Sunday, June 27, 2010

New Do

Super short. Super cute!

Saturday, June 26, 2010


Suddenly I've started to find piles of books in and around JT's bed after nap, in the morning, or when I go to check on him before I go to bed. They weren't there when I put him down, which means it took him about 4 months of being in the big bed to finally realize that he could get out on his own instead of waiting for me to come get him. And he's gotten sneaky about it too, since he can do it without us hearing him on the monitor! Luckily there's still plenty of room to roll around and find a comfortable spot when he finally decides to catch some z's.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Boot Camp

Joseph has seriously been ready to potty train for a long time. We just never decided when to take the plunge. But when our nanny requested some vacation time, we found ourselves faced with 6 consecutive days off with him. We knew it was now or never, so yesterday was Day 1 in big boy undies. No diapers except for sleepy time and we're not bothering with pull-ups. We're talking potty boot camp here.

Not bad yesterday: 1 initial flood in the morning, and 2 minor sprinklings early afternoon.

Today: bone dry!!
Which called for a trip to Gifford's for some chocolate marshmallow ice cream after dinner.

Tomorrow I have to work. May the force be with Papa.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Father's Day Presents

Every year for Father's Day Joseph seems to be able to sneak out to the bookstore and buy a little something for each of us.

He has it pretty easy when it comes to me - there's a thousand books out there about daddies. But finding books about papas must be on the challenging side for him. I know I haven't seen too many out there..... How amazing that he found not 1 but TWO books about papas that are pirates!

I consider my real gift the trip to this place:

Zook's has got to be the be all and end all of fabric stores for quilters - but it's located in the middle of Amish country, in a town very oddly named Intercourse. I just might have found out (through the world's best travel agent, my man Brent) that the "Day Out With Thomas" event was actually right down the road about 10 miles from Zook's. A little something for Joe Joe, a little something for me! Brent knows how to take care of us!

Sooooo much to choose from, my head was about to explode! Just the variety of solids was enough to boggle the mind. But I went with a plan and was able to focus, and left with a nice little stack of fabrics, all with special purposes in mind. Who know if there's something in there for you?! May not look like much, but there's over TEN yards of fabric there, for a seriously good price.

Despite dragging me to a hundred gardens and garden shows as well as planning this trip to my fabric mecca, Brent still somehow managed to escape spending any time actually in the fabric store with me. He took Joseph to the petting zoo. Have I mentioned Joseph's obsession with "Tingalayo?" You know that song: "come little donkey, come?" There he was!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Father's Day with Thomas

No, we haven't changed Joseph's name. We all spent yesterday visiting the railroad station in Strasburg, PA for a meet and greet with everyone's favorite little blue steam engine.

If you're not in the know (or don't have a 3 year old boy), "Day Out With Thomas" is a traveling "celebration tour" (who wrote that??) where the kids get to see and ride on a life-sized Thomas the Tank Engine. We've been talking this up for weeks, and oh boy... Joseph. Was. EXCITED!

We drove up the day before, and every 2 seconds was like "I'm gonna see Thomas?" We did encourage it, though. Thomas clothes. Thomas movies. Thomas books before bed. It's amazing he could sleep.

We got there pretty early and were lucky to run into Sir Topham Hatt when there wasn't much of a crowd. It's kinda like sitting on Santa's lap - always sounds like a dream come true but never sure if your kid is going to just FREAK OUT. Joesph was hesitant at 1st sight, but he gave a little handshake...

even leaned in for a hug...

and was happy as a clam! Maybe we will get a decent pic with Santa this year!

we got to watch Thomas pull in and out of the station a few times..

and then it was our turn to ride on the passenger coaches!

They do this "Day Out" thing in Baltimore, which is a lot closer for us, but we hear the scenery is a little sketchy. It Strasburg it's corn....

a little farm...

more corn....just delightful!

Of course you have to check out all the Thomas propaganda in the gift shops and come home with a T-shirt, new movie, new train for the train table at home, official picture with Thomas, a few temporary tattoos.

But all good things must come to an end, and we had to say "Bye Bye" to Thomas and head home.

Never fear - he's coming back again in the Fall!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Oh, Mighty Isis!

Oh, this is one of those things I never got around to posting.

About a month and a half ago we decided to let our Sunday morning Gymboree class go. We loved it so much, but it really just ran it's course. Joseph just seemed to be getting too old for it. Funny to say that about a kid who's not even 3 yet!

Our "teacher" was Miss Isis, who came in as a rookie when Joseph was already a regular. She quickly worked her way into Joseph's heart, and he always looked forward to seeing her over the next year or so that we stayed on. I could never say her name without thinking of that show I used watch in the 70's (along with "Shazam!") about the woman who found this magical Egyptian amulet that let her call on random mystical goddess superpowers like flying. OK - was that just me?

Hard to believe, no more bubbles :(

Well, it was fun while it lasted, and we're on to bigger and better things (like play dates with all the other kids whose parents also think they "aged out"). But this is how it ended, and it's hard to believe we pulled the plug on something he still seemed to enjoy so much:

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Easy as pie

In anticipation of our very special dinner guest last night, Joseph and I set out to make something for dessert. Brent wanted something "summery" and suggested key lime pie. How easy is that? This time we kicked it up Emeril style from his "Potluck" cookbook. I forgot how excited Joseph is to squeeze (and lick) limes.

Pressing the graham cracker crust into the pie pan was so much fun for him. They say clean hands are a cook's best tool!

And since we had to clean the hands again after that mess, I let him try out the filling. What's not to like?

Our dinner guest was Uncle Mike (for those of you not in the know, that's my nephew Michael and niece Sami's dad), who was in town for a conference.

We don't get to see him often enough, and it was great to spend time together catching up. Joseph loved him (as well as the trucks and books he brought from Sami). This morning when I asked Joseph if he had a good time with Uncle Mike, he said "He's a nice man." Later on in the day he said "Mr. Mike's a good man" after I reminded him that Uncle Mike brought the Thomas books he was reading. Indeed, Mike is a great guy, and he helps me stay close with my fantastic nephew and niece. We hope he comes back to visit often!

Where my girls at?

Thought we were done with pics from Destin? Not on your life! Here's a great one of me with 2 very wonderful and beautiful women I'm lucky to have in my life, Olga and Suthern, my mother-in-law and sister-in-law.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


I'm sure that word brings to mind a character from "Happy Days" to most people, but in DC it's an acronym for "Friends Of the National Zoo." Joseph and I were looking for something exciting to due on our own on Tuesday since Jack is in preschool camp for the month, so we spent the day at the Zoo and decided to become Friends. In addition to free parking and some other perks, you get a giant panda cuddle toy for signing up. I think that's intentionally misleading - it's not a giant cuddle toy, it's a cuddle toy of a giant panda. Big difference:

It was a banner day for animal entertainment - the big cats were all out, the elephants were in the yard, the entire monkey clan was playing outside, even the little baby.

A favorite stop is always the invertebrate house - basically a small aquarium. The giant octopus put on a great show during feeding time! This time Joseph took note of the "crayfish." I think we honorary Louisianians prefer "crawfish."

Undoubtedly the funnest part was visiting the small mammal house. Those meerkats know how to entertain a crowd!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Conversations with Poppy

I know, not terribly exciting footage, but it shows how Joe Joe is in a major Poppy phase right now. For the past week or so he'll run screaming from the room if we ask him to say "hi" to Mimi or Grammy on the phone or on Skype, but he'll grab the phone out of your hand and settle down to talk to Poppy about anything and nothing - Thomas the train and Sir Topham Hatt, his upcoming birthday party, his cousin Leyton, and liking strawberries. But we all know, a toddler's whims change on a daily basis.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Sweet Caroline

I mentioned Caroline's birthday party in the last post - here's a little more from that.

Someone mentions cake. He cranes his neck to see.

He pushes his way to through the crowd to be front and center. The birthday girl (in the green hat) is even a little off to the side.

He helps blow out the candles. (But look, they all did! Even Marty from behind him.)

Hooray for Caroline. And hooray for cake!

Saturday, June 5, 2010


After a week at the beach, I had personally had enough of being in the water. Joseph, on the other hand, would willingly get wet hourly. And that's just what our friends here at home had in mind.

Sweet Caroline, from our Thursday morning music class, invited us to her dolphin themed 2nd birthday party, which was all about getting wet. Joe Joe was in the kiddie pool in seconds. He was a little apprehensive of the sprinkler at 1st, but when his buddy Marty showed him it was OK, he dove in, literally head first.

Jack had big plans for us too, with a big blow up pool and a hose to boot. I don't know where Jack gets all that energy from, nor how Missy keeps up with him! But Joseph generally naps hard after play dates like this, so no complaints from me!

Of course cutie patootie Will was in on the action too with his own bucket of water to splash in. Can't you just eat him up?!