Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

We hope you had a wonderful holiday with family and friends. We did! Love and Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Big Chill

This past Saturday Bryan and I participated in a historic event! We were spectators at the Big Chill, an outdoor hockey game between Michigan and Michigan State. What made it historic was the venue and attendance: the hockey game was at the Big House (Michigan's football stadium) and the crowd was 113,411, making it the largest crowd ever to watch a hockey game anywhere in the world. The Guinness Book of World Records was there to present a certificate and everything. Pretty cool...literally! It was COOOOOLD. We wore lots of layers and were well-prepared (well, except for my toes; I should've worn multiple pairs of socks!), but brrrr! Even though we're not big hockey fans, it was a really fun experience. Here are some pictures!

On the way to the game
Here we are!
Good seats!
Players take the ice
the record-setting crowd
Blowout win for Michigan!
An ice sculpture at the stadium of the Big Chill logo

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Six years old!

We have been busy bees around here celebrating Amelia's 6th birthday! Her birthday was Monday but we had birthday activities on three consecutive days (lucky girl). Here's what we did.

Sunday: Party with Amelia's friends at Jungle Java (an indoor playplace). She had 6 friends and their siblings there, plus the four of us, and all the kids' parents, which made for a full room! The kids had a great time playing, which meant I got to visit with the parents. Fun! For her cake, Amelia requested chocolate with strawberry frosting, which turned out to be very tasty. I found a recipe for strawberry buttercream on Martha Stewart's site which was divine! Amelia is really in to dogs and puppies these days, so that was the theme of her cake. We had Fletcher (our beagle) on top, Rosie (her build-a-bear dog, which looks like a bear) in the middle, and Beautiful (one of her Webkinz) on the bottom. I had a battle with the fondant and it ended up looking pretty horrendous, so I decided to put pawprints all over the cake to hide the mistakes. Thankfully, it worked! Here are a few pictures from the party.
We didn't open presents at the party (too much craziness!), so we packed them up and got in the car. By the time the party was over, it was 5:30, and our church Life Group had started at 5. Bryan said, "well I guess we're not going to Life Group, right? " I said, "I'd kind of like to go..." and Bryan replied, "Me too." Then Amelia piped up from the back seat: "I want to go to Life Group. I want to see my friends!" Bryan and I were both shocked and so happy that she would leave a big box full of un-opened presents in favor of spending time with her church friends! YAY!! Of course then Andrew (the little parrot) said "I go to small groot!!!" :-) After Life Group we went home, opened presents quickly and went to bed. Bryan had a conference to attend the next day, so he left for the airport late Sunday night.

Monday: Amelia's birthday! She got ready for school and was allowed to play with one toy when she was done, before we had to leave for the bus. She picked a Littlest Pet Shop toy, and walked around with it all morning saying things like "Mom. This is SO adorable. I didn't even see it had binoculars (it's a safari set)." and "Mom. This is SO adorable. I almost cried when I saw it, I was so happy. Like, I had tears in my eyes." Dramatic much, are we??? :-)

Anyway, Amelia went to school and I took Andrew to school, where he got to stay all day (he did really well)! Then I got a treat ready to take to school for Amelia's class: Cake balls (aka cake bites or cake truffles). If you've not heard of them, you MUST try them. Go to this link (Bakerella) and check out the cake bites and cake pops. They are delicious and so cute! Anyway, I worked on those with the help of a friend whose daughter is in Amelia's class and shares her birthday. The cake bites turned out really good and the kids loved them! After the school snack I took Amelia to the doctor for her yearly checkup (she's healthy and doing great). Then we picked up the things for her birthday dinner (she requested fish sticks, rice and peas, ha!) and picked up Andrew from school. It was a good birthday! Here is Amelia enjoying her birthday dinner and the present we gave her (a big box of Legos).
Tuesday: Pretty much a normal day! We had our last leg of birthday celebrating that night (since Bryan was out of town Monday and wouldn't be back until Tues. afternoon). We did our traditional birthday dinner at Red Robin with our close friends...16 of us in all! We had a great time eating, visiting, and eating more cake bites that I brought. They were a big hit again! In fact, we gave some to our waiters and they were spell-bound! So much so that we gave some to other staff at the restaurant and they were all coming over asking about them. It was hilarious to see what an effect those things had! We all got a good laugh over that. Here are some pictures from dinner.
So, as you can see, we've had a full last few days. Now, on to Thanksgiving! Have a happy week!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

These shoes.

I love these shoes. Let me tell you how I came to own is a great tale of shopping triumph!
I was in Houston with Abby last month, and while we were killing time waiting to go to an event, we stopped in to Kohl's. I was wearing some black wedge sandals that I'd had for 5+ years and it was high time for them to be retired (they were pretty nasty)! I had $10 in Kohl's cash to spend (it's a great thing...if you don't know about it, check out!), so I thought it'd be worth seeing if there were any cute, black wedge sandals I could get to replace the nasty ones...after all, they'd be at least $10 cheaper!

I saw these adorable ones, from Vera Wang's "Simply Vera" line (only at Kohl's) on a mannequin and thought I'd look for them in the shoe department so I could try them on. Well, I looked and looked, but couldn't find the sandals anywhere in the shoe department. Disappointed, I went back to the mannequin to admire the sandals again. Abby said, "why don't you see if those happen to be your size?" So I figured, why not? And....indeed, they were my size. Amazing! The price tag said $69.50, which is way more than I'd pay for these, but since everything is always on sale at Kohl's, and since I had my $10 off, I figured I'd take them up to the register and just see what the real price was. Well, I put the shoes up on the counter, told the sales lady that there wasn't a box because the only pair I could find was on display, and she rang them


Yes, you read that correctly, folks. $7. That's a 90% discount! Needless to say, I was speechless. My jaw dropped! I never find deals THAT great! The sales lady was cracking up at me; she said "I've never seen a reaction like that in the whole time I've worked here...and it was worth the wait!" I could not believe my luck, so I promptly paid in cash (kept the Kohl's cash for later!), and got out of there before there was a chance for it to all be a big, mean joke. YAY for bargains!
And yay for these shoes. :-)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Our trip to Wiard's

Wiard's is an orchard and store about two miles from our house. Every weekend in October they have a giant "country fair" with lots of rides, games, and activities. We usually try to go to the fair once every fall; it's such a fun fall activity! We went to Wiard's last weekend and had a great time. We picked apples, roamed the pumpkin patch, rode "tractors," raced rubber ducks, and played on giant, inflatable things. :-) A good time was had by all, as you will see from the pictures!
Happy fall, everyone!!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

What we've been up to.

We have been busy, busy since I posted last! Here's what we've been up to:

Making a quilt with Ms. Paula
Visiting our hometown
Finally riding the school bus
Going apple picking with school
Having fun with Nana
Getting to see the fire truck
The fire truck is SO cool.

That's all for now!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

First Day of School

Yesterday was Andrew and Amelia's first day of school! Andrew started at Teddy Bear Daycare in the toddler class. He'll normally be going on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings, but since we had to go with Amelia on her first day, Andrew got to start on Tuesday. He was SO excited to go, and his teachers said he did really well!

For Amelia's first day, we went with her to her school (Lincoln Multi-Age) for a parent-student Kindergarten orientation. We were there for just a couple hours, but they were action-packed! When we arrived at Ms. Hunter's classroom, we picked up a list of tasks we had to complete, including drawing yourself, printing your name, picking out a cubby, picking out a locker, reading a book and getting your picture taken by the teacher. The class was very crowded with the 24 kids and about half that many parents, but it was still fun. I think Amelia was a bit overwhelmed, but she was still excited.

This morning Andrew and I walked Amelia to her bus stop, where she got on the bus to ride to Kindergarten for her first (official) full day. As soon as the bus pulled up, I got all choked up and teary! I really didn't expect to be that emotional since she's been doing "school" for a few years now, but it just hit me! What a big girl. She will do so well and I can't wait to hear all about her first day when we get her from the bus this afternoon.

Time flies!!!!! Andrew goes from 8:30-12:30 and then takes a nap for most of the afternoon when he gets home, so I pretty much have all day MWF to do anything...or nothing. It feels very strange, but nice!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Amelia's exciting week

Amelia had a pretty big week last week! She participated in "Safety Town," a week-long program (9-3 every day!) for entering kindergarteners to learn all about safety. There were visits from the police and fire department, EMTs with an ambulance, Louie the lightning bug (DTE Energy), a railroad safety group, the Red Cross, and others. Amelia had a great time and learned a lot! Here are a couple pictures from graduation.

pretty excited about something!
demonstrating what to do if an animal you don't know starts bothering you (stand like a tree and say "help!")
Getting her Safety Town diploma from her teacher

Yesterday Amelia also finished her first session of swimming lessons at the county rec center. She LOVED being in the pool and did a great job! The pictures were taken from an observation deck behind a window, so please excuse the poor quality!
Kicking feet (she's the third one counter-clockwise from top)
Getting ready to jump in to the deep end
Showing the skills certificate!

Last but not least, our friends the Spiveys had their first baby on Tuesday, and Amelia couldn't wait to meet baby Noah! She was so excited to get to visit him and hold him. Here they are:
So sweet!
Amelia=excited about the baby...Andrew=excited about the apple juice. :-)

This week, Nana is coming on Tuesday (a week earlier than expected, yay!) so we're in for much more fun. It's hard to believe, but in just over three weeks Amelia and Andrew will both be in school! Where has the summer gone???