Thursday, February 24, 2011

My baby is 2!

Actually -- Cassandra has been two for more than two months already. I just never got around to finishing this post. And also, she's not a baby anymore and will even tell you as much. She walks and talks and sings and dances and jumps and screams and has a personality all her own. She wants to do everything herself and is frustrated that sometimes she cannot. She is as fearless as her brother was cautious at this age. (One could argue that his caution was a result of -- or at least supported by -- my "first child" nervousness.)

For the most part, Cassandra adores her older brother and will pretty much copy whatever he says or does. This makes 1st visits to the dentist a breeze. It also (usually) makes things like riding in an infant swing or sitting in a high-chair out of the question.

She loves to cook. At the risk of never having dinner guests at our house again, here she is in a montage from 'cooking' sessions with Brad, Grandma Susan, and Auntie Jenna (all taken months ago).

I am head-over-heals in love with every ounce of this strong-willed little girl. Remind me that I said that come the teenage years.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Cloudy with a chance of the kitchen!?

No, there was no rain in the kitchen or even in the forecast on this particular day last week. This is just Cassandra insisting on what clothing she wants to wear and when. She picked the raincoat and then spied the umbrella a few hours later. Truth be told, we're lucky she is even clothed at all, ever. She seems to much prefer to be naked. I have no idea how they keep clothing at her at school, truly.

Wait, you want to know why she is standing on the chair? What else would a two-year-old do when she wants to reach something...simply push said chair over to counter (near knives, toaster, etc.) and get whatever it is you want.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy _________(holiday starting with the letter "V") Day!

In January, I stumbled across a mention of some MadLibs-themed valentines by a crafty, mommy-blogger friend whom I've known since I was a little girl. I always knew she was talented, but further digging revealed that she actually wrote an article about her MadLibs valentines. (See page 22 of this issue of Modern Handmade Child for the article or just go to her blog to see a photo of her masterpieces.)

Anyway, Zander loves MadLibs these days and knowing I am nowhere near as artistic as Kristi, I decided to take her idea and work with it best I could. Zander was thrilled to come up with the text for a personalized class valentine. In all honesty, I *did* steer him from having each blank be a "noun" in which the word "poop" or "booger" would easily fit. He is a six-and-a-half-year-old boy, after all.

He dictated and I typed. Afterward, we printed it and tested it a few times for good measure. (I'm sure this breaks every copyright possible, but it's 1st grade, so I'm hoping to avoid jail time.) Next, Zander wrote the names of his classmates and his name on each sheet, we affixed individually-wrapped lifesavers, rolled the papers up, and tied them with a ribbon. (See photo above for the finish products.)

Below is only an excerpt. (I've blurred out a few identifying characteristics to protect the innocent.)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Tribute to Lisa on her Birthday

This is an tribute to my dearest friend who also happens to be my cousin. She turns the big 4-0 today and having just experienced this same 'big' birthday, I am taking this opportunity to express myself about her and our lifelong friendship.

We've know each other since we were young girls...

....although from the very start, our purpose together seemed to be to act older than we were. Think of pre-tweens putting oranges in their shirts and pretending to be hookers. (Wait, what? You didn't do that too? Oh, forget it then.) We had x-rated inside jokes that dissolved us into fits of uncontrollable giggles, which in hind sight, we didn't even understand ourselves. None of that mattered though.

She's who I call when I need to vent or cry or laugh or share something embarrassing and/or disgusting. I say "call" because she lives in California which sometimes feels worlds away from D.C. When we lived in the same city we had the capacity to be dangerous and quite silly together. See, for example, a Halloween on which we chose to dress slutty like twin jesters. (What you've never heard of kissin' cousin twin jesters? Oh, forget it then.)

Over the years, we've traveled together -- although not nearly as much as either one of us would have liked. Here we are on our way home from a jaunt to Boston...

...and in Amsterdam...

...and San Francisco, which she now calls home with her husband Chris and daughter Zoe.

She stood with me when I got married, and I with her.

She's cuddled my babies, showered them with thoughtful gifts, and clothed my little girl with hand-me-downs from her well-dressed daughter (and has thrown in some adorable etsy purchases which I couldn't afford myself).

I know that deep down she thinks she doesn't deserve any tribute, but I am quite sure that she does. My life would be so much emptier without her. I daydream of us as old Jewish ladies reminiscing about our exploits. Wait, I think we *are* there already.

HAPPY 40th BIRTHDAY LISA! I love you.

P.S. I also know that she has never seen a photo of herself that got 100% approval (much like me) and that I am taking some serious risks posting these.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Boys sledding (or "Smokin' Six Year Olds")

Note: Alternate title suggestion compliments of Brad.

In the first part of this video Zander and his buddy Champe are sledding off of the back porch of Champe's house. Brad requested some "whooping and hollering" and the boys oblige. In the second part of the clip (at a hill at nearby Wolf Trap), the boys rode facing each other and I'm pretty sure they should have been wearing helmets considering the speed of the sled. Glad I wasn't there as I would have aged a few extra years watching. Yes, yes, I'm a neurotic Jewish mother. I realize that.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Coming Soon

I have all these great blog posts in my head and rarely the time to get them down....Long sob stories about historic gridlock, thundersnow, and seven-hour-commutes only to arrive to a home sans power....Local grandparents to the rescue with loving arms and warm beds....Clever things that the elder child comes up with and toddler things that the younger child does (e.g. walking by a counter where bagels are being sold, grabbing one, and taking a big bite).

I mean it when I say that I don't know how people do it with more than two children and full-time jobs. I love our life right now, but it's busy. Really, really busy.

The good news is that last night while the rest of the country was watching a certain football game, I got caught up on some blogging. So, coming soon...Cassandra's cooking videos, Zander speed sledding, and more.

Sunday, February 6, 2011


My mom recently transferred thousands of slides and old family photos to jpeg format and gave each of us a CD with the photos. The picture below, which has always been a favorite of mine, is of my maternal grandparents on their honeymoon taken in Atlantic City circa 1934.