Monday, January 28, 2013

Alex's big girl room

you guys probably think the title of this post is a big fat lie. because i'm pretty sure i've promised to post about this 100 times in the past 2 years.

i can explain. no really, i can. you see, alex's room is orange. i'm pretty sure the color on the paint can contained the words "macaroni & cheese". so as much as i ADORE the color (seriously, i still love it 2 years later) it's a BITCH to photograph. seriously. custom white balance or not- every time i tried my eyes would bleed. & when i tried editing them...yeah no. the room looked pink.
it was a super fail. even with my off camera flash, fail fail fail.

so i said whatever. but then i upgraded my camera. (have i mentioned i upgraded to the Nikon D700 & i'm pretty much in love with it. no, i'm not having it's babies (this baby = the husband's) but i might consider it in the future)- anyway, my D700 has crazy noise control @ a super high ISO. like, CRAZY. my D90 was awesome & i still think of it fondly- but there is a big diff & the D700 totally wins.

i finally (right after afternoon nap time) ran downstairs & cranked my ISO up to 6,400. that's right people, 6,400. boom. win. finally.

no flash, barely any natural light & an orange bedroom- somewhat successfully captured.

some of the shots still = funky color wise, but all in all the pictures are pretty accurate.
so without further adieu, alex's big girl room.

now- a few things:
- my favorite framed print of a sloth & a little girl reading (which used to sit on top of her book cubby) is missing. remind me to tell you the story of how my 3 year old managed to grab the framed print, smash it to the ground & walk on the broken glass. amazingly enough, she managed to escape with 1 tiny cut on her finger. only 1! but that tiny cut bled like a mofo all over the print, her floor, her door, her bed sheets...etc etc. so alas, no print for now. must replace.
- there isn't much on her walls. no indeed. the husband feels physical pain when i nail nails. so i try & spare him. i'm also so undecided on what i want to hang & where- so alas. the poor kid has lived with all but bare walls for 2 years. but i'm going to rectify that. i bought an adorable shelf (Land of Nod) & i've pinned a zillion prints to print & hang. i also have some magnetic paint (crazy stuff) that i plan to dedicate a 4x4 amount of wall space too- complete with colorful magnetic Tegu blocks that the girls go for Christmas. so let's do this.
- this room will only look like this for another couple weeks. & then- out goes the toddler bed + the dresser & in comes 2 twin beds. omg. yes, the girls will be sharing a room to make room for baby bird#3. i debated over a bunk bed or 2 twin beds & finally (after finding some awesome West Elm beds that i adore) decided on the twin beds. their mattresses came in last week but the beds won't be here until the end of Feb. so we wait.
- i really love the orange. i wish you could see it in real life- it's so fun & vibrant but also not overwhelming. the furniture is white because, well yeah. orange & white work. i wish there was more natural light (we're only working with a small window because her room is in the basement) but it gets pretty bright during the we make due.
- my child spends almost no time in her room outside of sleeping. seriously. now that the girls will be sharing, & with baby #3 coming, i plan on changing that a bit. i want to make it fun &  a bit more comfy so they can play without worrying about waking up the baby. but it's a small space & choosing the twin beds meant sacrificing extra room. so ideas are welcome. the space as a whole will be changing, so my goal it to fit in a reading/sitting nook (maybe where those pillows are) so the girls can spend time in their room when needed.

& etc etc etc. i'm excited for them to share their room. that was the main reason i went with twin beds over a bunk bed. i think they'll prefer being able to see each other & talk & share sister stuff. plus i think it's a tad bit safer (my girls are insane. crazy insane.) i have so many decorating ideas- i just need to get off my butt & make them happen. most are diy (prints, pillows, etc) but a few require $$$ (damn you expensive rugs & shelving) so i'm procrastinating. but my goal is to have them sharing the space by March & to finish making it perfect by June...goals people. goals.
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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

they say things

i wish i could bottle up all of the nifty things alex & brynn say.
perhaps i should start carrying around a tape recorder.

- alex says something witty & epic.
- i pull out my tape recorder, hit record & repeat said witty & epic comment.

there would be 2 benefits to this.

1. i'd be able to remember all of the awesome things they come up with.
2. people would probably think i'm a reporter or an author or a foreign correspondent. then they wouldn't question my unwashed hair, crooked glasses & pilling fleece jacket. they'd just accept it as part of me being awesome & eccentric because clearly my genius mind is constantly churning out bits of awesome so i clearly have no time for things like haircuts, eye wear that isn't 3 years old & a new (perhaps fashionable) jacket.

yes. note to self: buy mini recorder.
but for serious. my children say amazing things. things like:

- "mom. i want a bagel...with cheese on it." -alex
- "mom, my poop smells terrible." -brynn
- "mom, whatcha got there?" -alex
- "mom, you're not sad. you're happy!" -brynn
- "mom, daddy is better." -alex
- "STUPID CAT!!!!" -brynn
- "mom. stay here. watch me poop." -alex
- "mom. i don't want my food. i want your food." -brynn
- "DAD, MOM HIT ME! THAT'S NOT NICE! SHE NEEDS AN UH-OH!" -alex (i'm not even going to try & explain)
- "mom, alex is naughty. she needs an uh-oh. i'm really mad!" -brynn
- (gasps) "momma! that dress is beautiful! you're a princess!" -alex & brynn
- "mom, you have a biggie butt!" -alex & brynn
- "mom, you have a hairy face. like daddy." - alex (wtf kid?)
- "daddy. you're home. welcome home!" -brynn
- "mom, that lady looks like a hippopotamus." -alex (the lady was very normal & non hippo looking)
- "momma, i want some coffee!!!" -brynn (i swear she doesn't drink coffee)
- "dad...just LISTEN to me!" -alex
- "mom, look at your boobies! they're big....i have little boobies." -brynn
- "mom, dad, you're my best friend." -alex & brynn

& the list goes on. & on. & on.
not a day goes by where i'm not mesmerized by something that flies out of their little mouths. something every day or something new. something that they're repeating or something that they've come up with all on their own (like brynn, who has taken to using the word "yestertime." i'm pretty sure it's a mix of yesterday & another time because when she uses it, it makes perfect sense.)

"mom, i'll do that yestertime." "mom, i like cake yestertime." "NO ALEX! YESTERTIME!"

see what i mean?

they're like sponges. soaking up all the good (& sometimes bad) things & wringing them out while i watch in fascination, sometimes horror & lots of pride.

the other day i was furious with alex over something. i'm pretty sure she's managed to smack her sister, talk back to me & dump an entire plate of food on the floor. on purpose. in the space of 3 minutes.
as my voice rose & rose alex looked at me & said, "mom. just calm down. it's ok. you'll fix it."

how do you not just stop? & laugh. & maybe cry a little....& then put her in time out because after all, she did hit her sister. not cool.
but still. awesome, right?

i guess my point is that our kids are pretty kick ass. & i think they get a good % of that from us. which means we're pretty kick ass & despite our worries, fears, trepidation & lack of haircuts + fashionable wardrobes: we're doing a pretty good job. high five.

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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

alex's 3rd birthday

alex turned 3. in september. so like, 5 years ago in blogging time.
i consulted her on the desired theme for her party & she relied: "cake. & presents."

well kid. thanks for your input. so i decided on an Aloha theme. why? because i like hawaii. because i wish i lived there. because oriental trading was having a super sale on their aloha crap. perfect.

the forecast called for rain so i ordered this tent from Amazon: huge party tent
i was a little skeptical in regards to the quality but i have to say, i was impressed. yeah- it wasn't a wedding quality tent, but it was perfect for backyard parties. it went up easy & didn't bend, rip or break. it handled 2 days of rain (afterwards) & it came down in 1 piece, wrapped up & ready to go for next year.

anyway, it didn't rain. but still. we had sun shelter & somewhere to hang party things.
i made aloha type foods & drinks & instructed people to wear their hawaiian best.

the adults sat on mats/stood & the kids sat at the picnic table/laps. they played with stickers & coloring books & simply ran around. i didn't really attempt any games because we ranged from 1-3 years old & i just didn't see it happening.

it was a great party. plenty of food, friends, family & alex got more princess stuff than anyone could ever want. ever. seriously. make it stop.

picture overload:

food: the husband smoked pork (it's his "thing" & he's quite good at it) & we made BBQ pulled pork. i also made BBQ pulled chicken, homemade BBQ sauce, coconut rice (rice cooker) & pani pop (hawaiian bread).
cheese & crackers  veggies & dip, veggie chips, fresh pineapple, sweet & sour cucumbers, juice, soda, seltzer water & passion ice tea lemonade made up the snacks & drinks.

dessert: i made pineapple angel food cake with German buttercream. the cupcakes were white cupcake with German buttercream. i also made mini crème brûlée's topped with coconut milk whipped cream (aaaamazing). 

favors: i made mini pineapple angel food cake loaves + hawaiian suckers for the adults. the kids got bags filled with fun hawaiian toys, stickers, suckers & other random things.

it was fun, fairly simple & came together really easily. this is her last "big" party (each kid gets 3- then we start the big parties again when they hit grade school) so i wanted it to be special.
she loved it (although she loved her princess stuff more) & it was a fantastic way to ring in her 3rd awesome year of life.

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