Friday, April 30, 2010

Emma's Favorite Things.....9 years old

Here are Emma's favorite things. I think it is so funny that she and Henry had the same answer for two items- place and most beautiful thing that you have ever seen. How can you not love these kids when they reply with those answers.

Favorite book- The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane
Favorite Movie- Harry Potter
Favorite Show- Toddlers and Tiaras (mind you she has seen it once- "glitz")
Favorite Season- Spring
Favorite Color- baby blue and chocolate brown
Favorite Flower- Lavender
Favorite Sport- Soccer
Favorite Thing to do- Train Max
Favorite Place- Home
Favorite Toy- anything that she plays school with
Favorite Place to visit- Tergernsee, Germany
Would Like to invent- a pill that would allow a human/animal to live forever
Favorite Candy- dark chocolate
Favorite Food- Barefoot Contessa's tomato and angel hair dish
Favorite Drink- cold milk
Most Beautiful thing that you have seen- my family
Favorite Dessert- chocolate fondue
Favorite Holiday - My birthday (didn't know that classified as a holiday)
Favorite Friend- Lizzie B.
Favorite Article of Clothing- Juicy Cortez (she means Couture) Jeans
Favorite Activity- working on projects in school
Favorite Music- can't think of anything
Favorite Dinner: Emerald Stir Fry from Ellie Kreiger
Favorite Restaurant- Beer Garden in Tergernsee, Germany
Favorite Time of the day- getting into bed at night
Favorite Pet- Max
Favorite Wild Animal- baby squirrel that was in our backyard last summer
Favorite thing is school- teachers
Favorite sport to do at home- swim
Favorite Dream Project- New bedroom
Favorite Game- Life
Favorite Vacation- Europe

Henry's Favorite Things.......Age 7

Every year I try to get a list of the kids favorite things so that I can look back and have a snapshot into their world. So this morning over breakfast Henry and I came up with a list of his favorite things. He also chose this picture of himself as his favorite..are you kidding me?

Favorite Book- Any Harry Potter book
Favorite Movie- Any Harry Potter movie
Favorite Show- Phineas and Ferb
Favorite Season- Summer
Favorite Flower- Daisy
Favorite Sport- Soccer
Favorite Color- Green
Favorite thing to do- play with Legos
Favorite Place- Home
Favorite Toy- Rubix Cube
Favorite Place to visit: Germany
Wants to Invent- Flying Broomstick
Favorite Candy- Snickers with carmel
Favorite Food- Watermelon
Favorite Drink- Lemonade
Most beautiful thing he has seen- His Family
Favorite Dessert- Toll House Cookie Bars
Favorite Holiday- Thanksgiving
Favorite Friend- Nicholas E.
Favorite Article of Clothing: Mini Boden Plaid Dress Shirt
Favorite Activity- Making things out of clay
Favorite Song- You're Beautiful by Glee
Favorite Dinner- Clay Pot Chicken
Favorite Restaurant- Douza for Japanese
Favorite time of the day- Afternoon because I can play
Favorite pet- Max
Favorite wild animal: grizzly bear
Favorite thing at school- recess (where he chases the girls)
Favorite Character- Mickey Mouse
Favorite sport to do at home- street hockey
Favorite dream project- zip line or tree house

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

How many times does it take to have a child like a new food???

Ok, so I have planned new meals for every night this week. I had great expectations because Emma and Henry are both good eaters. Well, it has not gone as well as I had expected. Emma didn't like the Tortilla soup yesterday but she ate it and Henry and I were at war all during dinner tonight. He would not even put one piece of pasta to his lips and he puckered them up when I tried (he is 7 mind you). I had to bring out the big guns to have him at least take a "no thank you" bite. I also made Toll House cookie bars which are his favorite. He did finally try ONE piece of pasta and immediately stated he didn't like it. He then went to a bowl of cereal with blackberries..tough life. After that was gone he ate 5 Toll House bars.

I realize that I did something wrong tonight. He basically try one noodle and then had dessert for dinner. I need to have a better plan in the future.

I also need to lower my expectations and continue to make new meals but have the mindset that the meal will probably not be a success the first night out of the box.

Best book ever..


I just started this book and I can't put it down. This is a must read if you like a thiller. There are two additional books after this one so it just gets better and better.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My love affair with cookbooks..

Ok, I have a slight obsession with cookbooks. I love to read them cover to cover and drool over the photos. These are some of my favorites that I use all of the time. All of my cookbooks have grease stains, ear marked pages and comments written throughout. Luckily, I have children and a husband that are willing to try anything new..... This week I am making three new recipes all from Great Food Fast by Martha Stewart. Tonight, we are having Tortilla soup which has many different fixings that you can add to your own soup bowl...should be fun for the kids. Later this week, we are having baked buttermilk fried Chicken with carrot cumin coleslaw and a pasta dish with sausage, spinach, mozzarella cheese and pesto sauce. I will let you know how they turnout later on in the week.

Just a small sampling of my cookbooks.....there are so many more that I would love to have but enough is enough.

Henry has been working on this Lego project every free minute that he has had over the past three days. This is one complicated kit but he sticking with it even though there were some tears of frustration yesterday. I can't wait to see it completed!!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Most Improved Player

Emma had an amazing game this week. She was so strong in her foot work and defensive skills that her coach named her the "most improved player." She had a grin from ear to ear on our mile trek to the car when she told all of us as a family. She was so proud and we are so proud of her. Way to go Emma!!!

I know this picture is blurry but it was a great play and I captured it - blurry or not!!

Legos and LaLa Land

Here are two pictures from the weekend.......both make me laugh.

Henry building an enormous Lego project.

John and Max sleeping away on a Sunday afternoon.

Spring Soccer

Spring soccer has begun and both Emma and Henry couldn't be happier. They LOVE soccer!!! Henry is also playing baseball but that's as exciting as watching paint dry in my opinion. I love the fast pace nature of soccer.

Henry is very competitive as I am sure most boys are in sports. He keeps track of the score the whole time in his head. Yesterday, I had to retie his cleat and as I was tying he told me in a whisper that the score was 3 to 6 and that they would have to score four goals to win....I was cracking up!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Trader Joes to the rescue....

I love Trader Joes and here are a few of my very favorite items.

We love edamame. I serve it alone as a veggie and the kids suck them out one right after another. They are a great source of fiber and so fun to eat. I serve the shelled edamame in this dish by Ellie Kreiger. There is not one piece left ever- it is delicious.

Salty and Sweet need I say more......

Sublime is the correct word for these treats...the best ice cream cookie sandwich ever!!!! The cookies are chewy and the ice cream is so creamy.

I just found these croissants. They are the BEST. France has come to your kitchen. You let them sit out over night and when you come down in the morning your kitchen has that yeasty smell. Pop them in the oven for 20 minutes and voila....chocolate croissants like the Parisiens make. I am not kidding they taste just like the ones we had in Paris last year. A special treat for the kids in the morning before hopping on the big yellow school bus.

I am all about making your own bake goods but sometimes it is just better to buy the items that you can't master!!!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Newport, Rhode Island

Yesterday, we went to visit Newport. It was a beautiful spring day. We toured The Breakers the summer home of the Vanderbilt family. It was a amazing!!! We all participated in the audio tour which gave so many fun facts about the home and the people that lived there.

I can't believe that we have lived in Boston for so long and have never toured the mansions. You always take for granted what is in your backyard.

I am completely obsessed with urns and this one in particular took my breath away. I just love the face.

Walking the Cliff Walk....we were able to see the outside of many other mansions and people's private "homes" (I use this term very loosely).

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A simpler life..

As I look through our pictures taken last year in Europe, I think would it be easier to live in another country? I believe that the children of America are forced to grow up so incredibly quickly. John and I do our best to keep the outside influences at bay but it doesn't always work.

I see this little town nestled in the mountains of Germany and think that the kids there must be growing up at a slower pace. I am sure that it is not true but I have a hard time convincing myself otherwise. I worry about Emma and Henry's future and the pressures that they will have placed on them. I hope that they will be confident to stand up for what they believe in and be able to make good decisions (minus the 911 call).

I watched the news tonight...always a bad decision. We never have the news on when the kids are at home. What is the world coming to? If you watch the news you know what I am talking about. Every story is scarier than the last one.

I am not sure that there is a simpler place to live in the world but I am trying to make our home be influenced less by our culture and more by our values.

A job well done..thank you to everyone that helped Emma with this project!

A few weeks ago Emma started collecting items that our local animal shelter needed. Her teacher found out that she was doing something charitable and asked that her class participate. Many students participated along with family( thanks YaYa and Hugo) and friends (thank you to the Stedts). Emma and Henry didn't want to leave the Baypath and I knew that I was going to be asked if we could bring another dog home. My answer to that was "no way."

The Baypath Humane Society is an amazing organization that is really in the business of helping animals. Emma really chose a great place to help out!!
Henry and Emma loved walking this little pug around and he wanted to leave with us but maybe he will be able to snack on one of the treats that we brought or play with one of the toys that someone donated.

Thanks again to everyone.....we were so proud to bring all of these needed items to the dogs and cats!!!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Hagan turns 1 and The Boston Marathon

We were so happy to go back to New York to celebrate Hagan's first birthday. It was a great party!!!

The cousins together!!!

Laura did an amazing job on this party!!!

We were thrilled to be able to see the Boston Marathon. It is always such an amazing sight to watch the sea of runners coming at you. The kids were thrilled to have their hands slapped by numerous runners- they really felt as though they were a part of the marathon experience. The shot above is of the elite women runners.

The elite male runners. The guy in purple won and had the fastest course time ever.
We were able to see Shelly pass by at the speed of light! Thank god, she called my name out or we would have missed her. I heard "Joce" and then this shirt was thrown at me. I felt like I was at a rock concert and I caught the drum stick..... way to go Shell!!

Saturday, April 17, 2010


Our trip to Europe is canceled due to this volcano. I was packed and ready to go. My heart breaks for the memories that we won't have, the gelato that won't be in my stomach, the sights that we won't see and most importantly the fun times we won't have together as a family experiencing new things in Italy.


Friday, April 16, 2010

Kenyan Marathon Runners come to town..

Emma's school as a great event that they host every year. The elite runners from Kenya (they usually win the Boston Marathon) come to her school for a meet and greet. This is really one of the highlights from second and third grade. The windows below are from Emma's classroom -
JAMBO means welcome.

Click here for the local news coverage of the event.

Emma was able to shake the hand of the woman who won last year. So cool!!!!

I love going to the Marathon each year. It has a very special place in my heart because 6 years ago on Marathon Monday I came down with Streptococcus pneumonia. I was incredibly sick!!! Every year since that I feel especially grateful to be alive and be able to share life with my family and friends.

We missed it last year but might be able to see it this year if our plane doesn't take us to Tuscany and Germany. The volcano in Iceland is causing many flight cancelations and ours is one of them.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

911 call, visit from a police officer and an apology....

Yesterday, Henry was playing at a friend's house. They were throwing a hat up into the beams in a barn when the hat got stuck (which I am sure was their intention). A suggestion was made to call 911 and Henry thought he might just dial the numbers as a joke. Well, the call went through much to the children's surprise. The police immediately called back and then boys hung up on them...probably scared out of their minds. The police called back again and this time the mom picked up. The policeman was on his way.....

I was so disappointed that Henry would a) listen to someone else, b) dial the numbers 911 even if he thought it was a joke and c) not be scared out out his mind knowing that the cop was coming.

Once the police officer arrived, the boys apologized but I didn't think that it was enough for Henry. He came home and wrote a draft of a letter of apology and then copied it in his best handwriting. Once he was done we were on our way to the local police station. He handed the letter in for Officer Sutton. On the drive home, he said that he was sorry and it was a mistake. I hope that both Emma and Henry have learned something from the experience.

Thank you Officer Sutton for talking to the boys and for being so understanding!!!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Toes and Ciao to Max

Emma, my Mom and I were very lucky to go and pedicures done earlier in the week. It was so special looking down the row of chairs and seeing three generations. We had a blast! I look at what we all chose and it seems like the colors are very indicative of our personalities.

We all said goodbye to Max as he left to go on a little vacation with YaYa and Hugo. It was so funny to watch as he got into the car. At first he was so excited to be in the car but then he realized as they backed down the driveway that we weren't in the car. All of a sudden he cocked his little head and you could see the wheels turning. "Wait a second, why am I leaving and they are staying- something is not right." He then put his head out the window and looked back at us as they drove down the street. We will miss you Maxi but we will see you in a few weeks.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Lunch Box Notes

One of Emma and Henry's favorite things are Lunch Box Notes. I love to surprise them with these little thoughts in their lunch boxes when they are least expecting them. I think about them sitting down for lunch with their friends and finding these notes and smiling as they read them. I miss the kids when they are at school and I like to them to know that I am thinking about them even when I not there.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Weekend activities

Little League has begun in town and it was kicked off by a parade. Henry is very excited to be on the Rockies teams because of his connection with Colorado.

Wally showed up for the event.

John and Henry marching in the parade.

Emma and YaYa

Me and my Mom

Emma and I

Emma participated in a Poetry reading this weekend. She shared her Haiku poem on the sun. She read it beautifully to a room full of people. Way to go Emma!

Henry and Max
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