Thursday, November 15, 2012

Family Harvest Days at Mt. Vernon - H Family Sight Seeing Part 6

Last time we went to Mt. Vernon, we liked it so much we became annual members!

So we went back for Family Harvest Days!

Once again we enjoyed ourselves. It's a perfect mix of history, space of the boys, outdoors, and fun.

The sign reads "Tulip Tree Circa 1766"... if only trees could talk!

Small beach area near the wharf on the Potomac River. I wanted to snag some driftwood to take home with us for a memento... but it specifically ask you don't touch the beach in any way.

The Wharf... they were doing cruises for half price that day (we didn't go though)

Roasting Apples!

Luke taste testing a roasted apple! It got a thumbs up!

Evan posing with his roasted apple, awesome backdrop!

Finished eating roasted apples while listening to some music. They were fascinated!

Fall is not complete without a hay bale maze!
 
Greg took a pic of me. Been trying to still be comfy & casual but a bit more stylish lately
 
Lots of leaves were collected!
 
They were selling simple lunch things... and I gotta say sitting next to the river on hay bales eating our little lunch was wonderful!
 
 And those were just the fun things we actually got pictures of! They also watched a blacksmith for a long time, then watched a lady work a spindle & asked her lots of questions. We got to watch some horses trample wheat to get out the grain (a system that George Washington invented). Ended our visit with a wagon ride in the meadow in front of the estate.

Cute little story: We were walking around and one point it took us pass the Tombs if we stayed on that walkway. We were telling the boys that to remember to be quiet and before we could finish...  Evan pipes up "We're going past George Washington, we have to be respect-a-bull-ity-ly".

I know they're going to be so young while we're here... but I really truly hope they remember all the historical places we've visited and why to be "respect-a-bull-ity-ly" ;)

 We had a great time! It was a really nice day for it! We will certainly will be going back for Christmas!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Halloween 2012... May the force be with you!

For this Halloween... it was a Star Wars theme!

These boys LOVE them some Star Wars... and Mommy & Daddy do too! I say all the time these boys are lucky that their mama has always liked Star Wars AND knows all about (characters, planets, background, plots, ships, weapons, wars, etc) it too!

I try to very loosely have a theme each year...

Football player & football!
The Vet with her black cat & puppy dog
 

And last year I really liked making their Halloween costumes!


Jake & Cubby from the Neverland Pirates.
 Luke was going to be a parrot, but I didn't get it done.
 He was only 6 months old so he was just in a Halloween-y outfit & hat ;)

This year with the move, making anything just wasn't going to happen! I did a lot of online searching and got the best price I could find and with being an Amazon Prime member... shipping was free!
Introducing... Anakin Skywalker, Yoda, and Darth Vader!




I know some people are against letting their child be an evil character like Darth Vader... but if that's the case they probably have never bothered to let the story sink in. Anakin really does end up being the one that brings balance to the force. After everything, it's Vader (Anakin's sith lord name) that destroys the Emperor! Jake recognizes that... so I'm okay with him wanting to be Vader! Okay, off my soapbox! I just don't like it when people get on that high horse, like I'm doing something wrong as a mother if he picks a villain costume?

Tell me Luke isn't the perfect Yoda!?!





Thing was I had these for a month and couldn't tell them. They're so gaga over Star Wars that outfits and lightsabers would be ruined before Halloween. So I brought them out to show them the day before... it was like freaking Christmas! ha!

In looking at these pics I'm really liking their Halloween buckets. I got them last year at Target. They're really buckets, so they'll hold up through the years with these boys!

It was a very chilly Halloween (and just after Sandy came through)! Greg took the boys house to house on our street and I stayed on the porch for the trick-or-treaters. It was a nice evening!

Friday, November 9, 2012

My first baby is a big boy!

I said it at 2, 3, 4, 5 and well now at SIX years old there's NO denying it! My first buddy is a big boy... but he'll ALWAYS be my first baby :)

Since I'm a wee bit behind on blogging... I'm playing catch up!

When the birthday boy woke up he came down to a table of presents stacked up, balloons, and a big ole muffin with a candle!


Opening presents - family sent lots!
 
He loved this Star Wars card with the music!
 
We have a silly little tradition. The night before one of the boys birthdays, Greg goes to the grocery store for balloons and whatever silly gift he can find to buy (this year it was a 3 way push pop thing!)! I think it'll be a fun thing to do and see evolve into the future.

Then we fulfilled Jake's birthday wish and went to good ole Chuck E. Cheese! He's been talking about it for EVER, and it's only about 3 miles from our house. He's never been... so I swear it's like we took them to Disneyland or something ;) I know when we think of CEC we all grimace... but honestly, I gotta say... it wasn't that bad. It wasn't crowded it wasn't crazy screaming kids. It was a pretty good time!


Me trying to teach them the dance game


No look! Look at me, like this! (ha!)


It was like virtual roller coaster



Then Luke's reaction to virtual roller coaster
 
A glimpse into the future??


Waiting for our pizza!


Can't dehydrate during game playing!


After naps (for the lil brothers) he went to Target to spend his giftcard (Legos!!). Later that night after dinner we had his ice cream cake! It was fantastic and enjoyed thoroughly by everyone!

 
 
 
He had a great day, and we had a great day celebrating him! In fact he had such a memorable birthday... that when assigned to draw & write about his favorite thing in Fall... he drew his birthday (it was a very festive picture!). His teacher thought he didn't understand the assignment until we reminded her of his birthday ;)

It's hard for me to put all my feelings & sentiments out there about my kids. It's as if I don't have a well enough command over the English language to even describe how they make me feel, my feeling for them and our life together. No words seem to be able to do it justice.

Jake gave me motherhood. As long as I've been a mother, Jake has been there. He's been my buddy through all the first-timer things (heck even 2nd & 3rd timer things, lol!). He's my right hand man. The only reason it doesn't kill me that he's away at Kindergarten all day is that he LOVES it so much. Even the teacher said his excitement and enjoyment of school is exceptional.

I'm so happy to celebrate all the wonderfulness, love, uniqueness and energy that is JAKE!


P.S. All the scratches on the birthday boys face were courtesy of the middle brother & a big ole stick! Boys!

P.P.S. Stay tuned more more Chuck E Cheese goodness in December. Evan has decided that's what he wants for his birthday too! Poor kid... hasn't had an original thought since he was old enough to realize he had an older brother ;)




Monday, November 5, 2012

The Newly Painted House!!

Sorry I lost my steam and completely teased about reveling the newly painted house! My last post was about the front landscaping.

We LOVE it! We're the talk of our court for sure, everyone ohs and ahs over it. At the bus stop one day it came up that I majored in Interior and Architectural Design in college and the other neighbors were all "Oh, makes total sense now at how wonderful you made the house look!". That felt good to hear, because I gotta tell ya... I've NEVER picked out exterior paint for my OWN house ;)

Okay we're is Vanna when I need her!? House went from this...



To (drum roll please - like the Griswolds if you please)...


Then we added new house numbers (couldn't even see the old ones above door)... new light fixtures should be here by the end of the week. Those itty-bitty lights are woefully under scaled and don't put off enough light!



You can see the blue door better in this picture. I really like it... also painted the french back doors in the same color! You might notice we ditched the screen door. I liked the functionality of the door... but it made opening the door really awkward for anyone to come in, they had to step off the small porch just to come back up to come in. I think it looks friendlier and more inviting this way.

First we had to pick our colors. I was inspired by a home we drove by when we were cruising around Annapolis, MD a few months ago. Plus there's a lot of beige homes around us, so I knew beige was out of the picture plus the roof shingles lean towards more bluish. So a nice gray, light trim with an accent door for pop was what we had in mind. I was pretty sure I wanted blue, but thought I should perhaps try a dark gray and a bronze too just to be sure.

Out came my handy dandy Sherwin Williams paint deck from the ole design days and we picked our sample combos. We primed then painted the samples on a corner of the house next to the fireplace (so we could also see next to brick) during different times of the day.


(we picked the second one down)

Paint Colors:

House Paint... Functional Gray SW7024
House Trim (including gutters and garage door)... Alabaster SW7008
Doors... Naval SW6244

The previous owners painted every single surface the same exact color. You just can't do that, there has to be some definition... help the house show off it's looks!

P.S. You're also seeing the new driveway in the picture too... a blog post about just the driveway was a little boring... even for me! It was neat seeing how fast they ripped it up (and how easily it came up!) and replaced!

P.P.S. I'm thinking a two pairs of shutters on the bottom front windows would be a really nice touch with shutter dogs... but I think we're done!

Remember me?

Hi there! Have you noticed a theme? Pretty sure my theme is AWOL these days.

Let's face it, things haven't been the same around here since last summer. That summer really turned everything upside down. I'm probably still processing some of it.

Then we moved cross country.

I just simply can't get back into any kind of normal and I don't like the way that feels. Not one bit.

I need to get back to something... or find something... or let go of something... maybe all three?

I used to always blog about our daily life as well as little things inbetween like crafts, home decor, improvements, kids, and what not. Then I stopped talking/reflecting as much as I used to when I started sharing more of my creative side. It would give me high of sorts, and helped me feel productive and like I was actually doing something.

Now I don't do any of that. I'm at a point where I feel really lost right now. Not really sad or depressed... just simply lost. So I run the risking of sounding negative or whiney if I talk about what's up in my life right now... but here it goes.

I'm trying to replicate how things were... but it's just not the same. Same brand of gym... but NOT the same at all. They have spin class, but nothing like I used to enjoy (although I did finally find one!).

 Can't find a moms group around here that's not very age specific or very detailed... like I must be an "ethnic gay single mom in my 40's with my first baby that was born between Jan - March of 2010".... if not then sorry Charlie!Where's the group for "Mom with kids, wants to do stuff with other moms with kids"?

Greg has been traveling a lot. It sucks. I know military families will just roll their eyes... but hey, we're a team... we always have been. I don't have family or friends to help out... so when he is gone, I'm truly ALONE. In a house that we've not even been in for FOUR months.

I miss going out with my friends for fish tacos and margaritas and laugh over completely stupid things that only your friends get.

The stores are all different here. I'm still figuring out what has what. Where to go for xyz.

There's still stuff I can't find... which sucks when getting ready, or trying make dinner, or prepare for the change of season (it just took Greg and I days to find our hats & mittens). I hate that feeling like that!

The kids are doing well I think. Luke is 17 mths and has a pet toy vacuum! Evan is 3 going on 6... except in the emotions department... he's very extreme right now, about everything. Jake is still very excited to go to school, I love seeing him bound of the bus with purpose and casualness of an old pro. Just had parent teacher conferences today and the teacher says he's doing wonderful! Can't ask for much else.

I still don't have my craft table set up... I can't find anything... it's all either packed or unpacked and shoved somewhere. So I haven't made anything but a cute little Halloween Rag Wreath!

Our laptop bit the dust... so to get on the computer by any other means than my phone (like blogging) I have to come downstairs to the basement. We use the finished half (that's in the shape of an L) as office, playroom, exercise area. Of course when I want to come down here... the boys don't... if we're all down here I get interrupted every 5 seconds. By night time, I don't want to come down here... I want to sit on the couch or in my bed (oh laptop, I curse thee!). Then our desktop died... and we decided to replace it when another desktop due to price and that the monitor and keyboard were perfectly find.

It's just not a good "gathering my thoughts" place. But I guess it's just going to HAVE to be right? Wondering if I should just actually schedule my blogging time instead of just waiting for a free moment... because uh... what's a free moment???

Anyway... we're here (Sandy didn't blow us away)... just need to figure out how to pull everything back together again! Hope you're here when I do! :)