Friday, February 26, 2010

Photo Friday ~ 8 ~

This photo is from our little impromtu trip to Santa Monica Pier.  I'm not sure if they knew I was taking this picture or not, but I like the feeling that it evokes.  The contentedness that they feel with each other along with the peacefulness of the ocean in the background.  Sigh...  I just like it.  Simple.  Beautiful.  Timeless.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

LA Trip Part 3 ~ West Coast Party ~

We've been to a lot of fun weddings.  And this was the last of our close group of friends to get married, so they had some pressure on them.  Let me tell you, they totally lived up to the expectations in more ways than one.  First, I'm just gonna post some pictures of the lovely wedding and then I'll get into details...

My man looking like a stud waiting to escort his bridesmaid.
The kiss!  It's official!  Okay, so they've already been married since October, but now it's really, really official.
Happy, beautiful couple.
Walking through the bubbles.  Loved her dress and hair!
Have I mentioned what a gorgeous couple they are!?
Posing for the paparrazi.

The wedding was beautiful, but the reception was a blast.  As we walked in for the cocktail hour we discovered that they had turned the place into a casino.  They had blackjack and roulette.  I've never really gambled and since it was fake money I was all for it!  They had a contest going that for every $100 chip you cashed in, you got a raffle ticket for a raffle later in the evening.  There was a snuggie up for raffle...I was on a mission.  At one point I had over $1000.  Go me!
They put all the cool kids at our table.  The ace of spades table.

You know how some people do a slide show at their wedding reception?  Well, they had one with all the requisite photos of them as kids and then them together.  But they went one step further.  How you say?  The last photo on their slide show (drum roll please) was an ultrasound picture.  Yep, they're having a baby!!  We all knew they wanted to have kids right away, and they weren't kiddin.  I am so incredibly happy for them!  We had been speculating all weekend long.  The bride confessed to me that she had to have her dress taken out a few days before the wedding and I thought that seemed a little out of the norm for her.  I mean most brides don't gain weight right before their wedding.  Then, of course, we were watching to see if she drank any alcohol and I can say that none touched her lips the entire weekend.  So, while it wasn't a complete shocker, it was still the cutest way to tell everyone. 

Mr. and Mrs. or should I say Mommy and Daddy.

After that, the party got started.  The Filipino's really know how to party.  I felt like I was at a club.  They even threw out little glow bracelets.  So, I apologize to anyone whose photo you're about to see, but these pictures just make me laugh so much that I couldn't not share them with the world (or at least my tiny corner of the cyber world). 

A perk of being the one holding the incriminating photos of myself!
Just a shot of the beautiful view from the reception site.

While I'm glad that all of our friends are finally married, it's kinda bittersweet.  We all live scattered throughout the country so it seems the only time we all get together is for weddings.  The men have all vowed that we will make a point to get together once a year anyway, so we'll see.  They already made some sort of schedule even.  Can't wait to meet up again, guys!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

LA Trip Part 2 ~ Santa Monica Pier ~

On the morning of the wedding we got up with only one thing planned...a Starbucks run.  Gotta have my coffee or I get grouchy.  Some other good friends ours happened to arrive in the middle of the night and they decided to join us.  So off we went and since they only had one day before they had to fly back home, we were trying to think of something that we could do before the wedding which was in the early afternoon.  They, like us, really only had one objective - get to a beach.  Neither of them had seen the west coast before.  So we asked the Starbucks girl for directions to the highway and we held our breaths in hopes of not encountering any of the traffic that LA is so notorious for.  It paid off.  We got to the beach in no time and it was definitely worth it, even if we were only there for about 30 minutes.  It was 30 minutes of heaven. 

This is me and my man.  Look, we even still have our Starbucks in hand!
Remind me again why we don't move here?
The Pier.  My kids would love this place.
Taking a walk to the end of the pier and enjoying the view along the way.
Check out the beautiful colors of these birds.
Our east coast friends, they're still newlyweds.

I feel like I'm beating a dead horse here, but I could look at these pictures all day.  The beach and ocean just make me feel so refreshed.  I wonder if it has the same effect if you live there all the time.  I mean, would I be happier?  Less stressed?  More relaxed?  More things to ponder while I look out the window at the bleakness of the winter snow.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

LA Trip Part 1 ~ Korean Barbeque ~

In case you didn't already know, my husband and I spent the weekend in Los Angeles.  We went to celebrate the wedding of some old friends, actually their second wedding, and to quote someone toasting them it was the best second wedding we've ever been to.  They were married already in a small outdoor ceremony in Ohio where the groom's parents live.  The bride is from LA and most of her large family is there.  Since his father is in poor health and wouldn't be able to travel to LA for the wedding, it made sense to just have two separate ceremonies.  And they didn't disappoint.  But, I am getting ahead of myself here because this post is supposed to be about Korean Barbeque.  Don't worry, I'll be blogging all week about our trip so I'll get to the wedding soon enough.  First though, let me share a little of our eating experience with you, because what is a good trip without good food?  The bride and groom had planned for a group of us to go out the first night of our trip and I try to think of myself as an adventurous eater, but that's really pushing it.  I will try new things to a certain extent, but I am a little picky, so I wasn't sure what to expect when we showed up at this Korean restaurant.  All I kept hearing is, "I hope you like meat". 

They seated us in a private room with a long table that had three separate grills built into the table.  Then they proceeded to bring us all these little dishes with garnishes for our meat.  I'm not really sure what they all were, but I did try some of them.
You can't have meat without beer.  These bottles were quite big.
And then they give you tiny glasses to drink it from.  And yes, he is trying to look ridiculous in this pic.  I hope.
And then they bring out the meat.  This is only a fraction of what they brought.  There were also two other types of meat with trays like this too!  They weren't kidding that you better like meat!  And yes, that is raw.
Then you just dump some on the grill and get to work.  I somehow ended up with the job of cooking which made me a little nervous since I've never cooked like this before, but it was easy.
I don't even remember what kind of meat this was, but it was good.  Mmmm...
It didn't stop with the meat either, they just kept bringing all different types of side dishes too.  I can't believe the quantity of food we consumed!
People were too busy eating to pose for pics, but here's a shot of one side of our table. 

Thanks to our friends for always introducing us to new things and making it such a great time!  Next up, random fun pictures, a trip to Santa Monica Pier and then the wedding.  Stay tuned...

Monday, February 22, 2010

Photo Friday ~ 7 ~

I know, it's Monday.  But to make up for the fact that this post is 3 days late, I'm posting 3 photos.  Hope that eases the pain a little for you.  Seriously though, I had a hard time picking just one.  These were taken last Thursday while I was in Los Angeles.  My husband took me straight from the airport to Venice Beach to surprise me since he knows how much I love the beach and I just kept talking about how I didn't care what we did while we were in LA as long as I got to put my feet in the sand once.  And let me tell you, after weeks of snow, there is nothing more refreshing to one's body and spirit than standing next to the ocean with your toes in the sand.  I could've stayed there for hours or days or years.  Every time I visit a beach of any kind I just feel that pull to move there.  I have to keep reminding myself why we don't want to move and each time the reasons feel a little less important.  Maybe someday, we'll see.  The future is bright and wide open.  Said like someone who just came back from a trip to the beach.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Climbing the Walls

Literally.  She is climbing the walls.  And I have no one to blame but myself.  You see, I thought it would be fun to show my daughter something I used to do when I was little.  I didn't really think it would catch on quite like it did.  This is where she spends much of her day now.

Okay, so technically it's a door frame.  This is the most common pose she does, although she can go all the way to the ceiling.  This usually involves her little brother running between her legs in attempts to give me a heart attack worrying that she may fall on his head.
She also loves when I pretend not to see her and walk right into her which results in her being wrapped around me.  Which I have to admit I love too.

A variation on her classic pose.  She is always trying new ways to put her little fingerprints on the walls.

Check out her iron cross!  She's got some serious muscle! 

Please, please do not show these pictures to your children!  You do not want to end up like me endlessly saying "Get off the wall!" a hundred times a day.  Although it is an efficient way to get them to burn off energy.  Maybe I need to look into some rock climbing lessons...

Friday, February 12, 2010

Photo Friday ~ 6 ~

This is not the "best" photo that I took this week, but sometimes it's more about the meaning than the lighting and the aperture and all that technical stuff.  Sometimes you just want the photo to connect with you in some way.  You want it to capture a moment that you might have otherwise forgotten.  This is a photo of my son sitting with my Grandpa, his Great Grandpa, who he calls Papa.  They were watching cartoons together and I just love the way my son is so relaxed with him.  If you know my son, he is not one to show affection to anyone except me without some sort of coercion.  But he has a special connection with his Papa and I love that.  He's my kid's only true grandpa since my father passed away and I don't know how much time they will have left to enjoy him, so I cherish every minute that they get to spend with him.  I'm so glad I was able to snap this before they were aware that I was there.  Such a sweet moment that I will always treasure.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Future of Medicine

I was busy today after lunch with 5 kids at my house, which is actually a typical day, but while I was tending to the babies, I realized that there was some interesting play going on with the 3 year olds.  The girl I babysit announced that she was sick and needed to see a doctor and then promptly threw herself on the floor and played a very convincing patient.  So the boys put on their stethescopes and got right down to business. 

I love the way she is really getting into her 'sick' character.  She didn't crack a smile once during the whole examination.

Hmm...future doctor?  A momma can dream.

CPR to the shoulder?  Not sure about your medical future, buddy.

Checking for frogs in the ear, which is actually considered a good thing, if you're 3.  Gotta make sure they ribbit.  Nice healthy frogs living in there.

I'm happy to report that after a dose of pretend medicine she is fully healed.  Moments like these make me so grateful I can stay home and watch my kids interact with their little friends.  Too cute!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Coming Back for More

We've already had a few snow days this season and I love snow for about a day and then I'm over it. If it snowed one day a year, a nice beautiful snow, and then melted the next day and didn't snow again for another 365 days I would be perfectly happy with that. My kids on the other hand, I'm not so sure.  Apparently it takes a good 30 years or so for the novelty to wear off.  My husband went out to shovel the driveway the other day and so the kids had to go out too...which meant I had to go out too, and of course, I took some pictures.  My daughter never ceases to amaze me.  She is such a girl most of the time that when her other side comes out I love it.  She was all about the snowball fighting this time.  Which is why I'm so glad my kids have a dad who actually plays with them.  It's one of my favorite things to watch, my husband playing with our kids and watching their little faces lighting up with joy every moment he's paying attention to them.  How come mom's don't get that look? 

Look at that sweet little face.  She wouldn't dare throw a snowball at her poor mother...

Um, yeah, she would.

Torturing your own children is one of the great privileges of parenthood.

Nice throw, baby girl!  Get him back!

Right after I snapped this the snowball hit her in the back and she fell just like she'd been shot.  Awesome.

It's okay, people, she came right back for more with a snowball bigger than her head.

The shock on her face when he caught it in his shovel was priceless!

Don't worry, she has ninja like reflexes and got away!

Okay, so maybe the snow isn't that bad, but seriously, enough already!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Photo Friday ~ 5 ~

This week flew by me and I got out my camera today to see what to post for my photo friday and realized that I hadn't taken any pictures since those of my son in the tub last week!  So...all the kids are sleeping or at school and I don't really want to cheat and use a photo from a different week.  I started looking around my house for something interesting to take a picture of and realized that I don't really like to take pictures of things other than people.  Especially nothing in my house...boring.  I tried, trust me, they were boring.  So, that brings me to this self-portrait.  Probably not the most flattering picture of myself but I still like it.  At least it's interesting.  That mirror is from my grandparents and it's so old that you can't quite get it clean all the way, you know what I mean?  I love that.  And it has this crack in it.  I got it from their basement a few years ago.  I'm known for shopping in their basement.  I love old stuff and if it's sentimental then that's even better.  I can't remember the story of the crack, but no one else wanted it because of it, and I really liked it, except for the crack, so I decided to take it and find something tall to cover the crack.  I do actually have something in front of it, but I kinda think the crack adds character.  I also like the fact that you can see my camera in this photo because, hi, I like to take pictures, so it fits.  I don't like the fact that I definitely need to get some more sleep and taking pictures in a room painted yellow tends to make you look, well, yellow.  But hey, I'm getting out my camera and practicing, which is the whole point.  And besides, I'm trying to take my own advice and stop worrying about being perfect.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

When Babies Attack

Pinky:  "What is this strange creature encroaching on my territory?!  I must stop it immediately!"
Pinky:  "Hmmm...what is that delicious smell?  I must hold on to this!"
Polka Dot:  "Mmwa Ha Ha!  She is falling into my trap perfectly!"
Polka Dot:  "That's it, I almost have her.  She will soon be in my clutches forever."
Polka Dot:  "Oh no, my overwhelming urge to clap is taking over!  No!"
Pinky:  "I must get that paci, quick while she is distracted trying to copy my thumbsucking!  My plan is working!"
Pinky:  "Wait, what just happened?"  Polka Dot:  "I have no idea, but it was fun.  Let's clap."


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