75 posts categorized "Gwen and Maddy"

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!

November 01, 2008

Baby Loves Disco (but Elmo probably doesn't!)


It was pouring rain today so a fun indoor activity was just the ticket.  Truly, the perfect time for our 2nd Baby Loves Disco event.  They only do this about 2 times per year and we're already looking forward to the next one. (Our first visit was blogged <here>) 

At first, we weren't so sure we'd like this type of thing but it's only "disco" in a peripheral sense.  I mean, the music is there (in all its Saturday Night Fever goodness) but it's not loud and the dance floor is just a small part of the offerings at this big nightclub.  The sponsors of this event transform the whole place into a very kid friendly experience -- moving tables and chairs to make room to scatter giant pillows, books, hula hoops, crawl-through tunnel thingies, tents, music-making paraphernalia, etc.  There's even a wall covered in paper and a big bucket of crayons so the kids can leave their mark.  And the food is really good:  Several different types of cheeses, crackers, chips, fresh guacamole, pita squares and humus, fresh fruit and fresh veggies and an unlimited supply of juice boxes.  All for the $12 admission price per person.  If mom or dad really want something fancy from the bar, there's a bartender ready to cater to your every whim! 

Gwen found a little friend within minutes of arrival and this little girl followed her everywhere she went.  We took a hundred pictures (as usual) and her blond hair and blue princess dress are visible in just about all of them!  There were at least 150 kids packed into this nightclub but Gwen and her little Princess friend were constantly together.

To everyone's surprise, Elmo made an appearance and you'd have though he was a rock star by the way the kids treated him.  My girls won't get within 200 feet of a jolly man in a red Santa suit but they were practically glued to the poor guy in the Elmo costume.   A swarm of toddlers/preschoolers followed him everywhere he went.  Gwen kept poking him in the butt and he kept swatting her hand away and I was starting to get worried that she had some weird monster-butt fascination but then I noticed that ALL the kids were doing this.  I guess the only part of a big red friendly monster that a 4 year old can reach is his bottom!   The guy inside that suit will need therapy after this, I'm sure.

We left the club around 3:30 and (by some miracle) managed to keep the girls awake all the way home so we could tuck them in and get a nice 1 hour nap.  After that, we pulled on our goulashes and rain jackets and went outside to do some stomping around in the rain before heading to dinner at Sweet Tomatoes.

All in all, a really great (wet!) day!


October 14, 2008

Our first school pictures!

Does pre-school count?  If so, these are our first school pictures.  We bribed the girls with chocolate if they cooperated during the photo shoot (see THIS post).  Maddy must have been thinking about chocolate the whole time because that's quite a happy smile on her face!  I'm not sure what Gwen was thinking about though (maybe melted chocolate?).  She's usually all full of smiles but you'd never know it to look at these pictures!  Even so, they couldn't be anything other than beautiful because, quite simply, she's beautiful! 

Both of my sweet girls got a delectable little Chocolate Kiss for their good work on Picture Day.  And they got a bunch of kisses from mommy too!



September 18, 2008

It's amazing what kids will do for chocolate!

Okay, I know I'm biased but isn't this child incredibly beautiful?   Her eyes and mouth and skin and nose and hair....   She simply takes my breath away!    Can you look at this picture and still draw a full breath?  Well?  Can you?

Okay, enough of the public Maddy Love Fest.  I'll move on.

Today was school picture day so I dressed the girls in color coordinated outfits and fixed their hair especially nice.   I put Gwen's hair in braids last night so it was full and fluffy and I used the curling iron on Maddy's hair to give her a pretty "style" (she LOVED that!).  Maddy even got some stick-on earrings!  Then we all went outside to take a few pictures before school.   

Pretty cute, eh?


I told the school photographer to feel free to bribe the girls with chocolate!  I promised them that I'd pick them up from school with two miniature Hershey's Chocolate bars if they followed instructions, looked at the camera and did their best to have a nice photo shoot.  Their teachers said they did great so we came home and celebrated!  Mmmmmmm!

When the school pictures arrive, I'll scan and post them.  :)

August 10, 2008

Plan B


Gwen and Maddy are learning their phone number.   We've turned it into a song that we chant like soldiers as we march from place to place:


We picked daddy's cell phone number because it's the phone we're most likely to have with us when we're away from home.   Next, we devised a plan.  Actually two plans:

  • Plan A: Teach the girls to stay close to us and never get separated.
  • Plan B:  Have some way to find them when Plan A fails.

Evolution of Plan B: 

  • In the old days, we used various types of baby harnesses or "leashes" to tether our children to us.  We got plenty of nasty glances from people who witnessed this.  Especially when Gwen went through her phase of walking on all fours and barking.
  • We printed ID cards for each child and laminated them and put them in cute little ID card holders.  This was perfect until we discovered that we usually didn't remember to bring the tags with us when we left the house.  Even when we did remember, we usually couldn't find the darn things! 
  • Our next trick was to find a ballpoint pen and write our phone number on each child's arm.  This worked well right up until the moment they found water or mud to play in.  Since our kids are water/mud magnets, this plan usually failed.  Quickly. 
  • Teaching them to squawk 7600 would be pretty easy but we've not found a reasonable way to attach a transponder to a four year old.   I know there are  good, non-aviation, variations of this available and I'm seriously looking into it.  If you know of something, let me know!
  • Our most recent version of Plan B is simply (ha!) to teach them Daddy's phone number, advise them to stay put, and tell them to ask the very first lady they see to call us on her cell phone.  Why should they seek out a woman?  Easy:  Most registered sex offenders are not women and women almost always have a cell phone (physically with them, charged and usually decorated nicely).   The kids just turned four.  When they're older, we'll refine this final part a little bit more and tell them to seek out employees of the park/store, etc. 

We've been singing the phone numbers.
We've been writing the phone numbers.
We've finally started actually dialing them. 

It's been fun and -- so far, so good -- but both girls get so excited to finally get to push the previously forbidden telephphone buttons that they don't always get the numbers in the right sequence and end up calling someone else's daddy!  But we're making progress!

*The number I listed in our little song is a random number that rhymes with ours -- of course, it's not our actual number. :)

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