Saturday, November 12, 2011

Catch up!

So much has happened and I have been terrible about posting what has been going on.

We moved to Scottsdale and it has been a big and exciting change for the whole family.

Leaving our friends and home in Wilmette was sad for all of us. There were many tears shed. The girls really miss their bffs the Baisleys and we miss our amazing community in Wilmette.

Arizona is a whole new world for our family.

I was pretty firm that I wanted to drive to our new home. I just couldn't imagine leaving the house with a couple suitcases. I knew there would be a large pile of odd and ends that didn't make it onto the truck that we could shove into the suburban. I couldn't deal with the stress of flying with the family while hysterically crying after saying goodbye. We're already a spectacle going through airports and having mom sobbing uncontrollably would just add to the circus. I'm not sure why I possibly thought that driving for three days and staying at roadside hotels would be easier than three hours on a plane but Rick, in his wisdom, deferred to what I wanted with some gentle suggestions that flying would actually be a better idea. So...we road tripped.

Our first scenic stop was at a mini version of Stonehenge in Kansas somewhere. Katie is already thinking this was a big mistake.
Next was Cabella's outdoor world.

When we arrived in Albuquerque for our final night and pulled up to the hotel, the backseat of our car looked like we were transporting a group a child hoarders to treatment. It was like those old VWs you sometimes park next to with floor to ceiling junk and wonder how anyone could possibly drive around with so much crap in their car. I think the valet was waiting for a family of feral cats to leap out of the layers of clutter covering the floor of the car when he got a look inside. All I could do was shovel with my hands layers of the crayons, stickers, markers, coloring books, beads and snacks that I had so lovingly packed for each girl in their own backpack before we left and dump it all in the trash can on the sidewalk.
Ceci asked "are we there yet" before we reached St Louis and I think she least enjoyed our journey. She said the other day that she wanted to move back to Wilmette and then hesitated and said she had changed her mind and didn't want to move. I asked her why she now didn't want to move back and her reply was "If we move back, do we have to drive back?" I told her we could fly and she said that in that case she'd like to move back.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Sophia begged me to do school chorus in the fall but I said no for a couple of reasons. She was way too busy with other activities and singing in tune isn't her passion or gift. She just didn't want to wait in line on Tues/Thur mornings before school with the boys since "EVERY" girl in the second grade goes to chorus practice those mornings at 8:00am. In the spring a neighbor offered to drive her to early practice so I relented and signed her up. After a couple weeks of me tiptoeing into her room and gently coaxing her out of sleep in the mornings she decided she really didn't want to do chorus any more. After listening to her whine twice a week all fall I told her this was her decision and I made her follow through.

It all led up to the big Harper Chorus concert in May. My parents came along to help me and thank God they were there. I don't think I could have managed alone.

Sophia did a great job and was very proud to be up on stage. The girls LOVED the show. They are still singing the songs. Ella saw it during the day at school and said that at one point she didn't know why but she got tears in her eyes and almost started crying because it was so "awesome". It was really sweet.

My major fear was that Katie or Ceci would ruin all the videos being taken by proud parents. This didn't happen although at one point during a very quiet song by the small chorus (the older children who can sing in tune), Ceci yelled "I got a STRIKE!" I had given her my phone to play a game with no sound feeling pretty proud of my parenting until she put her stamp forever on the home videos of the performance.

Ceci requested the elaborate "two buns" hairstyle. I did my best. This is the first and last time I did this 'do.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Katie making friends

Katie and Ceci are very friendly and go out of their way to say hi to strangers and will talk to just about anyone. We were at a restaurant waiting outside for our table on a nice evening when Katie zoomed in on a group of people smoking outside the restaurant. She walked right over and started talking to them. They all kind of chuckled and said "yes". She shrugged her shoulders and said bye. I asked her what she said to them.

Katie: I asked them if they knew smoking was bad for you and they said "yes".

She gave me that same shoulder shrug to say I did my job, what else can I do.

Last week we were at Target eating lunch. This is a sentence I never thought I'd say in my life.

There was a very large construction worker ordering his meat lovers pizza at the counter. Katie hopped up, said hi to him and then gave him a big hug. Her arms barely made it halfway around his knees. He gave her a big smile and she looked up at him and said "I love you". It made everyone smile. He kept saying that made his day. She has a way of cheering people up everywhere.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Deep thoughts with Katie

I LOVE pizza.

I want to marry pizza.

Then I'm going to eat my husband.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Car rides with Sophia and Ella

Last night I went with the girls to watch Sophia dance at a local Irish restaurant/pub and we met our friends the Lazars and their extended family for dinner.

We were all exhausted driving home and then out of the total silence came Ella's little voice from the third row:

Ella: I wish I had a step mother.

me: What? Why?

Ella: Carleigh has one.

I realized she was talking about Carleigh's step-grandparents who were there.

Sophia: That would mean that mom was DEAD and dad married another lady.

Ella: I don't actually want a step-mother.

Sophia: AWKward...

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Irish Dancing season

March is Irish Dancing season as Sophia dances in a number of parades and local celebrations. Sophia LOVES Irish dance and Ella has been hooked as well. They both dance around the house saying the steps over and over. A mom taped the one last week at a local church St Patrick's Day party. Sophia is a beginner and in the group with the white blouses and blue skirts. She's the only one in a blonde wig I think. Near the end of the first link and the third. At the end when Sheila Tully asks someone if they want to learn a new step and they say "no"...that's Ceci. :)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Daddy the hair model?

It was a slow afternoon at our house and the girls decided to try a hair salon with the little hair Rick has. The were able to put both bows and flowers in his short 'do. Sophia has face paint from the Northwestern Women's basketball game I took her to earlier in the day.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Collection

At the Wilmette library they have various collections of residents displayed. Most of these collections reside in the homes of residents over the age of 75. Lots of hummels, salt and pepper shakers, etc. Ella was determined to display the girls' extensive Silly Bandz "collection". They pestered Rick to ask about how to get a display case. He asked at the front desk assuming they would dismiss the girls with a smile.

Rick: How do collections get displayed?

Librarian: I can put you on a list and we'll call when a case opens up.

Rick: Ummmm, it's a collection of SILLY BANDZ...

Librarian: Just write your name here and we'll call.

Rick: The collection belongs to my girls here....RUBBER BRACELETS....

Librarian: OK, write your name and number.

So, he did. That night every time the phone rang Ella would jump. "Was it the LIBRARY?????"

Then, two months later we got THE call. They were ready for our collection of 67 silly bandz. This trend is already passe among the kindergarten set but the girls were beyond thrilled to exhibit their collection. They dug out all the silly bandz they could find from under couch cushions and proudly headed to the library.

Sophia and Ella made a beautiful sign to accompany their prized collection and Rick took them down to organize the elaborate display and decide how to arrange the rubber bracelets. I'm sure that once word gets out they will be selling tickets for this collection. They may have to live without their bracelets for a while because I have a strong suspicion that this collection will be in heavy demand to go on loan to libraries around the world.

Here is the iphone picture Rick took of the proud collectors in front of their display case:

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Happy Birthday Katie and Cecilia

Katie and Cecilia turned four last month and I can't believe it has been four years since I had two sweet little babies. That may be my mom selective memory kicking in but I don't remember them giving me any problems. This year they have grown up a lot and we are really seeing their little personalities emerging.

Katie is a sweetheart. She's the first one up each morning and comes right into our room and puts her little hand on my back or face to wake me up. She's always smiling and loves to laugh. She gives everyone hugs. She gave our real estate agent a big hug last night for putting flowers in her room and said "I can't believe you put flowers in my room!"

Cecilia is a ham. Her sense of humor is coming out and she loves to make people laugh. She's also quick to give someone a hug when then look sad. Kids are drawn to her and she has made lots of friends at school this year.

Watching the bond they have and seeing them interact is fascinating to everyone around them. They don't let each other get away with anything and will correct each other when they don't agree with how their sister is retelling a story. They make me smile everyday.

They both love playing soccer. I signed the girls up for soccer at the park district and they are definitely the stars of their coed class. While the other girls are giggling in a group, Ceci and Katie are kicking the ball and celebrating each goal. They give their coach a hug on the way in and say "I love you Coach Abe". A usually stern Abe looks at me and says he can't believe how cute they are. Their soccer nickname has become the Turkey Twins.

Here are some photos from our family party:

I got a generic birthday cake from Jewel and we all decorated it with a variety of left over cake characters. I think we had Barbie, Dora, a couple Care Bears and a random Sesame Street marching band member. Katie and Ceci thought it was a blast to decorate their own cake.