Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Big Kids

I'm not sure I understand all the implications of climate change and global warming but we were sure lucky to have a run of the most amazing weather around the Thanksgiving weekend. We met up with the McCaffrey brothers for a park & pizza playdate on Saturday morning. Jon William is older than Simon by a year, and their height difference looks about right. Joseph in turn is older than Jon William by a year, but something looks a little off, no? My kid is a giant!

Speaking of big kids, turns out J.W. & SySy's dad Mark is one as well. Every time I see him he has a new toy helicopter to play with.

He still needs a little practice with the remote control, though.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving Traditions

Use my grandmother's china.

Prepping, cooking, carving, I'm in charge of the bird.

Caramel pecan tart. Brent insists.

There's also a traditional Thanksgiving feast at Joseph's preschool (which followed the performance from the last post).

I made the cute little pilgrim hat treats after seeing my friend Missy make them for Jack's preschool. So easy! Made from marshmallows and Keebler cookies. Melt some chocolate, dunk a marshmallow, press it down onto the back of the cookie and let them set. Pipe on a frosting buckle and they're done.

Hope everyone had a great holiday!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

We Are Thankful

From Joseph's preschool Thanksgiving feast and performance. We ARE thankful, for this and more.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Tiger Stadium, DC

One of the gagillion projects we've done since buying our house was finishing off the basement a few years ago. At the time we passed on the built-ins our architect had suggested for the media room and just repurposed some existing furniture.

About a year ago our combined TiVo/DVD player broke and in its place came fiber optic high definition cable with a DVR (FiOS) and a blu ray DVD player. We finally realized all that technology was a waste with our old clunker of a TV, but a new flat screen wouldn't fit in the armoire. So:

Our contractor did an amazing job, but then I was left wrestling with all the wires to reconnect the audio-visual equipment and surround sound. Every little wire was painstakingly labeled with "to" and "from" instructions, and I took digital pictures of all the connections too just in case.

Amazingly everything seems to work! Quite the undertaking just because our TiVo broke, but now we have the perfect spot to watch whatever you're in the mood for. Around here that tends to be Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Thomas & Friends, and

LSU Football. Geaux Tigers!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


Our second birthday party of the weekend was for Joseph's preschool friend Brianna, whose mom put together a "chef-tastic" event at the Italian Pizza Kitchen on Connecticut Ave. The kids got aprons and rolling pins, a primer on pizza making with a brief demo, and then it was hands on.

Notice how at 4 there's already a "boys table." Weird.
We got a few compliments on our perfect crust. What do you expect from a detail oriented Italian dad?

Crust, sauce, cheese, pepperoni. Just about every kid's perfect meal.

The kids all had a blast! This was such a creative and fun idea for a birthday party. But boy, we left some kind of mess behind.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Mad Science

Our friend and neighbor Luca had a cool science themed party on Saturday for his 5th birthday. Lots of fun experiments with dry ice and gooey things.

Joseph was happy to watch rather than volunteer as a lab assistant, but he participated fully once it came to cake and playground activities.

Happy birthday, Luca! We had a great time!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Big Red

This tree, this color - just about my favorite thing about fall.

(Thanks for being in the picture, JT. You're my favorite thing in the world!)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

School Portrait 2011

Mr. Blue Eyes, adorable as can be! Decided to only order the "head shot." The awkward poses with the cheesy backdrop were just too ridiculous.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Georgetown Waterfront Park

The area along the Potomac River in Georgetown had been an unused concrete parking lot for the entire time I've lived in DC until relatively recently, when it was renovated and given new life as a public park. Rather than ride up and down the block for the millionth time, we took Joseph and his bike down to the waterfront on Sunday. HO. LY. MO. LY. It is fantastic!

The view spans from the Kennedy Center and Washington Monument down to the Key Bridge and across to Roosevelt Island. Walkways curve all along the Potomac River and there are spots to stop with benches, pergolas, beautiful overlooks, and wide open green spaces. There are steps down to the river where you can watch crew races, and fountains that are on in warmer weather. It is just incredibly well done.

Joseph had a field day riding back and forth on the paths. He is a speed demon.

He also loved going around and around this labyrinth (which is supposed to be some kind of all-access sacred place to foster the development of the human spirit. That was lost on him. And us.).

After stowing the bike in the car we crossed over the C&O Canal (site of my 1st 5K a few months ago) for a snack at Dean & Deluca and some quick shopping in Georgetown.

Such a lovely day! Can't wait to see how the park changes with the seasons. I also just might have to bring my running gear sometime and go on a little adventure of my own.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


I had the past 5 days in a row off from work, and dang if it didn't just zip by faster than I could have imagined. But we did a ton of fun things so at least I can't complain that we have zip to show for it.

(photo from Ethan's birthday party at our weekly hotspot, Kidville Bethesda)

Saturday, November 12, 2011


There was a time we were tossing around the idea of spending this long weekend in New York City, but that somehow just.....fizzled out. Instead we utilized our aquarium membership and spent the afternoon yesterday as a family in Baltimore. We got there just in time for the beginning of one of our favorites, the dolphin show. It never gets old!

Given his Halloween costume this year, we figured JT would be all about the sharks, but when asked what he wanted to see, he was absolutely fixated on the octopus.

I can understand, it's pretty cool to watch. And I'm always amused by that poorly worded sign. It's not like it's the New Orleans aquarium. Who's gonna flash an octopus?

Nemo was hiding very well, but this time around we discovered our friend Verdi, the green tree python in the book of the same name by Janell Cannon (who also wrote "Stellaluna).

On our way out we passed through the Australia exhibit got a great view of the 35 foot waterfall from high up. Thanks to daylight savings time it was completely dark when we left, and from outside you can really appreciate the beauty of the multi-story glass addition that houses the replica of an Australian river gorge.

We stopped at The Cheesecake Factory right across the street for dinner before the drive home. And there was a wait, of course. At 5:30pm. Was it wrong to have fried calamari after spending the day at the aquarium? Oh, but yum! As was the "ultimate red velvet cake cheesecake" that we split for dessert. JT was SO excited for it, and the waiter even surprised him with a candle!