Friday, December 23, 2011

Rolo Turtles

A simply delicious holiday treat. In case you want to make some last minute yummy niblets, say for Santa, check these out!

(there are many iterations on the internet right now, they're so simple to make & yummy...this is how I made mine).

Take a bag of pretzels (I've used tiny twists or the little checkboard ones). Lay pretzels on a wax paper lined cookie sheet. Unwrap Rolos & set one on top of each pretzel. Bake in oven at 250* for 3-4 minutes. Upon taking the pretzel/rolos out of the oven, smoosh a pecan on the top of each one. Refrigerate or pop in the freezer for a few minutes so they set up/cool.

EAT! Yum!

*for those who don't like nuts, I also have made a Rolo/pretzel sandwich which is also quite tasty!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Tinkerbell Prep

Dahlia is off with Grandma & Grandpa R this evening in their hotel as we prepare for her 'Tinkerbell' Party tomorrow. By "prepare" I mean sitting here having a glass of wine & reading blogs. I have been working all day - cleaning the house, making goodies (not that you can really TELL), the presents are wrapped, the toys are mostly picked up. *sigh* I mostly want to be relaxing while watching an episode of The X-Files but I feel guilty when there's so much to do. Ah, I work better in the daylight. Maybe I should just go to bed.

Look forward to Tinkerbell party pics tomorrow! I hope it'll be a fun day!

(ps - by "party" I mean Grandparents & one aunt, uncle & 3 cousins...we haven't ventured into the land of "friend parties" yet!!). Maybe for the big "5!"

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Happy Birthday, Dear Dahlia!

My baby is 4! How is that even possible?

She began her life like this and this - what a trip to have everything documented so that I can revisit it! What a crazy 4 years it has been.

My sweet peanut is becoming such her own whole PERSON. She is very independent - wanting to do (or at least try doing) everything herself. She is 100% into Princesses and anything PINK. She could play Princess (with her little dolls) for hours upon hours a day. Which is great, but she wants ME to also play the whole time, which gets tiresome, at best. I try to remember these times are fleeting, but some days it's rough!

She is an 'artiste' through & through. I am so happy about that! She is so happy when she's coloring, drawing, CREATING - it's pretty awesome. And I think she's quite talented. Her drawings are awesome. Her people, rainbows, spiders, trees, whatever melt my heart. It's hard to throw her creations away (and we are really running out of space!). She loves to play with my craft supplies - whether it's yarn (when she's "sewing"), markers, stamps, collage making materials, paints, glitter - you name it, she is ready to try. We have so much fun making things together.

She is also so good with her brother (most of the time). When she's not frustrated with him for 'stealing her toys' she is really good about "showing" him how to do things. And most of the time he is receptive. She tells him she will teach him, because she is the big sister & big sisters are good at doing that.

She goes to school one day a week, which is usually a challenge. She says she "misses" me but I know she has a good time once I leave. She's so quiet & such a good listener & follower of directions when she's there. She has learned so much in the last year there - her scissor skills are superb & writing her name is unbelievable!

She still enjoys 'hiking' with us & playing in the creek. We have had so many fun hours of throwing rocks, sticks & toy boats into the water to see where they will end up. She also likes to "fish" when she's down there. Any stick will do.

I love watching her imagination take flight. She doesn't need fancy toys - she just uses whatever is handy to become the bed, the lamp, the Christmas tree, the car the whatever (for her Princesses & friends). A cardboard box house has been played in & loved now for months & months between the two of them.

She could watch a movie every day - but I can't say I blame her, so could I. She loves listening to the "Disney" channel I created on Pandora & has started singing along to songs from Mary Poppins & The Sound of Music which squeezes my heart even more. We have dance parties in the kitchen to whatever is on & we don't miss "Dash's Dance Party" in between shows on PBS.

She is the light of my life. I love her more than I knew was possible.

Can't wait to see what delights the next year will bring!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

RIP Beavis

 Beavis - May 1995 - December 11, 2011

Beavis - taken about a week before his death.
My heart is heavy this week as I had to say good bye to one of my long-time friends and constant companions. Beavis (Bociefus, aka "Tan Man") ended his journey with us on Sunday afternoon. After going downhill quickly in the past few months, there was nothing we could do for him. It was excruciating. He started really deteriorating quickly on Friday (he was already down to about 5lbs from his normal 12) and we were pretty sure the end was near...but he hung on. He wanted to be with us, he seemed to still like being petted, but by Saturday afternoon he pretty much stopped doing too much. It became hard for him to walk, his eyes began to look glazed, his spunk was definitely gone.

Early December 2011
Saturday night he could no longer walk. He tried. In fact he went into the back room on his own power & we were sure that was it. But it wasn't. It was heartbreaking. We didn't know what to do. We couldn't take him into the ER vet to put him to sleep because there was no one to come to our house to watch our kids, and while we *could* have each gone individually, that would've been way too hard.

Sunday morning he was still with us, but not moving. He only laid. He refused any food or water. I sat with him for hours stroking his fur & telling him how much I love him & how I'll miss him. He was in a clothes basket & I took him outside in the fresh air & sunshine for a bit...he seemed to enjoy sniffing, but after that he found it harder to get comfortable in the laundry basket.

Early afternoon came & we started trying to find someone to come over to babysit so we could take him in. It was so sad. Finally Steve's brother Paul agreed to come over & sit with the kiddos while we made the saddest journey ever.

I don't really want to talk about the actual "event" - it wasn't out of the ordinary, in fact I guess it went remarkably fast, but the whole experience was so gut-wrenching & traumatic that I don't really want to think about it.
Early December 2011

I keep "seeing" Beavis out of the corner of my eye - in the "meatloaf" position in the basement, curled up on our bed...but it's not him. He's gone. I'm a sad Mama.

Dahlia's doing okay - she says she  misses Beavis, but I don't think she gets it. She knows he went to heaven (but is flabbergasted about how he got there) but today asked if we were going to get to see him again. ("Not for a loooooong time, honey.). August, of course, is 100% clueless. He never did learn how to say "Beavis" - only Juno or "Nunooooo!).

Juno is sad. All day yesterday she wanted love & affection - something she's rarely asked for in her 2 years. She enjoyed being petted & loved up. I think she probably knew long before we did that Beavis was leaving. Cats just know these things. (and wow does she need to go on a diet! holy cats!0

So, rest in peace, my friend. You were with me my entire adult life - through the good, the bad & the ugly. Lived with me in at least 9 residences (!), moved across the country with me, enjoyed your "Hollywood years," had many friends (Mufasa, Winky, Iko) along the lived a good, happy, long life & I will miss you.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

My Little Angel

Today marked Dahlia's "stage" debut. I must admit, I took a photo of her name in the program. The first of many I'm sure (I hope?). She was an Angel in the Christmas program at our church. And oh - my - goodness, she was edible she was so cute & sweet - if I do say so myself.
The Littlest Angel

She has been really good at the music for weeks now. We have a CD of the songs & I'm about ready to bash my head in from listening to the simplistic, repetitive tunes & lyrics, but she eats it up. She walks around the house talking about laying the baby in the manager & the stars sparkling & shining.

Yesterday she had rehearsal & although she was bored to tears (well, bored enough to lean, sit, yawn, play with her tongue, etc) she did great.

This morning, however, I was worried. She threw a MAJOR fit before going out the door about being "scared" and not wanting to sing, not liking to sing (yeah, right) and she didn't want to go. I suspect it was more a case of "I still want to play with some new toys I got for my birthday yesterday" than anything else. Eventually we got in the car & made it.
I could seriously eat her alive.

Oh my sweet petite angel. Just like a little doll (side note: do NOT refer to her as "little angel" because CLEARLY she is BIG. Much BIGGER than her brother & she takes great offense to being called little...funny, I seem to remember having the EXACT same attitude!). While they were warming up in costume this morning, my heart nearly exploded from the cuteness factor.

My sister-&-brother-in-law & nephew Allison, Josh & Anders; Carolyn & Roger, Grandma Trudy & Auntie Joan were all in attendance this morning to cheer her on. She gave us slight glances & waves; she sang EVERY single word & did about 65% of the motions. She was simply divine (if I do say so myself). It was amazing to watch her up there. Something that at some point every parent likely feels.

With cousin Anders.
She did great  & I am so proud of my little Angel. We celebrated afterward with cookies & punch & lots of running around in the church. I'm sure I will enjoy the video for years to come.