Showing posts from February, 2011

Happy Matching Family

My boys, as you may have noticed, dress in matching clothes quite often. This is a tradition (habit?) that goes all the way back to June of 2003 when I went from having one child to a pair of children. Here is our very first family portrait as a family of four. Although you can't really see it, both baby Benjamin and Nathan are wearing while collared shirts and tan shorts (overalls in Ben's case).

My urge to dress my children alike goes all the way back to my own childhood, when I saw Julie Andrews make clothing for the children in her charge from bedroom curtains, resulting in this:

Having only a brother, I dreamt of the day I'd have two little girls that I could make dresses for, who would always be dressed alike. Of course, that didn't happen.

What happened instead is that my sister-in-law, Heather (great name!) had two little boys, our nephews Tanner and Braxton. She bought (or received as gifts) lots of amazing little boys clothes that matched or coordinated. When T…

Brothers, Friends

They're brothers by birth, of course. Please oh please let them grow up to be friends.

Mission San Antonio de Padua

We have a fourth grader in the house, and if you are living in California, you know what that means: the California Mission Project!

Mission San Antonio de Padua
My husband did one, but my fourth grade year was spent at a tiny private school in the San Fernando Valley and I completely missed out on it. The California Missions are such an amazing part of California history. There are lots of great resources on the web if you want to read up on them.
Most fourth grade classes in California have the students build a model of a Mission. It's become a little cottage industry, and craft stores here sell Styrofoam kits and countless accessories to go with them. Nathan's teacher gave the kids a choice of 5 or 6 different projects, not just limiting them to building a model. One option was making a video journal. Since Nathan recently saved up to buy himself a Flip video camera, this seemed like the perfect choice for him. He got to choose any Mission, but I encouraged him to go with Mi…

Cans for Pounds

My friend Ron works in construction. Like so many people, he found himself out of work last fall. One night his wife was shaving his head and his son snapped a photo of him. Ron was horrified by the photo and how, um, round he had become:
He decided to do something about it. Since he was already out of work, he had a lot of time to devote to it. He wanted a little accountability as he sought to lose weight, so he came up with a plan: Cans for Pounds. He asked people to sponsor his weight loss for 90 days by donating one can of food for every pound that he lost, which he would then deliver to a small local food bank that feeds 200-300 homeless and hungry each week. I enthusiastically signed up to support him, but I told Ron that I would only donate up to 50 cans. He thought I was crazy and told me there was no way he'd lose anywhere close to 50 pounds... 25 or 30 would be his max.
For the last 90 days, Ron has gone running every single day. He pushed himself daily until he was drenc…

Anyone Can Cook!

The husband and I were up late one night, folding laundry and flipping the TV channels. We paused on the Disney Channel and ended up watching most of Ratatouille. It's such a strange/gross/cute/funny movie, isn't it? My favorite thing about the movie is the character of the recently deceased  Auguste Gusteau, chef, television star, and author of a book called Anyone Can Cook. He was convinced that anyone could indeed cook, which is the inspiration for a little rat named Remy to end up as a chef. Ick. But kinda cool.
I didn't learn to cook until I was 18 and in college, living in a teeny-tiny apartment by myself. I had no idea how to do anything other than put a frozen entree in the microwave. A cousin of mine took me under her wing and taught me how to make a few things, including a recipe I called "Slimy Green Burritos." I made them for my husband while we were engaged, and he thought they were so good, he made up a song about them! "Oh yeah they're gree…

Need a boost?

We are going through a pretty rough time of it lately. It's been one of those daysweeksmonths where we seem to be getting pummeled non-stop from every corner! We've been pretty low key about it publicly, not ones to moan and groan and complain. However, one of our friends noticed something wasn't quite right, and she and her husband went out of their way to do something so incredibly thoughtful for our family that I was just completely blown away. We all were. It was just a small thing, but it made all the difference to us. And it reminded me that we need to pay attention to those around us. Be on the lookout for our friends and family who are quietly struggling and need an ear to listen, a shoulder to cry on, or just some kind words of encouragement. Do you have someone in your life who could use a little boost? Why don't you give it to them? Go on, do it!

Speaking of boosts, take a look at the amazing booster seat below:

I'm dying from the cleverness! You can get …