swollen as well. Hives vary in size from about the size of a pencil eraser to as big as a quarter or larger."

I first noticed it this summer when she would swim in the cold water of the backyard pool. I thought she was just sensitive to the cold water. But this week with the cold weather, it has become apparent that it is more. Need to get to the Dr!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Holiday Fun

Top reason I don't put the Santa hat on Maile anymore:

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


We got a LOT of snow today and it seems like it may keep on coming.

At around 7 pm, we headed outside with Lucas to play in the snow. One by one, the neighbors came out and we had an absolute blast of a snowball fight. It has been a long time since I have laughed so hard!

Baxter came out too but was not too crazy about the cold. He is still so little and gets cold so easily. He is passed out on the hot carpet right now.

Now comes the aftermath. Icy roads, canceled school, husband home from work!

New Baby

This is Baxter! He is 9 weeks old now and such a cutie. He keeps me on my toes though. It's like having a newborn.
Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

A Little Bird Told Me

Howdy strangers!

I am not sure how many of you are aware but I try to have a one touch rule when it comes to my mail. This means that I pick it up, touch it once, and deal with it. If that means I read it and it goes in to the recycling right away, I have accomplished my system of organization and clutter control.

Well, I am in the dog house now! 2 of my very best friends have cut me from their card lists this year!

I have been a little too ruthless with Christmas cards. Here is what I do. I pick it up from the mail, read it, adore the photo, get warm feelings for whomever sent it. I take time to look at the card and read the sentiment. Then, I recycle it. It goes into the bin.

I do, from time to time, keep photos. But what I don't do is make a little Christmas card display, keep them in a box to look a later, make ornaments with them, shove them in my window blinds, use them in my scrapbooks.

It's not because I am heartless. It is simple: I am trying to control paper from taking over my life.

Not everyone keeps Christmas cards. I enjoy getting cards. I just don't need to hold the card to keep your beautiful sentiments in my heart. I love you!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Mommy Files

Do you ever have the moments where you realize your kids really need "the smackdown"?

Over the past while, it has become clear that mine do. Especially my boy child.

So last night, after a stressful day, we had a family meeting. The 4 of us sat down and Daddy and I began said "smackdown".

I know right now when my Mum reads this, she is thinking "Oh, don't be so hard on those kids!!!!!". But then a part of me knows she has seen the behavior I am talking about, so she'll get over it :)

What are those behaviors?
  1. Being sassy
  2. Yelling at each other
  3. Not picking up after themselves
  4. Being negative & excessive complaining

Daddy and I came up with a yellow and red card system. Kind of like in soccer. Certain offenses get a yellow card, others are automatic red. 3 yellows makes a red. If you receive a red, there is no board game at night (or tv before bed). We play a game every night except Thursdays and Fridays and the kids love this so it is great currency.

Automatic red cards are: yelling, any physical things like hitting, big crying/whining meltdowns.
Yellow cards include: sassy comments, sassy actions (sighing, rolling eyes, folding arms, stomping feet), negative comments/complaints.

Any toys left not put away at bedtime after a clean up reminder are put away for one week.

Smackdown started this morning. As of right now, Lucas has 1 yellow card ("Why do you always BOSS ME AROUND?????") and Ellie is clear.

I will let you know how it goes.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Craft Club, Maiden Voyage

We had the very first day of our Craft Club over the weekend and I have to say, it was a great success!

We made the photo stars and we had 8 attendees, varying from very crafty to craft novices. Everyone got the pictures and paper on the stars and most people got them embellished as well.

It was such a fun evening. To see my friends working so hard to create the project that I selected and to be so enthusiastic about our Craft Club. I see it bringing all of us closer together and promoting the creativity that we all love in our lives. Being creative, to me, is so rewarding and it affects positively many aspects of my life.

A picture of Jessica's star:

Monday, September 29, 2008

More Pictures

A new umbrella:

Watching a movie with her cousin:

Dinner time!

Sunday, September 28, 2008


I received some pictures today that I figured I would post. As most of you know, El is in Japan right now for a month. She seems to be having a wonderful time, surrounded by family and loads of attention.

Yesterday, she participated in a summer festival in downtown Tokyo where some of her cousins twice/once/whatever removed live. There was kid participation and, though she wouldn't put on the Japanese traditional clothes for the festival, she did participate!

I can't help but think about how fortunate she is to be experiencing all of this! The opportunity for a child to visit a foreign country and experience cultural differences really is priceless. To know that her immediate environment is not "all there is" and to instill a sense of adventure in a young child. I believe it will be something she looks back on for a long time and hopefully will start her global view at a young age.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

We love you, Grandpa!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Is this creepy?

I love this chandelier. Would it be creepy over a dining table?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

This Captures It

A little scenario that captures the spirit of my lovely neighborhood:

I am inside starting to put dinner on. Doorbell rings and someone walks right in so I know it is a neighbor or neighbor child.

Me: Hello?
Micah (age 30 with 3 kids): Hey, I need a favor.
Me: What's up.
Micah: Well, I am just starving. Tia is nursing the baby and I am starving. Can you make me something to eat?
Me: **blank stare**
Micah: Please?
Me: I suggest you go home and make something for yourself.
Micah: But Tia's nursing the baby so she can't.
Me: Are you SERIOUSLY asking me to make you some food?
Micah: Yes.
Me: How about a sandwich?
Micah: OK :)

I love it here. I really do!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

School Day

It's back to school day for the kids, and the first day of Kindergarten for Lucas!

Everything went well and he got on the bus with a whole lot of confidence for such a little guy, with Mum fighting back the tears and putting on a brave smile.

A little wave goodbye, a small, worried smile through the window. And off he went.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Hannah Montana '08

We are back safely from Montana, or "Hannah Montana" as Ellie calls it! We really had a wonderful trip. It was great from start to finish. Here is a recap with a boatload of photos.

We drove the first night to a small town named Kellogg, Idaho. We stayed at a really nice resort called Silver Mountain Resort. The staff were fabulous and the facility was amazing. We had a one bedroom suite complete with kitchen, dishwasher, fridge, oven, microwave...a washer and dryer, balcony with chairs. It was all very nice and decorated like a lodge.

The hotel also had a huge water park that was free to lodge guests. It was SO much fun. It really brought out the kids in Dama and I. Pictures later in this post!

The next morning, we headed off to Glacier National Park. On the way, we stopped at a bison reserve.

They have bison, elk, deer, bears, mountain goats and other wildlife in the range. You basically drive in and you can drive for hours looking for wildlife. The bison are easy to spot as they don't mind the heat. We were limited on time so we could not stay for long.

Here is a display of the elk horns found in the reserve:

We spotted the bison right away:

After a pretty long drive, we made it to Glacier!

We camped at the Fish Creek Campground. It was SO quiet. The quiet was almost deafening! Definitely no constant traffic noise like Seattle has!

Cooking dinner over the fire:

There are bears in the park so any time you leave your campsite, you have to pack up EVERYTHING. And I mean everything. You can only leave your chairs and firewood out and that is it.

That evening, we went to Lake McDonald which, of course, meant packing everything up before we left.
The next morning, we went back to the lake and played for a while. So beautiful:

Then it was off for a hike. We decided to hike up to Avalanche Lake. It was quite a hike, let me tell you! But the kids did great and I am sure they were keeping the bears at bay with their small fits of whining!

Beautiful crystal waterfalls along the way:

We finally made it! The pictures do not do it justice. It was absolutely breathtaking!

We headed back west and decided to stay another night at Silver Mountain Resort. Here are pictures of the water park fun!

There is a huge water bucket that dumps out at the top of the park every 5 minutes or so. It cause a huge tidal wave!

Here are the boys waiting for it to dump:

Lucas barreling down the water slide! They had great kid size ones and also adult sized ones. The great thing was that the kids could go on ALL of them. On some, we just had to go with them. It was a great place.

Look at this crazy surfer dude on the waves! Mummy did it too but when I lost my bikini bottom the first ride, yeah that was my first and last time :)

Related Posts with Thumbnails