Wednesday, February 25, 2009

why doug is not in advertising

Where do you want to eat?

I don't know, just pick one.

Well, there's Panda Express...

Seriously? You might as well pick McDonalds!

Panda Express is like the candy of Chinese food.

Um, because it's so junky?

Ah, it's junky goodness! That could be their new slogan! Junky Goodness!


february is the new january

I have always disliked January. After the excitement of the holidays, it is always such a letdown. And it is always cold. And dreary. And too hard to get back into a routine. This past January was certainly no exception, but it was so much fun compared to how this February has been. We have been so busy with school and soccer and drama classes. The weather has been cold, which wouldn't be so bad if we weren't having to spend so much time outside. Not to mention the fact that we had "Fake Spring" during the first week of the month with beautiful blue and sunny skies and 70 degree temperatures. But now it's cold. All the time. And I've had a cold for what has seemed like weeks. February is kicking my butt.

And so is this little butt...

If you were to come over to our house on any given day, this is what you would see. Because, really, diapers? She can't be bothered with them. And she has figured out how to take off almost every item of clothing she owns (yes, even onesies!). The only things she can't take off by herself are some long-sleeve/long pants thermal onesie pjs, and she only has 2 of those. It took me about a week of walking into her room after her nap to find her diaper and pants next to her crib and her sheets soaked before I figured out that she should probably be wearing them at naptime too, so you can imagine how much laundry I'm doing these days! We've started tinkering around with potty training, but it's really hard to be consistent with our schedule. I really need just one full day of not having anything to do or any place to go and after looking at my calendar, I think I should be ready sometime in the summer of 2026. As long as she's not busy doing something getting ready for college!!

Of course, I kid. Diapers aren't cheap and it will be nice to not have to buy them anymore. But, while I'll be really glad to have her out of diapers, I will also be very sad that my baby is too big for diapers. Because I know, from personal experience, that being too big for diapers leads to being too big for other things. My baby is growing up way too fast. While each new stage is exciting, she's leaving behind a piece of babyhood that I'll never get to experience again. As relieved as my exhausted self was when Ainsley started sleeping through the night, there was a part of me that knew I was going to miss the quiet nights spent snuggling up with her in the big, comfy chair, feeding her a bottle and smelling the top of her sweet head.

On the flip side (and to briskly change the subject before I start crying!), Ainsley is doing some pretty cool things. Her vocabulary has exploded recently and I can't even begin to count how many words she is saying. She has even started to string a few words together. "Baby. Stairs. Down." means she wants to take her baby downstairs with her now. (But don't try to hold her hand on the way down...she's much too big for that, you know!) And when I ask if she would like some carrots for dinner and she shakes her head and says, "MO!", what she really means is "Lady, there is no freakin' way I'm going to eat carrots and if you put them on my plate, I will scream." You get the idea.

She loves being outside and can even go up the ladder and down the slide at the community playset all by herself. She loves to sit at the table and draw pictures with pens and pencils while Jack does his homework. And she can often be found doling out hugs and kisses to her siblings, and even us parents, without even being asked to do so. She'll sit in my lap and look at books for hours and she loves it when Jack is home so she has someone to play cars and play ball with. Sometimes she gets frustrated because she's just not big enough to do all the things I know she wants to do. And sometimes her need for independence wears us both out. But it's awfully fun and I wouldn't have her any other way.

So, this started out as a post about how I'm not too fond of February and evolved into a nostalgic, weepy bit about my baby growing up. See? February is so kicking my butt that I can't even maintain a cohesive train of thought! I'm so glad this month is almost over. Then it will be March and March in the South brings sunshine and warmth and happiness. And you'll be able to find us at the playground. Ainsley will be the one going up the ladder and down the slide, displaying no fear or trepidation whatsoever. And I'll be the one standing at the bottom of the ladder, trying to smell the top of her sweet, little head each time she climbs up.

Monday, February 16, 2009

sweet treats

I made these cookies on Friday to celebrate "Forced Affection" Day (aka Valentine's Day - I'm sorry...Valentine's Day bugs me). It used to be that I would only make butter cookies at Christmas. They are kind of a lot of work, but believe it or not, they are the only cookie I make that everyone in the house will eat. Then a couple of years ago, I played around with making cookie bouquets and needed an icing that would hold up better than a buttercream. I try to make these a couple of times a year: hearts, chicks and bunnies for Easter, leaves in the fall, and sometimes just plain circles for whatever.

Here's the recipe:

Butter Cookies

1 cup butter (softened)
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
3 tsp. vanilla
3 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and mix until combined. In a separate bowl, sift flour and baking powder together and add to butter mixture. Mix until just incorporated. Separate into two portions; wrap in wax paper and chill for at least an hour.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface, rotating frequently so the dough doesn't stick, to desired thickness (1/4 to 1/2 inch). Cut out shapes with cookie cutters and transfer to baking sheet. Bake for approx. 5 to 7 minutes until a very light golden brown. Allow cookies to cool completely before decorating.


2 cups powdered sugar
3 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
food coloring (Liquid is fine, but I prefer to use the Wilton gel colors...the colors are very vivid and a little goes a long way!)

Combine first three ingredients until well combined into a thick glaze. Add coloring and mix completely (or not, for a swirly effect...)

There isn't really any way to mess this can put a lot on so it drips over the edges of the cookies, or you can leave a border around the edge...just have fun!

Friday, February 13, 2009

prince and princess dance

Doug and Emily are, right this minute, dancing the night away at Emily's school's Prince and Princess Dance. Which is not a father/daughter dance. It's just a dance where the young Princes and Princesses have to be accompanied by an adult. And when I asked Emily who she wanted to take her to the dance, she said, "Uh, Dad!" Like it was the most ridiculous question ever. Sigh.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

my favorite photos from kate & john's wedding

Kate's very talented friend, Erica, took these amazing photos. She captured the moments so beautifully that I can almost imagine what it would have been like to be there.
Thanks so much, Erica!!

a view from both sides

From the front:

And from the back:

No matter how hard she tries, she can't seem to figure out how to get her pants up over her butt. I know, right? What butt?? But however tiny it may be, she just hasn't figured out how to pull her pants up over it. And I cannot be expected to do things like wash dishes, do laundry or update this website while Ainsley is spending hours trying to learn how to pull up her pants. I'm sorry, folks. It's just too entertaining.

Monday, February 9, 2009

guess who scored 3 goals in last weekend's soccer tournament?

It was awesome! She got the first three goals of the game...and half of the team's points for that game! Great start to the season!