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6 posts from November 2008

November 27, 2008

Giving Thanks

Thanksgiving 2008 a blog
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It's been a while since I last posted and that's mostly because I couldn't just put up some pictures of Thanksgiving and say nothing about what I'm most thankful for.  And I couldn't post something else and leave this very important day without some form of meaningful reflection. 

When my spirituality was closer to the surface in my everyday life, I used to pray regularly and I had a self-imposed ritual/requirement of giving thanks for eleven things before asking God for even one extra blessing.   The Eleven Things were quite often just ordinary little minor things because I also pledged not to repeat myself and list prior blessings.  It was easy and my list often included stuff like "I'm thankful that I didn't get hit by that big blue truck when I made that illegal u-turn in front of my office today" or "Thank You for inspiring me to stand in the fastest line at the grocery store tonight because I got to pick up Michael three minutes early at school and hear all about how his best friend, Joey, threw up during recess.

This year, I'm starting over from scratch and counting my Eleven Largest Blessings from number 1.  It's hard because I have to list the TOP eleven things.   No doubt, I'll probably notice something I left out and I'll have to fight the urge to edit this post (but I won't).  There's always time to give thanks for those things later.  If only we remember to take the time to do so.

Here are my 11 Blessings:

  1. The love of a truly honorable man
  2. My three amazing children
  3. Loyal friends and loving family
  4. A healthy and happy heart
  5. My City (I can't think of any place I'd rather be)
  6. Traditions
  7. A sense of belonging.  Of being a meaningful part of something much larger
  8. Having "enough" (full refrigerator, full gas tank, etc)
  9. Humor:  The blessing of being able to laugh and smile and have hope even when times are hard
  10. My hobbies and the modest talent God has given me to participate in them 
  11. Freedom to choose:  My political beliefs, my religion, and - ultimately - my happiness. 

Thanksgiving 2008 pg 2 blog 
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You might notice that we've got spoons hanging from our noses in the picture above.  These spoons are part of our family silver and some pieces are more than 100 years old!   Possibly even 150 years old! Just think of all the noses those spoons have hanged from before ours!  ;)

PS:  If you're inclined to list your top eleven blessings, please link here because I'd love to read them!

November 19, 2008


When I saw that the newest theme from We Picture This was "Eyes", I immediately thought of <this> photo from our recent trip to China.  Then I realized that even though the photo was sentimentally significant (and pretty fun and interesting) it wasn't technically very high quality.  So I searched my archives and finally decided to just shoot some new pics instead.  

I enticed the girls into the backyard this afternoon in the hope of taking some pictures that really captured the essence of their personality via their eyes.  The goal was a photo with their eyes as the focal point.  I tried to crop these to achieve that effect but liked them better in their original form. 

So, these are straight out of the camera - no editing at all.  I know they won't win any Photo-Excellence awards but I was really happy with the results anyway.  

For their part, the girls got to pick one delectable piece of Halloween candy from their combined stash of Halloween goodies.  Honestly, they'll do just about anything for a piece of Halloween candy!

Here are my babies with their happy, sparkling eyes.  Maddy on the top in red and Gwenny below.

Mamarazzi eyes blog 
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(click here for more) ""Eyes"" »

November 08, 2008

Maddy's Art



A few extra comments about our little artist:

  • First of all, when you look at Maddy's art, keep in mind that our Baby Rembrandt is just barely four years old.  She was born 7/31/2004 (4 pounds, 2 ounces) and was probably at least two months premature.   It was only just this past week that she finally hit 30 pounds in weight!  She's a peanut but she's a powerhouse!   When you consider her young age, her art skills are even more impressive!
  • Maddy is meticulous (almost to a fault).  For example, if she makes a tiny mistake when she signs her name, she'll throw the whole picture away.  I can't tell you how many times I've waited until she wasn't looking and raced to the trash to retrieve something I thought was really special. 
  • I love this pickle. Pickle_2   It was one of the things I pulled from the trash because she was frustrated that she signed her name with a tiny little wiggle on one of the D's.  I cropped that part off because I knew she'd be horrified to see it later.  That's my goofy little girl!  We're constantly reminding her that perfection isn't a goal you have to achieve right away.  For the most part, she understands this and the next bullet point is a good example.
  • She thinks her animals are more special if they have more than the four legs God gave them.    Here's her giraffe.  Giraffe_multi_leg_2I asked her how many legs he had and she said there were six -- and she was pretty darn happy about that!  I just hugged her and told her he was the most awesome giraffe ever!
  • When she drew a cherry last week, I told her how to spell it and she wrote it down.  A few days later, she drew another cherry and wrote "CHRRY" under it totally from memory!  My girl rocks!
  • She wrote "Mommy" above the prettiest flower I've ever seen and brought it to me while I was in the bathroom putting on my makeup (see top left photo, above).   It made me cry then I had to put my makeup on all over again!  I'm so blessed to have Maddy in my life!

November 06, 2008

Backyardigans Live

We're big Backyardigans fans here so when we saw an advertisement for a live performance of our favorite singing fivesome, we jumped on it. It was pretty fun! The girls totally loved it and they've been begging all day to do it again. However, at about $40 per ticket, that's not likely.  But we're happy to have done it once!

Who's your favorite?  My favorite is Uniqua.  I have no idea what the heck she's supposed to be but she's cute.  I get the pirate song stuck in my head and it's there for days!

November 02, 2008

30 years ago today.... (and pizza!)

Today is a bit of an historical day for me and I'm almost embarrassed to mention it because it makes me feel so very old. But here's the short version of the story: I graduated High School when I was 16 and joined the Army just a few weeks after turning 17.  My active duty date was exactly (gulp, cough...) thirty years ago today. 

THIRTY YEARS??   OMG... is that possible? 


Wanna see a picture of me at age 17?  Yes, That's Farrah Faucet hair.  For anyone interested, my MOS was "Legal Clerk/Court Reporter" (extra bonus points to anyone who comments and can identify my rank and the unit I was assigned to). 

After a few years, I went to flight school and served the rest of my military service as helicopter pilot.  Ten years in total.

Today, I'm a stay-at-home-mom of three kids: a 20 year old son (away in college) and two 'twin' 4 year old daughters.    Having two very little girls does more to make me feel younger than any cosmetic product or surgical procedure!  Having a younger husband helps too!  ;) 

Maddy had a significant "Big 30" event today too:  She finally hit thirty pounds!  Before you shrug this off, consider that she's nearly four and a half years old and almost forty inches tall!  Thirty pounds is a milestone most kids pass by the time they turn three but it was starting to look like Maddy would have to be in a car seat until she was 12!  She still might (since the weight minimum is 40) but at least she's finally making progress towards that goal!  By comparison, Gwen is 16 pounds heavier even though she's only a smidgen over one month older.  But what Maddy lacks in girth, she makes up for in every other way!  Here she is with our friend, Benjamin, today.  They're marching in leaves and obviously enjoying every crunchy moment!


(Above) After a busy afternoon at the park with Benjamin and his mom and dad, everyone took a nap then got up and made pizza for dinner.    Here's Gwen (right) and Maddy (left) rolling the dough and putting the sauce, cheese and all the yummy toppings in place! 

Honestly, this was the best pizza I've ever eaten!  My girls must have added just the perfect amount of sweetness just by dipping their little fingers in!

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