Saturday, June 27, 2009

Happy 65th Birthday Grandpa!

Grandpa, Grandma, and Chris came to meet Ellie a couple of weeks ago. Mason has been so fascinated with singing "Happy Birthday" and blowing out candles lately that we thought it would be fun to have an early birthday party for Grandpa. June 26th is his true birthday, but since we wouldn't be able to travel to see him that day, this was close enough. Mason showed him our cupcake cookbook and found out that Grandpa wanted chocolate cupcakes with white icing and sprinkles.  

Ellie decided she would keep Grandpa company while Mason and I made the cupcakes.

Mason and I cooked up some chocolate cupcakes and decorated them with whipped cream frosting and sprinkles.  

Josh made ribs, chicken, and asparagus for dinner and then it was time for our birthday dessert.  We sang "Happy Birthday" and tried lighting the candles Mason picked out.  I had not accounted for the wind, so it was a bit of a challenge to keep the candles lit, but we did it.

We are so happy to have had the opportunity to have celebrated your birthday with you even if it was a little early.  We hope your actual birthday was fabulous and that your southern California celebration was filled with love and laughs.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Happy Father's Day!

"I love you Daddy." 

Mason just found his little tiny microphone recorder and was trying to record the above message on it while Josh was outside picking fresh basil from the garden for his homemade pizza.  It is so hot today that playhouse construction has been put on hold until the weather cools off this evening a bit.  Instead, Josh has been on a cooking streak today. He made chicken in the solar oven. He made a raspberry dessert. He made his own dough and is now keeping cool by making homemade pizza in the hot indoor oven.  

I love that he loves the creative art of cooking.  Especially when I am feeling like the only thing I cook up lately is milk for Ellie.  While Josh was making his pizza, Mason said, "I'm going to make baby sister into a pizza."  I thought he was thinking of making Ellie into a pizza like one of his favorite books, Pete's A Pizza. Instead he found his little baby doll, a blanket, and a book called Slug and went to the table and said he was reading his recipe like daddy and making baby sister into a pizza.  He said the blanket was so she wouldn't get "cauliflower" aka flour on her.  It was all too cute.  

On Father's Day last Sunday, Josh made us homemade cinnamon rolls as the three of us slept in, well two of us anyway.  The third was unable to move from her location so she was content just looking around.

When we finally all got up we took the party outside to enjoy our tasty treats.  Thank you Josh for being the wonderful father you are to our kids.  I love all you do for us and look forward to many more amazing meals, adventures, laughs, and all around good times with you.  

Happy Father's Day.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Art of Summer

Today I was inside feeding Ellie and Mason was outside with Daddy.  I was gearing up for a day of planting our corn in the side garden.  Unfortunately, the cool weather we have been having melted away just in time for me to be feeling up for some yard work.  As I was bonding with Ellie, Mason trekked in with a big 'ol stack of "washable" ink pads.  They are about the size of salad plates. I asked him what he was doing and he said quite matter of factly, "Bringing these in here." Oh, of course.  Silly question.

I said, "Please don't bring them in here, they are for outside artwork."  

"Why?" Mason asked as he proceeded to venture toward the carpet with them.  

Seeing that I was not going to change a 2 and a half year old's plan with mere words, I had to act quickly. I thought perhaps I could detour him a smidge.  "How about you put them on the kitchen floor instead?"  Cool, that worked and will be way easier to cleanup.  "What are you planning to do with them?" I asked.

"Put them on my hands." said Mason.  

He then proceeded to peel all of the sponge ink pads out of their containers and stack them in a pile of 6.  "Where are you going?" I asked.

"Outside." Whew, okay, still messy, but outside. I can live with that. So I watch him leave.

Minutes later he returned...

"Whoa, what the heck is that?" thought Ellie.

"It's just me, Ellie."

"Oh, my Mason. Why is he all colorful? I want to try that." smiled Ellie. (Too bad she can't escape the loving hands of Mommy or she would be abstract art as well.  I know it's only a matter of time.)

What to do in a situation like this? Embrace the moment and go outside to play in the water.

"I love summer!" sang Mason.  
Me too.

Quotable Quotes

In college I used to love the idea of writing a book of all the quotable quotes I heard in my various adventures.  These would not be famous quotes, rather silly things people say that made me laugh or think. Things you overhear at restaurants, things students say, things rowing coaches say, etc.  I had many a good ones, all that have escaped me as I type, should have written that book.

Today we were outside at the water tub with Mason. The first day we were motivating to weed and plant the side garden corn patch it decided to get blistering hot. The mysterious cool weather vanished just in time. Josh had gone in to get an iced tea and came out with the cap quote. (This is a new collection we have growing on our kitchen windowsill.  Collect caps with interesting quotes for a writing center next year in Josh's classroom.)  I like to hear them, but today's is one that struck me and I would like to save it in my heart and mind.  

"To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world." Unknown

I thought about it as Mason was so excited to show Daddy his jumping skills in the water as he was covered in colorful ink, I was holding a sleeping Ellie, and the wonder of summertime was washing over me.  I couldn't help but let my eyes flood as the magic of the moment overwhelmed me.  

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Our Family Just Got A Little Bit Bigger...

... and filled with a whole lot more love.  We are home, and today is the official due date of our little baby girl.  I am loving that we have spent the last 5 days welcoming her into the world and our family.  As I sit here with her sleeping on me, Mason napping, and Josh heading out to buy some groceries, I finally have a moment to write some of what I have been experiencing as I fall head over heals for my sweet Ellie.  

I couldn't help but get a little misty when I clicked back to 2006, to the first entries Josh wrote about the birth of Mason.  What a life changing experience and so magical!  The way he captured it all in words was so moving then and still today. Mason has brought so much love, laughter, and joy to us these past two and a half years and continues to share his love and excitement for the world as he woke up announcing that he needs some more "too mick" while half asleep this morning.  We had to giggle as we realized that he just declared the need to go buy some more "trail mix" because, "we are all out of some."  One of his rituals at Whole Foods is to stop by the self serve trail mix bar and scoop some "too mick".  This is after he cruises by the meat counter to see if they have any meat samples.  I can't help but wonder what he was dreaming of as his day began.

Okay, my little diversion has made me laugh and get rid of my misty eyes, so I am back to the topic at hand...introducing Mason's little sister.  

There is a song I love about little sisters that sings: 
"I guess we never knew how much we needed you, 
'Til you came into our life, 
Things were pretty nice. 
All the presents round the tree 
Were mostly meant for me, 
But if that's how its gotta be, 
We'll split 'em evenly, 
Because you're worth it, 
Maybe more..."  
"Yeah, we're doing cartwheels and somersaults, 
And it's all your fault,
Yeah it's all your fault.  
It's yoooou we looooove.  
'Mama, can I hold her?' 
It's yoooou we loooove. 
'Yes, put her on your shoulders.'..." 

I am not quite ready to recap the story of her birth, for although it was speedy, yet painful and amazing all in one, I will go out of order to share this first.  Mason has fallen in love with Ellie. "I want to hold her," he told me yesterday.  His baby sister is here. She's real. She is no longer in my belly. "Why she decide to come out, mommy?"

They snuggled on the couch together. 

Ellie pooped on him.

Being the boy he is, Mason returned the love by saying, "I love you Ellie."