Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Great Outdoors

We have had some beautiful weather since the weekend so Charlie and I have been trying to make the most of the sunshine. Yesterday we had a play date at the beach with friends- so much fun watching they boys together splashing in the water and digging in the sand.

Today we went to a friend's pool in the morning and then before dinner the bean and I played in our yard. The thermometer on my car said 99 and it felt like it- you can tell by Charlie's cheeks!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Daddy is my hero

Joe took a day off from the office to work in our yard.
As soon as Charlie saw Joe wearing this 'hat' as he called it he wanted to wear it all day and be like Daddy.
The most adorable part- everytime Charlie saw his Joe walk by he clapped his hands like he was a rockstar.
I think Joe felt like one too :o)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

A beautiful Mother's Day

Charlie and I have had a rough several weeks with a new stage he is in (separation anxiety, defiance and fear seem to be the major overtones of this phase) so it was such a blessing to have a lovely day with my boys and family today.

I have been feeling very run down the last four days or so because of all the stress and either a sinus infection or allergies have been getting the best of me.

Joe and Charlie pampered me with breakfast in bed, scrambled eggs bacon and toast with apple juice. It was so special and we all shared the yummy feast in our bedroom. After cards and Joe telling me I could choose from a spa treatment or gym membership as my gift (thank you sweetheart for being so generous) I gave both boys haircuts. Charlie was not a fan of his makeover this time around and no amount of singing or Milano cookies could coax him into believing otherwise. So he really got a touch up :o)

We made it to the late church service. During the sermon I've been somewhat successful lately in giving Charlie a lollipop to keep him quiet. Not something I normally allow but it's a super special treat just so we don't disturb others until I can reason with my toddler a bit better- please don't judge! Well Charlie apparently adores cherry lollipops more than any other flavor because he was lip-smacking so loud that several people were cracking up laughing from his antics. So much for trying to be inconspicuous!

After church Joe and the bean hung out for an hour while I packed bags and got directions to the restaurant we were going to with my family. Lunch/dinner was absolutely delish, waaaay too much food as is always the case with my family. I had this delicious lobster and corn ravioli in a truffle cream sauce. And that was after calamari, antipasto, mini meatballs, and a shrimp veggie appetizer. Then they rolled out was seemed like seven or more desserts (peanut butter cake with some crunchy divine brittle, chocolate gooey cakes, mini ice cream cones, and sinful donuts with some sort of vanilla bean custard sauce to dip in.

The donuts were made famous at the Michael Jackson funeral and Joe tried convincing everyone at the table about this, but everyone laughed it off because Joe is a jokester. When the waitress confirmed that little trivia my whole family cracked up.

My niece Alexa made this hilarious comment when all the desserts were coming out. She said "they're trying to make us all fat!"

After that enormous lunch Joe and I said goodbye to my family and went over to see Joe's parents for a few hours. And now I'm home tired but happy and full (still hours later) and listening to my drying running as Charlie sleeps upstairs.

Here's a few shots from our day:

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

2nd Birthday Party

Last weekend we had Charlie's 2nd Birthday party. It was the most beautiful, fun day.
My mom, sisters and their families, Uncle Frank and Billy and Joe's sister and her fiance were all in attendance. We had 80 degree sunny weather (this seems to be starting a pattern since Carlie's first birthday party was exactly the same weather-wise).

I am so blessed that I have an understanding husband that realized that his wife literally wilts in the heat and determined that central air would be a good thing to have for our family. The house was cool and comfy all day despite my oven working overtime.

Joe took Charlie in the morning to his soccer class and then picked up the cake and balloons I had ordered earlier. That gave me a few final hours of prep time which was so helpful. Our menu for the day was BBQ themed:
Appetizers (many from trader joes)
Coconut shrimp with a spicy apricot dipping sauce
Egg rolls with sweet & sour sauce
Feta and carmelized onion pastry bites
Blue crab dip and crackers
Artichoke dip
Chips & Dip

Main Course (Joe was a great grill master!)
Garlic herb butter stuffed hamburgers
Pulled pork and slaw sandwiches
Hot dogs
Chicken skewers with sweet Jack Daniel's grill glaze
Potato Salad
Pasta Salad
Corn on the cob (that no one ended up eating lol)
Onion rings

Birthday cake (from NY Bakery chocolate and decadent)
Oreo truffles
Chocolate chip cookies
and my Mom made two types of biscotti!

Next year I will edit my menu down because it was entirely too much food but everyone really seemed to enjoy everything. Oh and those hamburgers took forever to make, as in hours! Don't think I will be undertaking that again, unless on a small scale.

I had originally planned an activity for the kids to go with the construction/dirt theme (they were going to make seed bombs with dirt, fertilizer and flower seeds) but I'm glad I took a more laid back approach. The kids played in the bounce house we borrowed from a friend and played a bunch of baseball games in the front yard too.

I tried to be super organized about the food and it paid off because I was able to enjoy the party and see Charlie enjoy playing with his cousins. My sweet niece Ariana also played photographer for the day and helped snap some awesome shots.

Charlie was showered with amazing gifts from his family and he is loving every single one of them more than a week later. My family was so generous it was overwhelming :o)

We worked on thank you cards this week and Charlie drew pictures in each of the cards. It was so sweet watching him do it. He scribbled on his Mimas card and the scribble actually came out looking like a boat and he said "a boat!" and was amazed that he had done it. Then he drew an "A." My little boy is really growing fast.

Here's a few shots from our special day:

Before and After -Entryway Paint Update

Joe and I had been painting the bathrooms and bedroom off and on for weeks now and with all the other business in our life we just could not complete the projects. We decided to hire a painter to finish because we just want to be done with this.

I will post pictures of Charlie's bathroom when the toilet is put back in place, but I wanted to show a few shots of the entry. The hall and stairs desperately needed a new paint job despite us only living in the house for 10 months. I don't know what I was thinking when I chose white but it's a lesson learned.

We decided to give Farrow and Ball paint a try, because #1: we have heard many ravs about the colors, coverage and finish of the paint and #2 there is only 130 colors to choose from and I am absolutely awful when it comes to picking out paint colors. I get overloaded on the tiniest nuances/color variations/undertones etc. We opted for a more substantial color, Stony Ground, since we tend to always go too light. It was a bit of a shock to me when I first saw it going on the wall but it is a lovely color and eventually, when the kitchen is redone we will have a nice tall wainscot put up and painted in a creamy white, so it won't be floor to ceiling brown.

Having now tried the paint I can say the finish is no better than Benjamin Moore/Calfornia. We opted for the Modern emulsion which is a slightly matte finish. Perhaps the dead flat finish is much more incredible but we can't explore that world until all the little ones are well grown in our family. I will say there was zero odor, which was lovely considering I hosted a book club last night, you would have never known that a painter was working all day. What do you think of the color?


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