Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Gracie has been scared of Santa Claus for as long as I can remember.  I think she may even have cried when he held her at 3 months old.  She's refused to go near him.  I've had to Photoshop her into Santa pictures.  It's not like she has to like him, but I've always hoped to get those classic family photos of Gracie and Lukie with Santa.

Thankfully, the early onslaught of Christmas shows has made Santa not quite as frightening.  Gracie has been curious about him and when she and I talked about him this year, I assured her that she did not have to sit on his lap.  I told her she could just stand next to him and that would be fine.  Some how, though, this Santa, the real Santa, convinced Gracie to sit on his lap. 

She looked like she might leap off at any second, but she stayed on his lap long enough to get this picture.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Things that make me happy

Children who are so aware of life around them, they create their own parking lot.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

We are 4!

On Gracie and Lukie's first day in the Big Kid Room at pre-school, we had to make sure that everyone knew they were 4.  Four is a magical age, you see.  You are BIG now and you can do all kinds of things by yourself.

So advertising is necessary.

We went with our 4th Birthday shirts.  I think it is pretty obvious that they are 4.

Their new backpacks are bigger than they are.  But they were so excited when they saw these things!

Transformers for Lukie and Hello Kitty for Gracie.

I love 4.  So do Gracie and Lukie.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Our goals before we're 4

Gracie and Luke are just a few days away from their fourth birthday. A month or so ago, the three of us set some goals to be met before their birthday.
1. That they would choose their clothes and dress themselves.
2. Fasten their seat belts by themselves.
3. Wipe their own booties effectively.
I have to say that I am very proud of them! They have almost hit all three completely. They only have to master the third one. The cool part is that they almost have it down.
Gracie and Luke are beyond excited for their birthday. They have every reason to be: they aren't babies any more!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Our Michael Jackson craze

At the beginning of the summer, Gracie and Lukie's teacher mentioned how much they liked the hip hop class on Thursdays.  There was a new session starting and the teacher had invited Gracie to participate.  Apparently, Gracie was all over dance class.  She sashayed and jumped and had some serious rhythm.  I looked at the price of the class and almost choked.

However, after a sibling discount (who hoo) and two very excited kids, I found the money hiding in my savings account to make hip hop class a reality for them.  I'm so glad I did it!  Not only are they having a blast, but they are discovering music that we haven't introduced them to.  I can do without Justin Bieber and the Baja Men, but they've absolutely fallen in LOVE with Michael Jackson.  So much so, that we have spent several hours watching videos and dancing to Michael Jackson songs.  I burned CDs with their favorite songs on them and they are what we listen to in the car.  They love to sing "Beat It", "Black or White", "Smooth Criminal", and "Bad."  They are also discovering "The Girl is Mine."  They love hearing the stories of Michael Jackson from when Aunt Bec and I were little.  Lukie is excited about dancing like him and keeps practicing his Moon Walk.

Lukie's dancin' moves:

He loves dancing like Michael Jackson so much that he even dancing to MJ in the car:

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Where have 8 months gone?

Have you ever sat down, taken a deep breath, and wondered "What happened with the last several months?"  I'm sitting here looking at my blog and wondering that very thing.  My last post was 8 months ago.  Some how, life has taken over and all kinds of memories are being lost to the passage of time.  I have a horrible memory and I know that there are things that have happened over the last several months that will be lost.

Luckily, I have some pictures and videos to spark some memories.  Starting tomorrow, I'm going to start going back and posting them in their correct months.  There are things like Gracie and Lukie's first Tamale Day and their obsession with Michael Jackson.  It's some good stuff.  Trust me.

So here's my promise.  Check back tomorrow.  There will be some good stuff!  Until then...

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Taking a Trip to the Zoo

We've taken quite a few trips to the Zoo, but I have to admit that a trip with almost 4-year-olds is really fun.  They can do more for themselves and they aren't scared of everything.  Our most recent trip was our first day out with a healthy Daddy.

Gracie and Lukie touched a python skin, a rattle snake skin, and Gracie, my brave girl, petted a guinea pig.  We were seriously enchanted by the Children's Zoo.  I don't know how we've managed to skip that part of the Zoo over the past few years, but we will definitely be going back.

Gracie and Luke kept wanting to look through the telescopes.  Next time, I need to make sure I have money for them!

For some reason, there was also a lot of eating.  Daddy, Gracie, and Luke packed a "goodie" bag.  Lukie packed fruit.  Gracie packed BBQ sauce chips.  You can see where their priorities are.

Lukie loves fruit and nectarines are one of his favorite fruits!

Yeah, I'm tough.

Thanks for the SEE food, Lukie!

Look at these eyes!  How can you say No to them???

Someone talked us into churros.

We saw lots of animals, too.  The kangaroos were great fun!  But the star of the day was the Kimodo Dragon.

Lukie kept talking about him like he was the best thing in the whole world!

Now time for a Twinterview (age 3 years 10.5 months):

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Baskets!

When I was growing up, Easter was always a magical time.  There were special Masses at church.  The Passion Play on Palm Sunday was breathtaking to me.  I remember sitting there listening to the words that described the events leading up to Jesus' death and thinking that people can be truly evil when they are afraid or their "power" is threatened.  At the same time, I remember the feeling of hope I had. Hope that rebirth was possible.

I know there are a lot of pagan rituals that are associated with Easter.  After all, so many of our Christian holidays came about to thwart pagan practices.  The thing is that Easter and Jesus' resurrection are a time for hope and rejoicing.  The Easter Bunny visited me when I was growing up as a celebration of the special day and he has come for Gracie and Lucas as well.

When we woke up this morning (after 7 am - YAY!), Gracie and Lucas were not anticipating anything.  After all, I haven't said anything to them about the Easter Bunny coming.  They were delighted to see small baskets waiting for them in the living room.  Just a bit of chocolate (let's be real, some of this is for me), a toy, and swim suits for the summer.  As I write this, Gracie and Luke are in the bathtub playing with his brand new cars.  The giggling and laughing is such a wonderful sound!

Gracie with Belle and her chocolate bunny.

Lucas got his chocolate bunny open first!

Gracie's new Little Mermaid swimsuit.  She wanted to wear it to breakfast. 
My sister has a tradition for her children's Easter baskets.  She always puts their new summer swimsuit and a new towel inside.  It's a wonderful tradition, one that I decided to adopt for Gracie and Lukie!  Gracie got two new suits:  One was a Little Mermaid bikini and the other was a Dora tankini. Lukie got Spiderman and a Blue Thunder (the Monster Truck) swim trunks.  There are signs that neither of them will take them off anytime soon!

Easter Brunch

 On Easter Sunday, we started a new tradition.  We dressed ourselves up and went to Easter Sunday brunch at Daddy's friend's restaurant, Matisse.

Gracie wore a headband I made especially for Easter Day.

 We ate lots of food and Abue Juve and Tio Martin tried to eat what they thought was caviar.  It wasn't.  It was freshly made horseradish! Gracie and Lukie's favorite food was the candy at the end of their meal!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Gracie, My Driver

Gracie is obsessed with my steering wheel.  Well, actually, she is obsessed with my entire car.  She wants to drive it.  Desperately.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mr. Moon

"Yes, Lukie."
"Somebody cut Mr. Moon! There's a piece missing!"


"Mommy! Mommy!"
"Yes, Gracie?"
"Mr. Moon is hungry. I think he wants some iCarly yogurt. Can I share mine?"
"I don't know. How are you going to get it to him?"
"He is going to come down and get it from me in our car."
"Oh, well, sure, then."


"Mommy, Mr. Moon is still awake. I need to tell him that Mr. Shunshine is waking up and it is time for him to go to sleep."

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

More things heard around our house

"Daddy, look at me.  Look at my eyes.  Do you see my angry eyes?  These are my angry eyes because you are not being nice. Be nice, Daddy, or I will not play with you."

"Lukie, leave Mommy alone.  She's in a time out."
"A time out?  Mommy's in a time out?" Lucas stares at me sitting on the couch quietly.
"Yes.  Come outside. Mommy needs to sit in her time out."
"Mommy's in a time out? What did she do? Gracie, Mommy's in a time out!"

"Mommy, I can do that!" (said watching commercial number 814)
"I can do that, too."
"No, Gracie.  That is for boys, not for girls."
"No, Lukie.  Girls can play with that toy, too. Not just boys."

"Mommy, when I grow up I will be the Mommy and you can be the baby. Okay?"

Monday, January 17, 2011

Travel Town USA

I've lived in Southern California all my life, but there are so many things I have no idea about.  Travel Town is one of them.  If it weren't for a birthday party we attended in early 2010, I would never know Travel Town exists in Los Angeles.

We ended up at Travel Town this trip purely because of traffic.  We had intended to go to the L.A. Zoo, but there was an accident that prevented us from getting there.  Instead, I had Daddy turn the opposite direction and we came across a parking spot just in time.

Travel Town is an amazing place designed for anyone who LOVES trains.  Oh, the trains!  Lucas was in heaven and Gracie was not far behind.  There were big trains and little trains.  Trains that had wheels bigger than Gracie and Lucas combined!  There were trains you could climb on and trains that were off limits.  There was even a train you could ride.
Can you see Lucas and Gracie?  I know it is hard because of the ENORMOUS train wheel.

Gracie loved running inside the passenger car.

Ready to be an engineer.
I think if you let them, Gracie and Lucas could spend all day at Travel Town and never get bored.

Isn't 3 1/2 years old fun?

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Remind me not to make goals and Some things heard around our house

The goal thing. Not working.

Some fun things heard around our house:

Mommy, when I grow up, I'm going to be Tammy and I'm going to paint your nails.

Mommy, when you get little and I get big, I'm going to cook your dinner and help you put your jammies on.

Mommy, Mark says I have dirty finger nails.  I told him not to use mean words.  He was bewwy mean.

Mommy, I told the coyotes that they can't come in our house.  I told them they need to be quiet because they are bewwy loud and mean.

Mommy, there are no monsters in our house?  No, Lukie.  There are no monsters.  And you locked all of the doors so they can't get in?  That's right, Lukie.  You helped me lock all of the doors.  No monsters can get in.  Oh, good.  If they try to get in the door will be locked and they will be stuck outside.

Mommy, when I was in your tummy I was on the top and Lukie was on the bottom?  Yep.  That's right! And I would swim around and around and Lukie would just have the hiccups, right?  Yep.  That's right!  Lukie is so silly.  He sure is!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year and New Goal

I think we can all agree that 2010 was a crazy year for everyone.  Frankly, I'm happy it is gone.  It wasn't a banner year for us.

Well, except that Daddy now has a working kidney.

And, Gracie and Lukie are both potty trained.

And we're together.

Okay, scratch that.  The year ended well. 

However, I know that I've dropped the ball when it comes to Gracie and Luke.  I've hardly taken any pictures and I haven't done a good job of recording all of the amazing memories we have had in the last year.  I wish I had something on which I could record notes to myself.  It would be awesome.  I'm forever thinking:  "I need to put that on the blog." and then I don't.

So, I'm rededicating myself to the 365 Project.  Unfortunately, we are now at a 363 project because I did not decide to do this until today.  I will do this!  I can! 

Check back later for some update posts for December.  We had Tamale Day and several other days to report on!

Here's to a fantastic 2011!

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