Friday, March 30, 2012

Luigi Cake

A few weeks ago C turned 7. The boys are currently obsessed with Wii and Super Mario Games, so it was no surprise that C requested a "Luigi" cake. Due to his food allergies, I can't just order him a beautiful bakery cake.  So I am always trying to figure out how to accommodate the theme he requests into my very basic homemade cakes. I think the best cake I've ever made was probably the Chick Hicks cake I made for C when he was 5. I set the bar too high with that one though, because now I never feel like I quite live up to that cake! When C requested a Luigi cake, he was imagining a vertical cake carved in the shape of Luigi. But since we had just returned from a great trip to Florida the night before, I was exhausted. I could only really work on the cake while baby A was sleeping, which was when I also wanted to be sleeping. I knew there was no way I'd have the mental sharpness to figure out how to make a full body Luigi cake. Especially not a vertical one! So instead, I looked online for pictures of Luigi, and when I found a satisfactory 2D image, I printed it out, enlarged it, cut out just the face, and used that as a template. After using a toothpick to trace the outline on the cake, to make sure the overall shape was right, I freehanded the rest of the face with icing. It didn't come out quite how I was envisioning, but C said "Wow, Mom! That looks just like Luigi! I thought you were going to make a whole Luigi, but the face is just perfect!"

That's good enough for me!

Hubby insists that there must always be an extra candle on the cake ("One for good luck!").

Now to figure out what to do for the Mario cake O requested for his birthday....

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

First Grade Poetry

C has been working on a poetry unit in school. On his report card a few weeks ago, his teacher commented that C "wrote a beautiful poem about snow." I had no idea what she was talking about, but it all made sense when he came home with this today.

He informed me that "'Soaking flakes on the grownd' is my poetic name for snow."

Friday, March 23, 2012

Grownup Display

When Hubby and I got engaged in 2001, my future mother-in-law insisted that we register for fancy china. "You'll want to have it for when you host Christmas!" she said. That seemed so far down the road, and I would have put off registering for that sort of thing, being fairly un-fancy by nature. But she insisted that Hubby's relatives wanted to give us nice dishes, so we finally settled on a pretty white and light green Wedgwood set. I still remember the excitement of checking our wedding registry, seeing what had been purchased, and then waiting for the boxes to arrive in the mail. We got so much mail back then! I don't think we've ever received so many packages since. We were well on our way to having fancy dishware for life.

There was just one flaw in the plan.  When we got married, I was just starting my first job, Hubby was still a student, and we lived in a tiny apartment. We had barely any counter space, only a handful of cabinets, and no room for anything. There was barely space for our regular plates, never mind fancy china. So we took a couple of place settings to use on our anniversary, and the rest of the gifts stayed boxed up in my in-laws storage room, waiting for us to have enough room for them. Since that first apartment, we've lived in 3 other apartments, but none of them had the room for our fancy dishware. So my in-laws have been storing our wonderful gifts for 10 years!

This house finally has a dining room, and space for our fancy dishes. But there was still a problem...over the years, we had never acquired any dining room furniture! Luckily, my in-laws decided they wanted to get us a dining room set as a housewarming present. It took several outings before we finally settled on a set, but it was finally delivered last week. My father-in-law delivered all of our wedding boxes several months ago, and they have been sitting in our garage since then. So it felt great to finally open up all the boxes and display all of the china that family and friends so lovingly gave us 10 years ago! It was also a fun trip down memory lane, as I found many handwritten cards tucked in with the gifts. It feels great to finally have all our things in our home! And I'm sure my in-laws are happy to have their storage space back. I really like how the room is coming together! My mother-in-law was right, now I am grateful to have all these lovely pieces.

Looking at the finished product, I remarked to Hubby, "Now that we have a china cabinet, I really feel like we are grownups!" And he agreed.

Not sure why the three kids didn't get the same point across!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Spring has Sprung!

We've really been enjoying the unseasonably warm weather so far this year. This week it's been feeling more like summer than the early days of spring. Amazingly enough, despite my total lack of gardening know-how, we are seeing some flowers in the front yard. It was thrilling to see the very first bloom--our first gardening success in our new home! I immediately took this picture and sent it to my mom! She always told me that I would get excited about gardening when it was for my own yard, and I guess she was right.

Our very first crocus!

It's been even more fun to see more crocuses popping up every where. The boys love counting up the number of flowers we have so far--I think we're up to 52 crocuses!--and they can't wait to see if we'll have similar success with the tulips and daffodils we planted in the fall.

We've also noticed that there are some new leaves popping up in places where we didn't plant anything. It will be interesting to see what those turn out to be. Hopefully a beautiful parting gift from the previous owners of this house.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

No longer "brand new!"

Baby A turned one. Two months ago.

I know. I can't believe it either. My sidebar is so out of date.

I also can't believe I didn't blog about it. Maybe I am in denial. In a lot of ways, he still feels brand new to me. After all, he's still nursing, and still waking up at night wanting to hang out with me.

But in other ways, he's clearly been around a while. He crawls away the moment my attention is diverted for a second, especially straight up the stairs. He's obsessed with his "Dada". When Hubby gets home from work, I might as well disappear. A close second to "Dada" is Backyardigans.

Yes, Baby A has a favorite show. That's what happens when you're the 3rd child. Your mom is much more likely to let you watch TV. After all, TV means she can sit down with a cup of coffee or change a load of laundry. I sort of feel guilty about that. But I also sort of don't.

Hopefully he's not too worse for wear. 

Baby A would rather pose with the Backyardigans than with me!

Friday, March 16, 2012

It's been too long...

OK. Clearly I stink at blogging. I keep meaning to sit down and write, but never seem to get around to it. I really wish I had documented more of the last year. It's been amazing and exhausting, funny and frustrating to have 3 boys, but life just never seems to sit still enough for me to really reflect on it. Yesterday, when C brought up April Fools Day, I realized that I still remember vividly the funny little things I blogged about in the past, like when he played a confusing April Fools joke on me when he was 5.  He's 7 now... 

There are so many other things I've forgotten. So many things about which I thought "I've got to write that down!" but then didn't. Now I have no idea what those things were. I'm so glad I documented our April Fools exchange because it still makes me chuckle. And I'm sure I would have forgotten it otherwise.

How is it possible that I have a 7 year old anyway? Has that much time really passed since C came into my life? When I was 7, I met one of my friends for life. She was the new girl in my girl scout troop, and the first time she came over to my house to play, we couldn't figure out what to do. We ended up tossing a stuffed bunny back and forth for most of the time. I'm not sure why she wanted to come over again after that less than stellar entertainment, but that was only the first of many playdates, sleepovers, and vacations together. We called ourselves "The JJs" since we both shared the same initial and would scribble stuff like "JJs forever" in notes to each other. I was sure then that we would be friends forever, and 25+ years later, it looks like we're off to a good start. She has 3 girls now. I like the symmetry in that. I think "Auntie J" was the only one of my friends rooting for Baby A to be a boy, so she must like it too! Who knew that day when I was 7 would be the start of something so meaningful?

I wonder if C will be lucky enough to make a friend like that this year. Big stuff is happening right around me every day. I'm just not sure which of the everyday occurrences will end up being the big stuff. So here's hoping I can make more time to sit down to write and reflect on our regular old life, and get a snapshot of what really matters.