Tuesday, September 29, 2009

You say it's your birthday?

Jack and Joe both love to sing Happy Birthday. Joseph goes 2 or 3 verses with every toothbrushing, and he gets to decide who we sing to. Today Jack showed us how to make a birthday cake out of Play-do with crayons as candles. They both wanted to sing to Thomas the Tank Engine and all his friends.

We're all eagerly awaiting Jack's baby brother's birthday sometime next week!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Post It

Yesterday morning, before the fabulous fire engine sighting, we attended an event at Hillwood Estate hosted by Rainbow Families DC. Hillwood was founded by Marjorie Merriweather Post, an avid art collector, philanthropist, and "quintessential Washington, DC hostess." The estate, museum, and gardens are apparently "Where Fabulous Lives."

The Japanese-style garden was by far our favorite, with stepping stones through ponds and bridges to cross, while listening to the soothing waterfall cascading in the background.

There were many activities for the kids, like decorating dishes and hats, fancy dress-up, and a tea party on the Lunar Lawn, but there were also wide open expanses to run like wild, and even a putting green!

Since Mrs. Post hosted square dances on a regular basis, it was fitting that the DC Lambda Squares performed during the event. However, when they asked for "volunteers" to get a square dancing lesson, it was less than appropriate for Brent to throw me to the wolves. It was fine, until Joseph decided to join in. Any kind of dancing carrying almost 40 pounds is a challenge!

Fabulous, indeed!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Like a moth to a flame

We were on our way home for lunch after a fun morning out, when we passed by our beloved Turtle Park. Joseph's heart must have skipped a beat before squealing in delight when he noticed a line of fire engines by the entrance. Not to worry, no emergencies! Turns out it was a "Back to School" BBQ, and the fire fighters were doing the grilling. We had to stop, and got a free lunch as a bonus.

One of the firemen noticed Joseph's excitement and came over. His name is Joseph too, and he rocked Joe Joe's world when he offered to let him get inside the truck. Joseph also invited him over to the fire station for a tour anytime he wants. A new best friend for life!

Looks like we may have made the right decision for a Halloween costume.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I Scream...

Well, I could have screamed today - bad combination of a very early wake up call, a major temper tantrum at swim class, and a very unexpectedly short nap. But then Brent came home and suggested we go out for dinner as a treat. I got a frozen margarita, Joseph got chocolate ice cream for the 1st time.

We all enjoyed it immensely! No one was screaming, except for more ice cream.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Yes Man

When you're used to hearing "NO" all the time, you just run with it when you get a string of "Yeses."

Do you want to go the park? Yes!
It's a little chilly. Can I put a sweatshirt on you? Yes!
But it's still sunny, so you have to wear a hat, OK? Yes!
Ummm, do you want to try the new sunglasses we bought you too? Yes!

Watch out, ladies:

He even kept it all on all the way to the park. Then the novelty wore off, and it all came off.

Bella Marcella

Last night we finally had the pleasure of meeting our friends' new baby, Marcella. She was born just a few days before JT's birthday - so hopefully they won't be competing for attendance from our mutual friends at their respective birthday parties in the future! Cella is beautiful and easy going, a perfect combination! I finally got to give her the quilt I made for her, in her nursery colors, lavender and green.

We also got to spend time with friends we don't see often enough. Joseph loved eating at the kiddie table with Norah and Katie, who are Cella's 1st cousins.

Here's the quilt. It's named "Cella-bration." It has free-motion quilted buttlerfly details, which coordinated well with the outfit she was wearing.

Click on the "Corlette Gazette" link on the right if you want to see more of Cella!

Thursday, September 17, 2009


(Sounds even better without a mouthful of yogurt-covered raisins!)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Much ado about nothing

Forgot to post this one from our trip. Joseph kept pointing at the potty at the Ritz and saying poo poo, and he said "Yes" when Brent asked him if he wanted to try going poop on the potty like a big boy. He actually does tell us every time when he's pooped so we can change him, and will often even go on command in his diaper if you tell him to try, so why not?

But as the title implies, nothing happened. Not a surprise - 2 year old boys are not particularly known for their interest in toilet training.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Stick a fork in it,

it's DONE! I finally got around to the finishing touches on the swing set. Two months ago it looked like this, with a very patient toddler waiting to play:

My Dad and I had worked like crazy to get it up and ready for Joseph's 2nd birthday party, but we ran out of time for some of the detail work. We also left off the rock climbing wall, mostly since we knew no one could use it yet, but also because the yard really sloped off right where it's supposed to be attached. I finally had the time to build a box frame (which Brent kindly filled with dirt and mulch) to level and elevate the area.

We did the same around the ladder, just so it's easier to mow around. Plus, the kid loves to play with mulch, so it's extra-fun for him.

And lastly I added the steering wheel and telescope in the deck area, and I'm done!

Except for filling the sandbox. But that's Brent's responsibility.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Sea World

On Thursday we had our 1st pediatric dental visit. They say these days you're supposed to do see a dentist as early as 1 year old, but why?! We knew Dr. K. had an ocean theme in the office, so Joe Joe wore his whale shirt and sweater to make a good 1st impression. The waiting room has a beach mural. Very cool!

The umbrella is actually painted in a corner of the wall! It looks so real. Our "Joe" beach tote was the perfect accessory.

The rest of the office is all underwater scenes, like the whale behind us, and the video monitors all play videos of fish. Thank God he's not afraid of fish!

Everything checked out OK! The dentist tried to tell me to stay away from candy, cookies, and juice. It's OK, you can laugh too.

Afterwards I decided to run with the theme and head back to the Invertebrate House at the National Zoo in time for the giant octopus feeding. Look at how cute he is!!!!

He was very taken with the jellyfish.

And the octopus feeding was brief, but very fun to watch.

Then we just walked around, and finally visited the soft play area in the form of a giant pizza. If you're looking for him, Joseph is the butt sticking out of the enormous olive. After our recent road trip, he's fascinated with anything and everything that even remotely reminds him of a tunnel.

Have you noticed anything in common about most of the pictures of him standing? Another new thing - his hand is always in his pocket. Here he is after our swim class last week. I just had to stop in the hall to catch it.

When you ask "What's in your pocket?" he replies "A quacka." Which we assume means "a cracker" (one of his favorite food groups), but it sounds exactly the same when he says "a tractor." We usually know which he means in context, but this one's a mystery.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Bye George!

We were so busy relaxing and enjoying each other's company at the lake that we realized there was still so much more we wanted to do before we left. Our last day was action packed, starting with a visit to Fort Ticonderoga, built in the 1700's alongside Lake Champlain. Many different canons, very cool architecture, lots of history to digest.

One last visit to Gull Bay beach, so Joseph could enjoy the sand and surf.

One of my favorite pictures from the whole trip came from the last day. You can just tell Joseph has been having the time of his life:

While he napped we were determined to sneak away and finally get to kyack on the lake. The sights were gorgeous from the new perspective on the water, but I was too afraid to get my camera wet, so I left it on the shore.

One last "5 o'clock nosh," this time out on the boat in a serene spot called Dark Bay.

On the way home we stopped in the Hudson Valley again to break up the trip. Back in Hyde Park, we went to the Culinary Institute of America, the country's most respected cooking school. If I had been able to plan the trip, I would have spent most of it here taking seminars and workshops. But alas, we only stopped for lunch, at the Apple Pie Bakery Cafe. Delish.

Here is how Joseph would have spent the entire trip (other than in the water) - pushing around this stroller. I bought this lightweight umbrella stroller to travel with, and the second he sees it, even folded up, he starts chanting "Push! Push!" Sometimes it's easier just to let him do it, but he refuses to let you steer, so if you ever see him coming, RUN!

We then drove on to my parents' house in Jersey and stayed with them for the last leg of the trip. Joe Joe got to see both sets of grandparents in the same day - priceless. AND, he got Grammy's spaghetti and meatballs for dinner. Lucky boy!

The "CHEEEEEEESE" face persists!