Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Home improvement

I know that I've promised to post Disney cruise pictures and details, and I will (when I retrieve those photos from my camera!)... but I have been somewhat preoccupied of late with plans to expand our home.

Well, here.... just check out the photo, below, to see what I mean! ;)

And if it hasn't quite hit you yet, try this photo on for size!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

My Butterfly

I went to pick up Jaiden from school the other day, and I couldn't spot her right away. I knew what she was wearing that day, but something was different....

Apparently, her entire class had a face-painting party, and Jaiden chose a butterfly! It turned out very cute. I felt bad that we had to scrub it off that evening before bed.

Of course, it's not at all surprising that Jaiden chose a butterfly. She's always liked them -- from the colorful nylon and wire butterflies that flutter from her bedroom ceiling to the real butterflies we recently watched change from tiny caterpillars. I guess Mommy has always liked them, too. Jaiden even wore butterfly wings in our wedding!

Jaiden is my little butterfly. She has grown and changed so much since the first day I saw her... and she's grown into a beautiful, bright little girl, who enjoys sitting around quietly just as much as she loves to flit and flutter around from one activity to the next.

"Love is like a butterfly: It goes wherever it pleases, and it pleases wherever it goes."
~Author Unknown

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Author's Tea

I know that I promised vacation posts, but I need to backtrack a little bit first....

Jaiden's first-grade class hosted an "Author's Tea" a few weeks ago in which parents came to get "autographs," pick up hand-made bookmarks, eat snacks and listen to each child (or each "famous author") read his or her book to the audience. It was VERY cute.

All of the books looked very professional -- like real books! They were all large, bound, hard cover books with beautifully illustrated covers. (When I was a kid, our class books were completely hand made.... with decorative contact paper, crayons, markers, pencils and plain, old white paper...stapled together!)

Many of the kid's books were about dogs, tigers, lizards, cars, princesses and shopping malls. So I was surprised to see that Jaiden's book was a story about her mommy, entitled, "My Mom"! (Awwww!)
(My story, on the other hand, was about a family of bunny rabbits...going for ride on a roller coaster. Hmmm....)

A few tears escaped as I listened to Jaiden's little voice read about some of the fun and silly things that we do together.

Here are a few pages to enjoy!

This one shows Jaiden playing basketball (she's shooting the ball at a very colorful basketball goal)... and Mommy is cheering for her!

This page is just darn cute. But I am not sure why Jaiden colored me green. Maybe I was sick in this photo... or I just got back from mowing lawns, so I'm covered in grass clippings. Or maybe it's just green spraypaint.

On this page, Jaiden is talking about us playing a game called Looney Laundry. It's a real game. A board game. It's not some crazy thing I made up just to get her to help wash, dry, fold or put away clothes! ;)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Back From the Magic

We just returned from our wonderful 7-day cruise aboard the Disney Magic.... So, we're all attempting to get readjusted to the "real" world again. I will be sure to blog about the trip soon, but in the meantime, there are a few things like my job, cleaning, laundry, shopping and other random work stuff occupying my time!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Field Day fun

I wasn't actually there for the festivities, but Jaiden recently had field day at school.... so, here are a few shots of the fun!

This is Jaiden with her very good friend, Rachel. (The two of them have the same birthday!)

Here are some of the first grade girls being cute and posing for photo opps.

Here are some of the first grade boys being weird and making the girls laugh, scream, run, cry.... whatever gets a reaction! ;)

And here is lunch time. I believe Jaiden is talking animatedly with an imaginary friend. Either that, or she's playing charades by herself... because no one else seems to be in on whatever she's doing!

Monday, May 4, 2009

The Triumphant End of Baton

If you've followed my blog at all, you may have seen a few posts over the last 8 months or so about Jaiden and baton. Jaiden was pretty thrilled about taking baton this year -- mostly because her friends were there... and because they got to wear cute costumes. But she never really spent much time practicing at home. So I was never too sure of her interest.
Of course, she's talked repeatedly about basketball and about playing again next year. But I believe that this is the end of baton.
It was a good run.
And it ended with her recital last week... and with her very first trophy!
I was a bit anxious about the performance... mostly due to the lack of interest in practicing at home. But Jaiden did GREAT! I was so proud!
And since she told me after the recital that she isn't doing baton again next year, I suppose this is a very exciting conclusion to the baton era.

Friday, May 1, 2009

The McWane Experience

I recently volunteered to be a chaperon. That, in and of itself, is dangerous enough. But this particular school filed trip was to the McWane Science Center.
Now, Jaiden and I have been there before, and we had a really nice time. But this was a completely different experience.
Just imagine a multi-story building packed with hundreds of loud, bright, hands-on exhibits with thousands of 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade boys and girls -- runny noses, dirty hands and all -- racing around, screaming, crying, tripping, laughing, hitting, coughing, burping, etc., etc.
I guess the kids had a good time.
Me? I should have stayed home.... ;)
At any rate, the photos show Jaiden and her classmates having lots of fun!

Amazing how exciting blocks are when they are not at your own house.

This was pretty cool, but the little boys weren't as patient as the little girls.

Ah, yes, it's not a visit to McWane without playing the giant piano. (Did I say playing? I meant banging out dissonant chords and auditory mush.)

Hmmm... broken escalators on the day the place is completely overrun with little, sugar-hyped people? How convenient.

Fun with sand art on a spinning wheel.

Jaiden made a circle. Ooooohhh! ;)

The Da Vinci exhibit was really cool, but the kids raced from piece to piece in a fuzzy blur of yellow shirts.

Believe it or not, this fish was the favorite of most of the kids. (I think we just need to build a giant indoor playground, lock 'em all in and let them climb, jump, swing and run around until they pass out.)