Monday, April 27, 2009

The festival of John

So in our family birthdays are alot like Hanukkah, they seem to go on for days and days...

Yesterday we went to Schlitterbahn for John's Birthday part deux. We brought along our cousins and Stephanie and her boyfriend met us there. Unfortunately, I didn't get many pictures, Brian pointed out that cameras and water parks don't really mix and I could hardly argue with that. After I almost dropped it in a pool, I put it away.

We have been having a blast with our seasons pass to schlitterbahn. Emma and John are Adrenaline junkies!!! Oh my goodness!!!! Emma went on a slide that is a sheer drop from 81 feet at 40 miles per hour. AND SHE WANTED TO DO IT AGAIN!!!!

Chloe overcame her fear of rides, and rode several of the waterslides. Which left lonely old me on the lazy river..... all the kids have abandoned me for the adrenaline factor.

John's Family Bday Party

Preface: I have many friends who do not feel that fantasy elements in children's literature is something they want to expose their children to. I understand that, because even though I have come to a different conclusion, literature and imagination are such important aspects of my life. Being that my entire life has revolved around literature, I balk at banning books.

I know that everyone's decisions come from a place of love for their children and they know mine do as well. As a matter of fact, I think MOST parent's decisions come from love, even if they aren't the decisions I would make.

John wanted a Harry Potter themed Birthday night this year. I have been reading the first book to Emma, and he has been listening in. I know there is controversy about the books, but the themes of doing the right thing even when its hard, or unpopular I see as a very good thing.

We started out with some crafts, then we drank "butter beer" out of bunny goblets. Then we went on a scavenger hunt for all the stuffed animals that "norbert the naughty dragon" had hidden throughout the house. Clearly, then it was time for the "monster cookie".

After that Brian dreamed up the most awesome set of clues for the kids to follow. I was worried that I hadn't had enough time to plan, and that maybe it wouldn't be as fun. Usually, I go a little overboard with this stuff. The kids LOVED the whole evening, but especially the clues Daddy wrote for them.

Golden Dragon Acrobats 4/22

We decided to go and see the Golden Dragon Acrobats at Miller Outdoor Theater. The kids and I went early in the day to get the passes for Ticketed seating at 11am. I have never seen the line that long for any performance. I wrapped around the building. But the kids were troopers, by 11:45 we had our tickets and we went to ride the train and check on Toby the red panda at the zoo. Our kids are quite concerned for Toby and how is adjusting to life in the zoo. The day was beautiful and we had a blast.

After dinner, we left with Daddy in tow to Miller Outdoor theater. As we drove in the clouds were building. I felt downright smug that I had the forethought to get us covered seating. That should really be my first clue. Whenever I start to get smug about things, fate feels a need to intervene.

We stopped at Starbucks for the kids first Starbucks experience. I know its a little weird, but I am a little fanatic about the brand. It was my favorite job EVER! I was so excited about introducing them to starbucks.

By the time we got to Miller it was raining, lightening, and thundering. We found our seats under the roof. The place was packed out. I was FLOORED, there were people in the middle of a lightening storm, a whole lot of people sticking it out on the uncovered lawn. They are made of way tougher stuff than me. I was freaking out about the moist mist that drifted by me every once in awhile frizzing my hair.

Unfortunately, all that rain was dumping on our area of town too and we ended up passing about an hour and half in a parking lot waiting for the water to go down so we could get home. It wasn't so bad, we just watched some movies while we waited.

The kids LOVED the show, they stayed awake and alert the entire time. They talked about it for the entire rest of the week. It really was a breathtaking performance. There were all kinds of acrobatic tricks, but it had the beauty of a ballet. You just can't beat that for free entertainment. Now, if I can just get the kids to stop trying to make a tower out of my dining room chairs to climb for their grande finale......

Saturday, April 18, 2009

On my noble silver steed....

Usually Brian is the one rescuing me from things. I am usually overly optimistic..... almost psychotically optimistic...

Me: Well, look we don't need to wait and save money, this store will let us have the couch now and we don't have to pay them for 4 years!!!
Brian: Yes dear, but if you read the fine print, we would owe our soul to the devil.
Me: Oh

Even when we first met he was always my Knight in shining armor. I had a friend who told me that might be a problem, I thought she drastically under-rated my ability to get into trouble....

So, anyway, today with all the flooding, Brian was stranded at the airport where he couldn't get to his car. I got to go and rescue him in my noble, silver minivan. It was scary, and we had to turn around because of water quite a few time. But, the kids and I were very excited to be the rescue heroes. Well, all except Chloe, she fussed at Brian because she was excited about our dinner tonight (it was Indian heritage night, for more on that go to my recipe blog).

Anyway, we were very glad to have the Daddy man home, and he was glad to not be sleeping at the airport terminal....

Friday, April 17, 2009

Depression Cooking

I heard this term the other day while I was in a cleaning fit and it made me stop and pay attention. Sadly, I am so very literal I at first thought they were discussing emotionally blue chefs. What they were talking about was a "waste not, want not" kind of cooking. I didn't know there was a technical term for it. It is the way I always have cooked, I am pretty sure my mom had a huge impact on forming this idea.

For example, you purchase a chicken to bake for dinner, so you serve baked chicken for dinner, you take all the leftover meat off the bone for another meal or casserole, and then you take the chicken carcass and using all your veggie scraps make chicken stock for another meal of soup. So you are getting three or more meals out of one chicken. (this is a huge reason why buying a whole chicken is better than just the individual cuts).

Or if I make rice for dinner I will make a big batch, then turn it into rice cereal for breakfast the next morning, and then into fried rice another night or even rice pudding for dessert.

That was always just something I did, cause I saw my mom do it, but I guess now that the economy is a little tighter its become trendy to be frugal. Now I am on a hunt for more frugal/depression type recipes or ideas. Anyone have any to throw my way? (except the victory garden, I have a black thumb and feel to much pity to put the plants under my "tender care").

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Family Day: Challenger 7 Park

For some fun family time we went to the park. The kids had a blast, and so did Brian and I. Everyone loved the hill of Buttercups growing on the hill, the kids picked them and picked them.

The Woodlands Mall

I am technically the mom of 4, although the oldest child is already an adult, so you don't usually see her schlepping to all the kiddie events with us.

My parents were keeping Emma and John for a few days, and so Chloe got some "only child" time. She really wanted them to stay longer, she fell very easily into her role as only child.

We took a trip down to the woodlands mall to hang out with Stephanie. It was so much fun. We loved all the playareas, visted the HMNS extension at the mall, and rode the carousel. Everyone loved visiting Sam Moon, and we scored some cool hair accessories.

Easter 2009

Maybe I am just getting lazy, or the kids are getting older. Normally we do that whole traditional easter thing. But this year we decided to go to Chuck E Cheese for easter. The kids said it was the "best easter ever!!!" I kinda have to agree, it was definitely the easiest. We did an egg hunt at home, went to the Chuck E Cheese near my parents house, and then did another egg hunt at Grandma and Grandpa's house. The kids left full and spoiled.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The big Baboon by the light of the moon........

We had a sweet sibling moment I had to snap a picture of. John dropped his apple on the floor, and he was so sad. Chloe gave him her apple. I was so proud..... John looks a little shocked.

Since our unit study on birds, Emma loves them. This has been her favorite. It reminds me of her great grandma, she loved birds too. Anyway, Emma was determined to catch a bird. But the pigeons had her number...

While we waiting for Daddy, Chloe and John on the train, mommy tooks pics of Emma.

The kids climbing through the fish tunnel.

mommy's little hermit crabs...

The orangutans were a scream. This little guy was a cutie, and he had a blanket. Chloe found it mesmerizing. She felt for him when he dropped his Gee Gee.

They had put easter eggs out for the orangutans to play with. This poor guy looks like he is in a sugar coma.

This was the highlight of John's visit. Getting up close and friendly with the Komodo Dragon.

Me: oh look brian, the frogs give their babies rides on their backs too.
Brian: Ah, Jenn, that's not whats going on here.
Me: Wha... I don't get it, what are they doing?
*brief silence*
Me: ohhhhhhhhhh, now I get it.....

Emma and Chloe in front of the albino crocodile...

Daddy and John were just in their element in the reptile house.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Disney's Beauty and the Beast at Miller Outdoor Theater

We went to see the Broadway Show performance of Beauty and beast at Miller Outdoor Theater last night. Emma was practically hyperventilating she was so excited. Chloe was funny about it. She has been funny about so many things lately..... Here is how the conversation went

C: Mommy, how many songs will there be?
Me: Ah, I dunno Chloe... I'm not sure how much of the performance they will do.
C: I don't want them to sing five songs. I don't like that many songs. I think I want to go home.
Me: Chloe, we are a family, a team, and we don't split up. So you are stuck here, I am sorry.
C: I want to go home, I may not like it, I don't want to stay.
  • chloe cries
  • mommy and daddy try to talk her down off the ledge for 20 minutes and convince her of so much fun this will be.
  • chloe continues crying
  • wash, rinse repeat 45 times
  • the curtain goes up, chloe stops crying and starts giggling
On the way home the conversation went like this.....

Me: Okay everyone what was your favorite thing today?
Brian: The Komodo Dragon, I still can't believe he is named smog.
Emma: Toby the Red Panda
John: snores, he was already passed out
Chloe: Hey Mommy, you know what was my favorite part? I like the zoo, and the train was fun, but my very favorite part was Beauty and the Beast.
Much laughter ensues