Sunday, December 31, 2006

happy new year!

here comes 2007!





oh and this is lizzie when i got home from work at 11:30pm...:)



aaron and emily, the diehards up at midnight!

Saturday, December 30, 2006

day off

clean up, stage one....moving things out of the house and into the garage/studio. it will take a whole day to sort the garage, another day.


then spent the rest of the day at the park chasing shadows.


Friday, December 29, 2006

getting ideas for camp fire

what a neat idea from martha stewart. i was really sad when they canceled the kids martha stewart magazines, i have a stash of them carefully stored and look at them often. i hope someday they bring it back. at least for now they have the kids section on the web.

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the only problem with this craft is the ham tin part, i am vegetarian so i will need to find some ham eating folks to save me a tin.



didnt know if i could even post a picture of this movie, but it seems to be working. this movie was so funny and moving at the same time. after months and months of zero down time to watch movies, it was such a pleasure to watch! i like movies with characters that aren't perfect and look like everyday people. it was quirky and hilarious too.

new years resolutions


one of many.

more december birthdays


HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHRIS!! you're catching up to me!

forever fixer-upper

this is what happens when you ignore a sinking brick. it finally gives way displaying a tunnel linked to china below. this was one of those, "NO WAY!" yelled out loud as your foot sinks in. i cannot believe this hole lurked beneath this path, it was a good foot deep when the brick was pulled out. thank god no one was hurt! :) now we need new brickwork AND a new front fence.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

cabin fever

i am hesitant to blog about my cabin, because i honestly feel it is such a luxury. i really struggle each month to make the payment on it, seriously, i have to ask myself over and over if it is worth the financial sacrifice. i basically work a weekend or two extra each month to pay for it. for years and years i have had a love/hate relationship with where i live. i love being close to the beach and close to my family. but over all, i have a wanderlust so strong, i read travel memoirs by the dozens and long to live ANYWHERE! on a cliff in italy, an igloo in greenland, a tropical island, an adobe cave in the desert, a straw hut in name it, i want to go there. i traveled every year to europe for years, charging my way across the globe, paying for it later, who cares! then kids came along and it just became too expensive and difficult. emily was awesome on a trip we took to italy with my parents when she was a year and a half old, but when lizzie joined us it was just too much. if i had unlimited amounts of money, then i am sure traveling abroad would be different, but we are always on a major budget. this doesn't mean i won't ever take my kids on an international trip, it just means not until we can enjoy it...maybe paris? :)

so, back to the cabin. i needed something to help me with my taxes (i am self employed) and we needed something to do in lieu of big vacations, something to help us get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. a friend turned us on to the green valley lake area and immediately we were hooked. it's a small vacation area, small and rural and very laid back. cabins at the time were expensive, but no where near what houses in long beach were going for. we pulled out some equity and made the plunge. i can say, it has been a great lesson in paying bills on time and cutting it close each and every month. my comfort level for a checking account balance has been greatly challenged, but month after month we seem to make it work. it is just a priority and i can say i am thankful every time i am able to get away and relax up in the mountains, back to nature. i have always been a "camp" type person, having spent most of my summers away at camp and loving every minute of it! i am so jealous of people who live every day of their lives in a natural setting, i know someday i will too.

for anyone struggling to take a chance on a vacation home or anything risky like this, i say, just go for it! if it's right for your family, something you really need to do, just go for it. we have made it work for two years now and the difference it has made in our lives is priceless.


fisher price 1970's version of our cabin, gotta love ebay!


our silkscreened version of cabin living.


i had the kids paint their version of our cabin during our first weekend trip (of course i had to try one too). the a-frame book was a present from my husband, we love mid century modern design, the cabin was built in the sixties and compliments our long beach house built in 1953.

Monday, December 25, 2006


this was hands down the best christmas ever. happy healthy kids and parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. seems too good to be true after the frantic rush to get everything done. as i have gotten older, i have had true blue panic attacks worrying about all the things on my to-do list. this year i didn't get a decent cookie baked (our retro oven takes over an hour to warm up, no time for that!), but i did manage to make a dozen handmade gifts, a definite record. hooray for me! the kids got some toys, some clothes, some handmade gifts and i made sure i was off work a full three days in a row. between the cabin trip, the snowman and snow fight in our long beach neighborhood with fellow neighbors and all the christmas festivities, it was a full three days of fun. 100_9739



Merry Christmas!

Lizzie finishes off santa's cookie.100_9982

homemade presents!101_0029


one of my reject robots.


a custom rocket, with flower fire power.



Most likely this will be the first christmas elizabeth remembers.

Sunday, December 24, 2006


ok, had to bring back some of that lovely snow to good old long beach. yes, our neighbors must have been jealous! we had the only real snowman around!100_9835





a snowman in long beach!100_9793_1

green valley lake snowman.


green valley lake

spent the weekend at green valley lake, has to be the best weekend ever. the snow was so white and powdery, just sweet!100_9648







hot chocolate and cookies!


love this family.100_9733



Friday, December 22, 2006

through the eyes of a child

the other day i went to get lunch together for liz and she kept saying she wanted the "butterfly horse"...not clearly, sort of jumbled, but after awhile i figured out what she was saying. i still didn't know what that was...until i searched through some plates and found this.100_9362

i think she got it right.

Thursday, December 21, 2006