Sunday, March 30, 2008

A beautiful day at the beach.

We go to the beach all the time just to play in the sand, but on Friday we decided to go play at the beach for real. That meant swimsuits, beach umbrellas, and all. We got all loaded up and headed out. Now I have to note that Anton chose to ignore the weather forecast when planning this trip. So on the way down to the beach this is what we saw:

A lot of nothing. Fog, fog everywhere. But fog is better than rain (or snow for you Northerners), so we continued on our way. It was about 66 degrees outside, so not exactly sun on the beach weather.

But my family didn't let this stop them. I dipped my feet in the water once, and that was enough for me. But Ella and Anton had fun seeing just how cold they could get.

Alex really wanted to join in, but he just can't get over that fear of the water thing. But it didn't stop him from having fun anyways.

What a cutie.

It was really windy, and I was doing my best to keep warm on the blanket. So Anton was forced to take up a game of Frisbee by himself.

He'd throw it up into the air and the wind would blow it right back to him. It was quite entertaining to watch.

However, most of the time was spent playing in the sand.

The kids wouldn't let us bury them any further than their waists. But they had fun with it.

After a while, Ella took up a post in a chair and wouldn't move:

She was convulsing with shivers and had all sorts of snot running down her face. She didn't want to leave, but we thought we'd better go before the hypothermia set in.

We all dried off and then went and had a picnic. Ella is all about the picnics lately. Daddy and Alex were having fun too.

If anyone ever wants to borrow this grin, just let me know.

I've got more than enough to go around.

Alex discovered his love for pears on our picnic:

He would've eaten the whole thing, seeds and all, if we hadn't stopped him.

But regardless of the uncooperative weather, we still had a really fun time playing on the beach. Plus it saved us the trouble of applying sunscreen!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Don't Drop the Baby.

Anton took the kids out the other day while I was working/sleeping. I don't remember which. It was raining outside, and as they were walking into a store, Anton slipped on the pavement and went down. He was holding both of the kids when it happened. Ella landed okay, but Alex went down face first. They didn't end up going shopping. They came straight home. Alex cried for almost an hour afterwards and we were about ready to take him to the hospital when we finally got him calmed down. The Motrin probably helped too. But he has been marked.

Nothing like a little bit of road rash to make that cute baby face look so pathetic.

But after that first hour you would never have know anything happened to him.

He's still my happy little guy.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

I got my first job!

I just wanted to hop in here and say that I got my first scoping job yesterday! I started posting ads on Friday and already I've had two inquires, one of which led to a job. I've been working on it like a mad woman. Hopefully I can finish it tomorrow. It wasn't the easiest first job to start with, but it all adds up to experience in the end. So hooray for me! My business might actually work its way out the red some day!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter Festivities

So when we weren't celebrating birthday we did actually do a few Easter related activities.

On Saturday we went to a church Easter egg hunt/party. They did an egg race, the kind where you carry the egg on a spoon. Ella lined up at the starting line and I explained to her that she needed to go slowly so as to not break her egg. Well, I think she took me a bit too seriously.

See all the kids heading the opposite direction as her? That's because they all went down to the end and back before she'd gotten five feet from the starting line. Though she made it all the way without breaking her egg, unlike other kids.

She's so cute.

Then the kids did a ring toss. Both of them cheated.

It looks like Ella got this one on, but it actually bounced off. She had no problem picking up the ones she missed and tossing them again until she got it.

Alex just didn't bother with the tossing.

He walked right up and stuck them on. Super cheater. I guess they take after their mother.

Then it was time for the egg hunt. Ella understood it much better this year than last. She needed no encouragement.

Run, Ella, run!! She managed to fill her basket in good time.

She loved shaking the basket to hear all the candy rattling in the eggs. This would cause half the eggs to fall out of the basket. So she actually spent more time re-collecting her own eggs than picking up new ones.

Alex did really good too.

Though he needed encouragement to actually put the eggs in the basket.

He would much rather have opened them all immediately and eaten all the contents.

After the hunt the kids sat down with dad to check out their haul. They ate every piece of candy in one sitting.

And if all that candy wasn't enough, they served lunch that consisted of hot dogs, chips and...

cookies!! My kids were so sugared up they wouldn't nap later. Even though Ella seems to have been all pooped out while we were still at the activity.

That night we went to a BBQ at our friends' house. Lots of good food and socializing. Then back home for the traditional egg dying. Usually I get into dying eggs like I do carving pumpkins. But this year we just didn't have the time nor the energy. I made up four colors of dye and boiled 12 eggs (though only 11 made it to the dye). The eggs were done in about 5 minutes flat.

Ella also managed to spill the blue dye in about 2 minutes flat. That would be why she is wearing no clothes. But the eggs turned out pretty in the end.

The pink egg carton was the perfect backdrop.

What more could you ask for?

Anton and I have had an ongoing dilemma since we got married about how to deal with Easter. We both hate how most of the traditional Easter activities relate in no way to the true meaning of Easter, Christ's resurrection. So we are still trying to fine-tune our traditions. This year we tried out the basket thing. Unfortunately we tried to squeeze it in before 9:00 church. Not the best idea. It was all rushed and we were late to church. But the kids loved getting more candy.

Look how pleased. I got them each a coloring book, a little bit of candy, and some goldfish.

Not too much stuff. Ella helped pick out the coloring books, so she knew what she was getting. But she was excited anyways.

I didn't hide the eggs we dyed because the humidity here will make the colors run onto whatever you've hid them near. So I hid 8 plastic ones, which they only found 6 of.

After church, before they could ruin their clothes completely, I snapped a few pictures.

Can I tell you how much I love having blond children? Perfect Easter coloring! Ella was much more cooperative than Alex so I ended up with more pictures of her.

She loves the camera.

Then later as the sun was going down we were out in the backyard and I snapped a few more.

Is he not the cutest thing ever? Are you all tired of me saying that yet? I loved the backlighting.

She's growing up too fast. And this next one is my absolute favorite of all!!!

If your heart isn't melting then you aren't human. Look at those dimples! He is such a little stud!! Look out ladies. In 16 years he's going to be a menace in the dating world.

However, just to show you that my children don't always look so darling, I got one of Ella in more of a natural attitude.

Picking her nose while talking on the phone. Classic.

So that does it for Easter for us. Hope you enjoyed the ride!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Baby!

Look at me, posting two days in a row!! Amazing. But how could I not post when we had such festivities today. While it was Easter, and I'll get around to posting photos of that, even more importantly, it was Anton's birthday. Every so many years his special day happens to fall on Easter and this year was one of them. So we kindof skipped most of the Easter fun and went straight to birthday fun. The most important of which is, of course, the cake.

I got the best compliment in the world on this one. A girl who came over to help us celebrate and eat asked me where I'd gotten the cake! I was so worried it wouldn't turn out well. I am very pleased with the end result. I was trying to make it look like a giant peanut butter cup. And while it didn't quite accomplish that, it still looked pretty cool.

Now let me tell you what's inside this beaut'. Chocolate cake with chocolate and peanut butter chips stacked in four layers with peanut butter buttercream between each one. Then all wrapped in a shell of dark chocolate with a milk chocolate ganache on top. Oh my. It was so rich. And yummy. It was hard to eat a whole piece. But never fear, we persevered. Here's a close-up for you:

Mmmmmm. Now that you are all salivating recklessly I will move on to the rest of the birthday festivities.

I made Anton his requested dinner of Buffalo chicken:

He actually originally requested BLTs, but I told him that wasn't acceptable for the day you can get anything you want. I made boneless wings this time. Good stuff.

Then Anton opened his presents. I'd given him an iPod Shuffle earlier in the week. Today he got:

Cadbury Eggs. The caramel ones of course.

Napoleon Dynamite.

And an electric razor. Very exciting. He couldn't think up a single thing he wanted for his birthday so I had to come up with it all on my own.

We had a whole horde of people over tonight for cake and ice cream. We knew we would need help eating the cake. In all my cake baking and decorating I forgot one essential thing, though. The candles. Our neighbor luckily had two, so that's all Anton got.

He made his wish and blew them out,

and then we all pigged out. Good times.

And that was how we celebrated Anton's birthday. And so as to not confuse holidays I will be posting our Easter festivities tomorrow. Happy Birthday Anton!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

One Reason I Like Living Here

The beach. It is probably the one thing I will miss when we move away from this swampy southern place. We went on Friday night. Anton chose to go as his birthday outing. We went pretty late in the evening so we only had time to walk around a little bit, but we had fun.

Before I start, though, I just want to say that I happen to think this is one of the cutest things in the whole wide world:

I just want to squish him to death.

Anyways. The sand on the beach is so white it looks like snow.

We wanted to cross over to a sand spit on the other side of a strip of water, so Ella, Alex, and Anton went out to investigate if it was shallow enough.

They were able to walk all the way across, but since we had the stroller we decided to walk around. Besides, Alex doesn't like the water. He whines until Daddy comes and picks him up.

We found all sorts of fun things while we were wandering along.

Jelly fish.

Sea shells.

And all sorts of trash. We picked up an entire bag full while walking.

Alex also got flying lessons.

You can also see the wooden snake we found down there in the sand.

I have to say that the beach is one of my favorite places to take pictures. It's always the perfect backdrop.

Here's my handsome little man. Such a babe.

My wild-haired little girl. Crazy thing.

And all my babies together. What a good looking bunch.

As we walked along we got to watch the sun set on one side:

And the moon rise on the other:

Anton got a bit hungry.

But the moon didn't taste good, so he spit it out.

We had a lot of fun. And other than losing Anton's sun glasses, it was a perfect birthday outing. Now wait until you see the cake I made for him. Yum.