Beautiful Life

Hey child up and go; A big world is out there waiting for us to live in every day. Outside you will find, there is love all around you; Takes you, makes you wanna' say; That it's a beautiful life and it's a beautiful world and it's a beautiful time to be here, to be here, to be here. -Fisher

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Dancing the Night Away

This post is also called:  The Best Daddies In The World

Because that is what it takes to attend a Father-Daughter Dance!  This night has been a long time coming in Isabel's opinion.  In fact, the last one she attended was in 2007, I believe.  Not because a particular Daddy didn't want to take her, but because said Daddy's work schedule called him to Indiana for a sales meeting each year ....on that date.  Thankfully the two functions did not collide this year! Because I'm not sure Paul could have handled one more year of guilt.  You know how those little girls can pile it on, and all they really have to do is look up at you with those sad puppy eyes, full to the brim with an un-shed tear.  Last year he had to take her to an expensive Italian restaurant to make up for it!  An Italian restaurant he hasn't even taken me too yet! 


Daddy with his two little princesses! 

Isabel ready for her special night.  Oh, isn't she beautiful?  Yes, I spent an hour curling her hair this afternoon.  What?  Her hair isn't curly?  No kidding!  That would be because SHE CHANGED HER MIND.  Oh, yes she did.  And I?  I spent an hour straightening it too!  And, poor child.  She lost another tooth.  In the front.  Fell right out in the middle of the night....'cause you know this kid doesn't pull her own teeth no. matter. how. loose.  So she has a very holey mouth for these pictures.  Still cute!

Claire declined to pose for her picture.  She "hates wearing a dress!".  And so, you know.  That was fun. 

This year he tag-teamed with two other dads.  'Cause you in numbers, right?  Three dads and 5 daughters in one Ford Excursion.  I would have loved being a fly on that rear view mirror!  Incidentally, my husband drooled all over our friend's truck......because that is his dream familymobile right now.  Sorry Stacy and Steve.  The man can't help himself, what can I say?

The Gang! 

Clearly, Daddy's photography skillz are lacking in this area.  But, at least I can tell that the kids were having a blast!  And, at least he took pictures at all.  I know a few dads with less than thrilled wives due to the lack of phototagiousness going on.  No, that is not even a word, people! 

I was a little worried about Claire.  She didn't really want to go. Besides the whole "I hate dresses!" thingy.....she asked questions that made it clear that she was stressing about this event.  Things like "what if I get lost from Daddy?"  We talked a lot about how things would go so she would feel more comfortable.  But, it was just one of those things she was going to have to experience before she'd fully understand that it was fun.  And clearly, she got the point!  I was so glad to see that happy smile! 

And, she hung out with friends other than her sister!  Friends like Stephanie here.

And her buddy Grace from Our Red Thread Journey!  I'm not sure where Moli is, but I have a handful of pictures of Claire and Grace dancing!

Dancing The Night Away!

And while this was going on, Stacy (mom to two of the daughters in the gang) and I took our boys out to eat and then hung out waiting on the return of our daughters and hubbies.  Then about 8:30 Stacy gets a text from her hubby. 

Steve:  How long do we have to stay???
Stacy:  Until the bitter end!
Steve:  But the food is all gone!

And now we know why they go!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Party Over Here!

Claire and her precious friend, Moli, of Our Red Thread Journey, hosted their first ever Chinese New Year party today!  Maybe there will be a second annual party next year!  What do you think, Tara?  Moli's mom, Tara was in charge of the crafts.  That was a big job!  She came up with some cute ones.

I thought it was too much fun!  And, a lot of hectic.  But, I like hectic!  What can I say?  The more children packed into my house, the more to be thankful for, right?   Full hands = happiness in my book.

My girls spent days getting ready for the party.  And, had a ton of fun. 

I don't know about you, but we call this school!

And this?  That's called A-dor-able!

After all the prep work.....our friends arrived!  YAY!  Claire kept asking me, "when will my friends be here?"  And of course, once they got here....

She was stuck to me like duck tape!  The boys did all the photography for me today.  Therefore, there were actually about six pictures similar to this one.  You know....with her hand on my pocket as I walked around. I'd made the mistake of telling the boys to make sure and get lots of photos of Isabel and Claire, because I won't put other people's kids on my blog....unless they gave permission.   So yeah.  We have loads of photos of whatever Claire was hanging onto my apron strings derrière. But, I figured you'd appreciate NOT having to see numerous pictures of my BUTT!  

You're welcome.

How crazy was it?

We split the kids into two groups of about nine.  I read stories and did a cooking activity with each group.  Tara did crafts with each group.  It went well! 

And looked a little busy!

Okay, a lot busy! So busy in fact that the only pictures the boys got of Tara, she's a blur! 

But, look at these cute crafty things!  Happy year of the tiger, people!
(that's my tiger growl.....if you didn't know)

My kids had a super fun time.  I think all the kids did! 

More paper lanterns! 

We served homemade dumplings and they were scrumptious.  Said the kids, because I totally did not wolf down like 10 of them standing in the kitchen while they cooked.  Nope.  Not me!  Because that would just be yummy selfish!

Isabel helped!

Sweet rice balls. 
Very interesting.

That's all I'll say about that.

Okay, you twisted my arm!
They taste like rice flavored gummy bears in sugar water.
Appetizing, no?

But, they are a traditional dish for the Lantern Festival. 
So, we had to try them, right?

Not surprisingly......some of the children liked them.
 Well, it was made with loads of sugar. 
Which explains a lot. 

Me?  Not so much.

I'll stick with the pot stickers!

Who is that captivating all 18 children while I scramble around in the kitchen trying to get enough dumplings steamed to serve to those kiddos? It's bird!  It's a plane!  Heck no.  It's the best husband! in! the! world! Period. 

Now you see why we have so many kids?  And why he says we should have another one?  And why I don't argue with him about it?

Jie Jie Isabel, Jie Jie Grace, Mei Mei Claire, Mei Mei Moli

Gong Xi Fa Cai!
From our house to yours,
have a happy and prosperous new year!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Just Enough Time...

For a few pictures!

Taken this morning before church.

Goofy.  Like father, like daughter!

Claire is not crazy about her new hat, but Mama thinks it is super cute! 

Friday, February 19, 2010

What do you do?

When you are "snowed in" and then you lose power for 16 hours? I use the words snowed in very loosely here. I mean, are you really snowed in when you only get 3 inches of snow??? Well, in South Carolina....that'd be a yes. At least for the night. So first we resorted to this....

The children became palates for Lizzie's creative juices. Not that face paint is her first choice of art supply.....or second! So how'd this make the short list of "activites for a snowy night"? I got one word for you.....Isabel.


After having a sweet little butterfly applied to her face, Claire requested a mustache and beard? Yep. 'Cause she's special that way, that's why.

Isabel morphed into a Dalmatian. You know Isabel....she goes for the big effect! No little cheeky picture for her face. No way. More is more......and the messier, the better.

And somehow? The boys got talked into sitting. They were given no choices. Just told to sit.

That is just a little too weird for words if you ask me. Apparently, it's from some movie?

Son, when are you going to learn not to trust her? She showcased you in dresses and tiaras when you were 4 years old. Did you think she'd be any less cruel now?? Did you? She's paying you back for all the times you tossed your pacifier into the back seat of the van and hit her square in the forehead!

Not Noah too!
I liked my mohawk idea better!

I have to hand it to them, they could care less what other's think. Shortly after this, the snow started coming down pretty hard and all the kids took off into the neighborhood to play. My boys? Did they hide in the house or run for the Noxzema? Nope. They took off into the night....looking like that! They played in the snow for about an hour before coming in. By then, they really looked creepy. They had blue and red paint running down their faces. Half on, half off!

Our usual Friday plans do involve electricity. Which was in short supply from about 9pm on! What ever did we do that night?

Played our new favorite game of course!
We had the best the semi darkness of candlelight!
Boys against Girls and Girls ROCKED!

I'm married to a goofball!
Paul accepted his first Academy Award for the night.

As did Lizzie.

In case you are feeling like you missed out. Enjoy these....ummmm....acceptance videos?

See what I have to live with!

Feel free to pity me.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Best Day!

On top of the wonderful weekend we had, a day that Claire has been looking forward to finally arrived.  Claire has wanted new shoes since we bought the boys some new ones back at the end of summer.  Unfortunately for Claire, Tar-zhay and Wally World do not carry shoes that you can cram the likes of an AFO into! And shoes that you can wear with AFOs?  Well those babies are not cheap.  So she had to wait until she outgrew her AFOs.  Which she did back in November.  Then she had to wait on her Mama to make her an appointment with Mr. Jim.  Mr. Jim is her orthotist. 

We saw Mr. Jim a few weeks ago and he casted her for her new AFOs.  Which, come with shoes!   Yesterday we went to pick them up. 

An old one and a new one.  See how much she's grown! 

Nasty ole worn out old shoes!

Brand spankin' new shoes with shoelaces, y'all!

Shoelaces were very exciting!

She may actually have a fetish. 

I'm just sayin'.

'Cause she is in love with these shoes!

And could not wait to get them one those tootsies!

Mr. Jim got her in them as fast as he could!

I asked Claire what she thought of them when she got down to walk. 
She said, "they are awesome!"