Monday, January 31, 2011

Valentine Ideas

I love Valentine's Day with kids. I am really excited about it this year because Presley, my little craft queen is in school. She will have the chance to pass cards out to all her class mates. Noah for some reason never wants to do it! We bought cute Star Wars Valentines one year and he refused to pass them out! When he was 3 and we lived in Maryland, I was able to coax him into the v-day spirit, but not now...
Here are a few things we did in Maryland. we had a fun party with all the little kids.

Aren't home made Valentines the bomb? I'm trying to come up with a cute idea for Presley's this year. (I'm totally assuming Noah won't be into it again). Here are some great ideas from a post last year in the katie did journal that I always have in the back of my mind because I loved it so.
Finger puppets!
The previous year was my fave. She first made these cute headbands for her girls.

Then the valentines are felt bracelets:

From mer mag this year (she is on the ball!) Merrilee did these awesome color cards with her son. They kind of remind me of Eric Carle:
So, with that, I've got some more thinking to do. Incorporating candy most likely will be a must for Presley. I'll let you know what we come up with.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

hey sis, it's sis

 Wanna know a secret? I never call my twin sister by her name, Denise. Never have, never will. It feels weird to even try to say it. She is "Sis". Actually I am "Sis" too. We both call each other sis. All my friends, family, and our husbands can verify. It's kind of embarrassing at times and kind of funny.

As you probably have guessed we are pretty close. We talk almost every day excluding the weekends. We ichat and let our kids visit and show each other our current projects. The best thing, is we mom together. All moms need a little moral support don't ya think? Both of us have three kids (it's a twin thing! ha!). We swap tips on snacks, discipline, and fun activities.We also come up with our own mom philosophies. The number one thing we both agree on in our 6-7 years of parenting is Never Judge Other Parents! (Of course unless it is a crazy mom that made headlines on how she reacted when her kids mouthed off--scary!) Seriously. I believe it's just a matter of time till your kid does the same thing as another unruly kid and you have no idea how to handle the situation--wait, maybe you guys out there actually do have it all figured out?? :) I admit I've had the thought, "my child will never do such and such." Then lo and behold he or she does it! I think part of my "be nicer" campaign is to cut other moms some slack. We are all learning and we're all in this together. Might as well uplift instead of tear down. Thank goodness I have "Sis" (and she has "Sis") to discuss all our bumbling mommy moments!
Check out Sis' project for Valentine's day on her table to the left!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Yet Another Snow Day!

Seriously? I'm running out of ways to keep three snowed in kiddos entertained! Noah left us to head over to a buddy's house. We thought the buzz of snow was going to be an exaggeration, Then we woke up to this! Once again.
It's really pretty.

 Charlie has been really into baths. He is getting sick of wearing clothes. All those layers drive him nuts! He strips down when we're home. The next step usually is to beg for a bath with army guys and dinosaurs.
He stays in there till he's pruny.

You'll never guess how Presley's been keeping busy. So, I'm the crazy lady who thought loose glitter was a good idea! UGH! Glitter glue only from now on. Charlie got a hold of it and was sprinkling it like a salt shaker all over the house.
Then of course what is a cold, snowy day without snuggling up with a nice popsicle! That's how we roll around here folks.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Big News

I am telling you, since last February, it has felt like our household has put off lots of r & r time to work together and get things going for Josh's work to get published. We took a big trip to Disney World then buckled down and took a break from any family trip or outing for that matter so that Josh could work towards something huge, graduation this May. Josh had to meet with a committee of professors and present his work before he got the green light for graduation. His meeting was Thursday and the answer was YES! Graduation in May is going to happen! Can you believe it? I get choked up every time Josh and I talk about it. In a couple of weeks Josh's work will be sent in to hopefully get published in a science magazine. He will also be in the process of applying for jobs and possible post docs. His current lab has told him he can stay there as a post doc for as long as he needs. That gives us a little cushion of security. Before I start dreaming of dishwashers and garbage disposals in my future, I am just going to enjoy envisioning this guy in a cap and gown. Cannot wait!

Did I tell you the other big news? Noah lost a third tooth! Here is a blurry, but cute pic of him.
 The crazy thing was that Pres was helping him pull it out. So funny that he trusted her. I actually would too. She has such a gentleness about her. Maybe we have a future, doctor, nurse, or dentist on our hands?

I have to post also about my fabulous birthday. Last weekend my friend, Lindsey arranged a big celebration at a local Mexican restaurant in my honor. It was such a fun girl's night. There is Lindsey to my left.

I blew a candle out of a virgin strawberry dacquiri

These are my mom friends from Noah and Pres' school. We endure hours of cool temps at the park together after school. Love these guys!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

heart-shaped box

Does a certain song of the 90's come to mind when you hear that? I remember thinking that Kurt Cobain must've been so fascinated with the idea of birth and having a child. His lyrics might have even sparked some of my curiosity on the topic. Never would I have imagined parenthood to be what it is for me though.
I have to talk about little Presley Kathryn. She is reminding me of the complexities of a mother daughter relationship. I forget from time to time since my own mom has been gone for over ten years now. Presley is a noticer (total Joy School word/lingo!) She knows what kind of earrings her teacher at church wears or what someone's dad's watch looked like. She also notices when I tell her that I love her. Since she was out of school a lot lately with Christmas and snow days, she has noticed me saying I love you to Charlie. She told me something that made my heart sink. She said, you are like a babysitter or a teacher because you don't say I love you a lot to me. Only at bedtime. Oh my goodness! She was right, though. It just happens that you say it more to the person who is glued to you the most. That certainly doesn't mean that I don't love each of my sweeties equally (of course). My resolve is to say it often to everyone. Also to just be a little kinder. Who knows what else PK is noticing. I have a feeling it will make the Plant world a happier place.

Here she is. My little spittin' image. Love can't even describe how much she and her bro's mean to me. 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A late Christmas gift and Snow Day!

I have to share the most exciting news around here these days. Charlie has been diaper free all of 2011! It is official. He is still training, but I feel safe enough to leave the house with him and no diapers! I consider it Charlie's late Christmas gift to me. It hasn't been easy, but he seemed ready and made it easier than I thought. No diapers does not mean I haven't been dealing with lots of messes, but Charlie tells me he needs to use the bathroom and his only messes now are when he gets off the toilet a little too soon! TMI? Sorry. It's fun to see his little buns now. I think Charlie is just mystified by the whole thing. He does all these funny squat moves to show the new freedom of movement he has without a diaper!

Yesterday afternoon before the big storm hit, we already knew school was cancelled for today. The snow didn't even come till we were all asleep. We stayed up late and watched movies, then woke up to this:
It was so pretty. All the snow on those branches caused some power lines to break. We were out of power twice. Once for three hours. I'm so grateful for POWER! and HEAT!

To keep busy, the kids built a big structure complete with army guys and train tracks. Pres wore her ballet attire for the occasion.
When the power was out, the kids played outside for over an hour. So nice. Charlie kept his tongue out almost the whole time!
We kept a previously scheduled play date and had one of Noah's friends, Isaac over. It is his comrade in all things football.
We got a little nervous having the power out, so Josh brought home a few cords of fire wood and came home a bit early to dig our car out before it iced over. Just as it was getting totally dark and I was scrambling to find more candles, the power came on! Whew! I was so grateful. It's hard to keep candles burning when you have wrestling, pillow fighting boys in your house! We still used the fire wood...
 All Josh's idea. He comes up with the craziest most fun ideas.
 Charlie was all over those s'mores.
 Gotta love the grainy pics. I'm telling ya, it is DARK here. My ISO is all the way to 2500.
 Five mallows at a time, huh?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Right this second... kids are doing something cute. I had to post a pic. We got a bunch of art supplies today and I had some homemade play doh on hand (I made a big vat for toddler time today). I LOVE when my kids are doing art projects. It's the best thing to cheer up Pres for sure. We were having the hardest time getting in touch with any of her friends for a play date and Noah's been having play dates left and right.  PK and I made a trip to the craft store and I could see the sparkle coming back into those eyes. Pipe cleaner jewelry, painted box with glitter!, sequins!, feathers! What more could a girl ask for?
We are now in those winter months of Boston where it gets dark at 4 pm folks! I'm not a fan of using the flash in my house, but it becomes so necessary with how dark it is here. I will have to grin and bare it and take lots of family photos anyways, because these guys need documentation! 

So, speaking of cute:
Josh took this photo yesterday after church. Sure these guys fight like cats and dogs, but they have soooo much fun together.  Right now the big thing is to gather all the stuffed animals and have "staff meetings" (thanks Toy Story) or story time or put them to bed. It is the great revival of the stuffed animal in the Plant house. I swear those things were this close to being donated, then all of a sudden they're all the rage around here. also because of Toy Story 3, Noah has started saying "Darn it, Barbie!" all the time when he messes up on something. It's pretty funny. Toy Story 2 has taught him to say "Sweet mother of Abraham Lincoln!" when he sees something exciting. Ah, the joys of Pixar...

Friday, January 7, 2011

Plants in 2011

We rang in the New Year with Josh's youth group from church. Josh isn't the Young Men's Pres anymore, but we still kinda like hanging out with those guys. :) We rented Inception and ate bbq, nachos, and ice cream (got in all the junk food before the New Year). Then Noah, Josh and the boys played Madden on the Wii while Charlie slept and Pres and I played Battleship till the ball dropped.

So Josh just barely discovered he had access to a parking spot downtown for nights and weekends. If only we knew that three years ago!! I would have spent so much less time in the car waiting for Josh to run to work for ten minutes. We are comical. :) On New Years Day we used the primo parking spot and played downtown. It was a random warm day and we didn't need coats. First we went to breakfast and left, walking five blocks from the restaurant before realizing we forgot to pay! Josh ran back and paid. They didn't even realize we had gone. We went to Boston Common, Downtown Crossing where I got this:
with my Macy's gift card, then to the movies.

My new haircut! I'm still experimenting with how I like it styled.
 Charlie napped while the older kiddos played at the slushy park at Boston Common. The place was packed. Behind Josh is the ice skating rink with the line going for miles!

 Happy 2011! This year is going to bring us lots of changes. We will keep you posted!