Monday, March 30, 2015

Jacob Is Three!

Somehow Jacob knew that turning three would make him bigger. He's been telling us this for months. "When I three, I will be bigger!" Usually this was emphasized by standing on a chair or stool and stretching as tall as he could.

First thing this morning, though, we started telling him Happy Birthday and he refused to believe it was his birthday. Even at 11:25am when I informed him that he was now officially three, he firmly told me that he was still two.

It wasn't until his birthday party this evening that he finally agreed that it was his birthday and that he was indeed three. I guess it wasn't official until the actual party! Silly boy.

We went with a construction theme as currently that is the theme of his life. He is quick to point out big piles of dirt, excavators, diggers, etc. And with all the road construction in the Dallas area, we see a lot of them!

We were going to buy cupcakes at a fun little bakery called Outta the Oven but then he saw this amazing double fudge cake. He changed his mind. It was soooo good. I added the mini cones that I bought on Amazon. Now he gets to use them to play with his cars.

 Roasted veggie mac n cheese. I really like this recipe. Plus, it has lots of vegetables in it that the kids snarf right up!
 Sloppy Joe sliders. Yummy!
Neesha brought this adorable vegetable platter!
 The Quinns and their sweet girl, Liz. She is a little younger than Jacob.
 Our friend and surrogate grandma, Julie.
I love how these two boys adore each other.


 He received this great hat and construction vest. He wore them the rest of the night. And held onto the cute plush McQueen from Esther.
McQueen is right there!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Esther's 9th Birthday Party!

Since we don't do friend parties every year, and since I am cultivating my party planning talent, I let Esther choose a theme for her family (and a very few family friends) birthday party this year. She chose Madeleine Hatter from the Ever After High series of books.

I don't really like actual character birthdays so I asked her if it would be okay to do a Mad Hatter-ish type of tea party dinner/party. She was very agreeable to the idea and we started planning. She mostly came up with the menu - though I did direct it in a certain direction.

We pulled out my vintage china and tea cups - because I always love an excuse to use them. Here is Esther directing two of our guests to their seats. Megan, her best friend, and her grandmother, who has become a good friend as well.

We served a yummy tomato and mozzarella salad, complete with lettuce from our garden! It mostly survived the winter.

Mini quiche, banana and peanut butter on croissants, berry salad...

And salami, pear, and sharp Irish cheddar on rustic bread.

Esther and her sweet friend. She is sporting her Madeleine Hatter hat.

Not sure what she wished for, but it sure took her a long time to get through it!!

Scientific experiments from Megan. The Beerers (I forgot to take their picture!!!) gave her books, which she has already devoured, and a chocolate bar, which amazingly she has not yet devoured.

Grandpa and Grandma Brown sent her Josefina, a mini American Girl doll. You can tell she was pretty excited about it.

Jacob being goofy.

And again. He is sporting a cute beach towel from Grandpa and Grandma Janis.

We had a fun evening. In Esther's words it was "the best birthday ever!" We love our sweet and sassy girl who is getting smarter and sassier each day!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Esther's Latest Passion

Esther is very much into ancient Egypt right now. She is very knowledgable about mummy making, ceremonial beards, different types of crowns, cats, etc. It's fun to watch her get excited about learning new things on her own.

Last night I was showing her videos on YouTube about cruises down the Nile River. She was ready to pack up and go. It's really too bad we can't take advantage of her current excitement and actually go. But right now is just not a good time to go. I would love it, too!!

Here she is with her current reading material from the library. 

Monday, February 23, 2015

Shelob's Victims

So Nathan's penguin friends went missing mysteriously tonight. Daron just found them behind the curtains looking rather mummified in Esther's slipper socks. I don't know about you but to me they look like they were attacked by Shelob, the giant spider in Lord of the Rings. It really made me chuckle.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Laundry Room Improvements

The cabinets and shelves are in! We only had one solid shelf over each unit and a large five shelf free standing unit in there holding everything that would go in a linen closet plus extra toiletries, detergent, etc. I managed to get most all of it into the cabinets. The rest I either got rid of or found a new home elsewhere. 

Daron installed the cabinets on Saturday and the handy wire shelves tonight. That's where my frequently used things go. 

We debated putting a couple of shelves on the back wall but may end up getting another free standing unit made of sturdy metal to put the last items on plus food storage. The food storage idea just came to me today. We've been wondering where to put more for awhile. And now that we finally have a full supply of water (and with tornado season fast approaching), I feel more motivated to fill out our food storage. 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

New Tradition

We started a new tradition this year to break in my new fondue pot. Fondue for Valentine's Day dinner!! And chocolate fondue for dessert. 

The only downside was that Esther couldn't eat much. She was diagnosed with strep this morning. Thanks to Nathan who is still on antibiotics for it. Ugh. 
Even Nathan, our non cheese eater, actually got into it! 
It was a mix of Gruyere and Swiss. The pot worked very nicely and kept it warm and smooth. We served chicken sausage, apple slices, small potatoes, broccoli, and bread.
Esther and Nathan got Studio C t-shirts for their gift. 
Jacob got a Thomas shirt. That made him very happy!
Esther insisted on buying a present for her Daddy while we were picking up her prescription this morning. Max is pretty cute. 
Jacob adored the chocolate fondue! What a goofy kid. 
Chocolate was making her feel a bit better!

Valentine's Gift

Daron's very romantic Valentine's gift to me is cabinets in the laundry room. There has been so much wasted space up by the celing. Granted, I will need a tall stool to get to the top shelves but it's mostly storage stuff - extra shampoo, cleaning supplies, laundry detergent, sheets, etc. 

They never built a linen closet in this house so we've had to make do. One of the cabinets will be a mini linen closet. 

I'll post a picture when it's all done!