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Monday, November 1, 2010
Can't believe it has been so long since I last posted. September and October were extremely busy with parties, weddings, soccer and fall activites.

We had a Halloween celebration week with several parties, a book character parade, ZooBoo and of course Trick or Treating. Here are some pictures.

Back to School

Friday, September 10, 2010

Yes, I am still trying to catch up with all the recent happenings.

School started for the girls on August 30th. Abby started Kindergarten and Emma is in 1st grade. Abby had a gradual entrance week and didn't have a full day until Friday. Emma had a great first week. I can't get over how serious 1st grade is and how much she will learn. There are several kids in her class that she knows from Kindergarten and her teacher seems really nice. Hoping she has a great year.

Abby got to ride the bus for the first time on Friday (her 1st full day). She was so excited. I did better this year then a last...if you are a regular reader you will remember that I followed the school bus last year on Emma's 1st day and watched for her to get off (click here to read that blog post). This year I DID NOT follow the school bus. I felt more comfortable about her riding the bus: her big sister was there with her, she knew several other kids, we know the bus driver and I know the routine when she gets off the bus. What I did do was drive to the school and park out front. I waited for the bus to arrive and wanted to make sure she made it to the correct line. Shortly after I pulled up Sean pulled up behind me....BUSTED. Then as the bus pulled into the driveway Emma and Abby both spotted us and started waving...BUSTED AGAIN!!!! I am happy to report Abby made it safely into school.

The hardest part was the realization that my "baby" is growing up. What I also realized is that having two children so close in age, they will be doing everything back to back and time is going to fly by. I held myself together as Abby got on the bus but as soon as I got in the car I cried. Where has the time gone, she looked so big getting on that bus, I can't see the baby in her anymore...all of these thoughts were going through my head and as the tears ran down my face.

I am very proud of how well she has done so far. I know it will be a busy year and hope I can keep up with them.

Summer To-Do List

Thursday, September 9, 2010

So at the beginning of summer we made of list of activities we wanted to do over the summer. When I first proposed this to the girls I was afraid their wishes would be outrageous (ex. Disney). But I was shocked....most of what they wanted to do was FREE. Some of their ideas were going to the playground, playing in the back yard and playing with friends. I was glad they were happy with the cheap and day-to-day activities.
So as a family we came up with our Summer To-Do-List. I put it in a picture frame to display and so we could use a dry-erase marker to check off the activities as we did them. Here are some of the activities we came up with and actually did this summer:

* have a picnic

* see Toy Story 3

* go to a street concert

* go to a beach

* family movie night

* join the library summer reading program

* visit a new playground

* visit the zoo

* visit Aunt Gail

* watch fireworks

* go to the 4th of July Parade

* complete the summer challenge from school

...and a few others. If you notice most are free or very cheap.

As you can see we had a busy summer including a 2 day trip to Hershey Park (that's why I didn't blog much over the summer). We completed everything on the to-do list except for ice skating...hoping to do that soon.
Now that summer vacation is officially over and we are back in school we are planning our fall activities.

Frugal but Fun Fourth of July

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Having fun with your family doesn't have to be expensive. With many people including us trying to spend less these days finding fun but cheap activities are a must. This past weekend the four of us managed to have a fun filled weekend by just spending.......Let me show you what we did first.

Friday (the girls' daycare was closed so we had a 4 day weekend)
***Zoo - including a ride on the new Jones Falls Zephyr Train

***4th of July Parade
Local beach

Swimming at the pool
4th of July Fireworks

***Eclipse (movie time just for Me)
Pool (Sean and the girls)
Much needed rest

We were exhausted after the weekend but not broke. So how much do you think we spent????

So here is the breakdown:

Zoo - have a membership (paid for itself after 1 1/2 visits) = $0 out of pocket on Friday for admission
Train ride $2 per person = $6
Parade - FREE
Beach - $3 per person (kids in safety seats FREE) = $6
Movies - more expensive than I had expected; had to go to a more expensive theater for an early showing = $32
Pool - have a membership (will explain this in another post) = FREE
Fireworks = FREE
Movies (Eclipse) - $6 admission + $8 popcorn and soda = $14
Pool = FREE
Rest = FREE

Not too bad for a 4 day weekend for 4 people!!!!! We are good about packing lunches when we go to the pool, beach and zoo.
Hope everyone enjoyed their Indepenence weekend...we did!!!!

Checking in...

Tuesday, June 8, 2010
So Abby's Birthday week continued with her Pre-School Graduation. There is nothing cuter than 20 some kids with a cap and tassel singing their little hearts out. I hadn't really thought about it much until I was sitting there realizing she has accomplished another milestone and is moving onto a new chapter of her life...that is when Mommy started crying. My baby is becoming such a little lady.

Then on Saturday we continued to celebrate Abby's Birthday with a Fancy Nancy party for her friends followed by a family get together (pictures are in reverse order).

As Abby says, "I'm all the fingers on my hand!!!"
Lots more to update on you....like the leak in the upstairs bathroom that has created havoc on our life the past week and a half. Will be back soon with lots of pictures.

Birthday Celebration

Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Abby's 5th Birthday started off with donuts for breakfast, requested by the Birthday Girl of course. Then unfortunately we had to work so she went to school, but not empty handed.....she took chocolate chip cookies to celebrate her birthday with her friends. Then for dinner she asked for French Toast and bacon. Abby loves bacon and almost ate it all, Sean and I were able to snag a few pieces!!!! Our neighbors, Zoey, Kira, Steve and Jess came down to help sing and eat cake...the flip flop cake, homemade by Mommy and Daddy. Then nothing better than a little bike riding with your sister and friends to end a great day. This is a week long celebration for Abby....Friday is graduation from Pre-School and Saturday is the friend party followed by the family party!!!!
Happy Birthday to my sweet baby girl.

5 Candles!!!

Monday, May 24, 2010
Time Flies....how many times in your life have you heard this saying? Not until recently did I truely understand the meaning.

Just 5 short years ago my BABY was born. She was perfect and she completed our family. Today she turns FIVE!!!!

She is full of energy and life. She loves to sing, fight with her big sister and eat her mac n cheese. She has clothing issues usually on a daily basis. She gives the best hugs. She has the most beautiful smile and can make some of the silliest faces.

She will graduate from Pre-school on Friday and start Kindergarten in August. She is growing up way to fast. My how TIME FLIES.....

Happy Birthday Abby!!!

Mommy, Daddy & Emma

What I have learned....

Saturday, May 8, 2010

about being a MOM.

* the best artwork is the art you kids make at school and you display on the frig

* you can NEVER get enough hugs and kisses

* the love you have for your children is like no other

* you pick your battles(rain boots with a pretty dress when it is NOT raining is OK)

* sometimes Mommies need a "time out"
* laughing can make almost anything better

* I love to check on my girls before I go to bed and watch them sleep.

* you can NEVER take toooo many pictures of your kids

* the littlest boo-boo is the biggest deal to a child

* seeing my girls after working all day is the highlight of my day

* the DRAMA can be out of control sometimes

* too much quiet ususally means trouble

* Mommy's kisses don't alway make everything better

* being a Mom IT IS HARDER than I EVER THOUGHT

* there are not enough hours in a day to do all you wish you could do with your kids.

* chicken nuggets, mac and cheese and pizza are sometimes they only things they will eat

* everytime I look at my kids I realize they are growing up WAY TOOOOO FAST

* Mommies don't always have the answers
* laundry and cleaning are NOT as important as having fun with your kids
* giggling kids are music to my ears
* using your imagination is the best "toy" EVER

* listening to my kids sing is the best music I've ever heard

* reading with your child opens up an endless world

* eating dinner as a family is priceless


This list could go on forever. I would love to hear the most important thing you have learned from being a Mom....leave me a comment.

Happy Mother's Day to all the Moms.

Bubbles & Peanuts

Sunday, May 2, 2010
Now that is a combination!!! Yesterday evening, while sitting on the deck, Emma was blowing bubbles and Abby was breaking open peanut shells with a crab mallet. Just had to share...her are some pictures:

Tis the Season....

Monday, April 26, 2010
to Flea Market!!!! I love this time of year....everyone is cleaning house and getting rid of all their junk. You know the saying, "One person's junk is another person's treasure." I think in the past several years there has been a resurgance of flea marketing, maybe due to the economy or due to the effort to recycle and reuse.

This weekend was a big weekend for community yard sales. Craigslist has a catagory for Garage Sales and that is where I have been finding the hot spots. I hit two of them and several individual ones on Saturday and here are my finds:

I put the side table in Emma's room for a night stand - matched the color of her furniture perfectly. $5
Have a plan for the picture frame - will post pictures when the project is complete. $.25

I have NEVER liked our dining room light and have been looking for something to replace it - I think I will paint it black to match the room better and get some shades. $5

Looking forward to my next outing and finding some treasures!!!!

Spring Fling

Monday, April 12, 2010
One of the blogs I follow: Tip Junkie, is having giveaways ALL day tomorrow. Check it out.

Outdoor Eating

Sunday, April 11, 2010
This time of year we take full advantage of the weather and eat outside as much as possible. Some weekends we will eat every meal outside. I love my deck and yard, however it is not my "dream" space. I would love something more like these.

A girl can dream!!!!!!!

Happy Easter

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Hope everyone had a wonderful day with family and friends.