Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Way Back Wednesday

So, for my second Way Back Wednesday post I picked a picture way back to when I was 11 years old! This is my friend, Suzanne, and I one Halloween. How about this for a costume? This jacket belonged to one of Suzanne's uncles. A rather large Uncle, as you can see. I guess we must have went out and bought matching masks and hats to make the outfit complete.

We must have been a hit around the neighborhood. This picture was taken at my neighbor's house. I'm not sure if we started at Suzanne's house or mine that night for our trick-or-treating, but we had a big neighborhood and that was a lot of walking in-step with each other!


Hope you enjoyed!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Reporting for Spring Training

Jack and Ben reported for their first official baseball practice this past weekend.

The following two pictures represent the following:

1. Spring is coming (woo hoo!)
2. I can't wait to see these bodies in full uniform
3. My house will soon be covered in grass-stained baseball pants, baseball hats, mitts, batting gloves, balls, bats, athletic supporters, cleats, eye black, water bottles, sunscreen, Phiten necklaces.....
4. My zoom lens is getting ready for some full-time attention.




Mmmmmm.....spring.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Re-inspired

About 7 or 8 years ago I took up rubberstamping as a hobby. A friend had me over for a party at her house where you got to hand-make cards and from that day on I was hooked. I loved making cards and frequently made batches as gifts for friends, family and teachers. People seemed genuinely excited to get the cards. Who doesn't love having spare greeting cards around the house so you don't have to run out at the last minute??

I went strong for 5-6 years and then my stamping "phase" started waining. My good friend and inspiration (Liane) who was a Stampin' Up demonstrator called it quits and sold a lot of her stuff. And, of course, having four children of my own made it difficult to find the time to stamp. AND....... photography (and blogging) became my new passion. So, the stamping supplies have been collecting some dust in the cellar.

But my sister called a few weeks back asking if I would make some cards for a fundraiser a group in her town was having for two children who are sick. One of the children (Abby) is a friend of my niece's and her story is just heartbreaking. She has brain cancer and has had 13 surgeries over the last 13 months. She is confined to a wheel chair and can't really talk or eat well.

I have chaired a silent auction twice for our church and I know how important and sometimes difficult it is to get donations. And after hearing about Abby I absolutely agreed to make some cards. So Liane and I got together and worked on making some cards and I found myself a little re-inspired to stamp! We made 30 cards in total. I made two different sets of ten cards with these cool templates that some stamping genius created which result in ten pretty coordinating cards.

Here is one set done with pinks, brown and a lime green:


And here are a couple of samples from a set done in purples and greens.

And Liane made ten of these cute and simple cards in different colors.

So I hope that somebody will put a nice bid on these cards! I just might go on-line soon and look at Stampin' Up's most recent catalog!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Way Back Wednesday

Yesterday I came up with an idea. I missed the Ten on Tuesday post, and let's face it.....I'm not so great at those posts. By the time I come to number 8 I am really scrounging for ideas. But I do like the idea of having a regular post. So I came up with one. Way Back Wednesday. The idea would be to post some sort of picture from the past and provide an accompanying description or story.

So here is my first Way Back Wednesday picture. This picture was taken before I was even a thought. This is the only existing picture (that I'm aware of) of my mom, her parents and all of her siblings. My Aunt came for a visit recently and brought the picture. I couldn't believe it. I was so excited to see it....and so surprised that I'd never seen it before.

My mom was the oldest of 5, with 3 sisters and one brother. I believe she was about 23 here. In this picture are: Bottom row (L to R) My beautiful mom, cousin Michael in her lap, Auntie Sandi and cousin Lynn in her lap, Auntie Maureen, Uncle Joey. Top Row (L to R) Grandpa Joe, Grandma Ginny, Auntie Pat and Uncle Bob. Uncle Bob is married to Mom's sister so he is the only non sibling adult. But I love him just the same!

So happy Wednesday all. Any of my blogging friends want to play? Deb, Paula, Jamie, Lisa, anyone? It doesn't have to be THIS Way Back, but an older picture! Let me know if you decide to play!

Also - a big happy birthday to my sister, Lisa!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Supporting the Skiers

Alas, I finally made an appearance up at the mountain to cheer on my little skiers. Most weekends Chris drives away with one or two or three kids and goes skiing. I stay home with at least Chica and continue with the life's daily grind. So for a change.... Amy, Luke and I headed for the mountain Sunday afternoon. It was a beautifully sunny day and the car ride was peaceful with the kids watching Toy Story and eating their fast food lunches. So when I missed the exit and had to drive 29 miles to the next exit to turn around and then another 29 back....it wasn't a complete disaster. Just a few extra deep breaths for mom.

My only expectations for the trip were 1) to get out of the house 2) to watch Jack and Ben ski and show my support for their efforts 3) to have Luke and Amy get some fresh air and hopefully do a little sledding outside the lodge and 4) to grab a few pictures. All were accomplished.

There is a tiny little hill outside the lodge where Amy took turns sledding with Ben and Luke.



I attempted to get skiing pictures but the sunlight was poor and my lens can zoom but doesn't handle low light that great. So here is one shot of Jack zooming down the hill. He was "all that" skiing in just his UCONN sweatshirt.


Here Jack is with buddy, Brendan, posing for me while riding up the lift. I still can't believe my baby #1 rides up the chairlift without an adult. Same for baby #2.


At the end of the day I convinced Luke to get his skis so he could practice on the little magic carpet. Here is his priceless smile as I cheered him on. I was surprised at how well he moved around in those skis. Big year for Luke learning to ski and skate!!!


So despite my extra hour drive, the trip was a success.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Snow Nose

Snow nose is a (most often) temporary loss of pigment in the center of the nose. A pink to brown light stripe appears in the center of the nose, with the edges remaining black. The nose returns to full black color during the longer daylight months. Once thought to be a winter-only condition, dogs in warmer southern climates have also been reported to have snow nose, also called winter nose.

This was Chewie soon after we brought him home. He had the cutest nose EVER. Am I right?

This is Chewie today. The black nose that I fell in love with is now pink. But now I understand why! My neighbor did some research and learned about Snow Nose. I'm hoping when the weather warms and the snow is gone, my little black nose will reappear! (Note: also learned this can be caused by plastic food and water dishes....so will probably switch those out too!)

Monday, February 9, 2009

A First

Not long ago I was approached by a mom from playgroup about taking some maternity pictures with her and her daughter. I was as excited and touched as I was nervous. I have never done a real shoot before and wasn't sure I had the skills to pull off what she was looking for. But I said yes because I wanted to give it a try.

So off I went one sunny morning and took a bunch of pictures of this beautiful momma with her beautiful belly and her beautiful first-born daughter. I was very pleased with the result. All the photos were taken with natural lighting. Here are some of my favorites:





And one color shot of the three.



Thank you, A., for giving me this great opportunity.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Unexpected Excitement

Yesterday the boys were in the session #2 indoor soccer playoffs. The top 4 teams play for the age group championship. The boys' team had the 4th seed and was playing the undefeated #1 team - the winner of that game to play the winner of #2 vs. #3.

We all know that anything goes in sports. Teams have both good days and bad days. Well, our team had a GREAT day and took down the undefeated #1 seed with a 5-1 win. The #2 vs. #3 game was a nailbiter. We all watched the #3 team triumph over the #2 team in a crazy shootout.

The final game was a close one! It was tied 2-2 with minutes left and I was anticipating a sudden-death overtime and possibly a shoot out. But with 8 seconds left, the player who scored the first two goals was able to sink another one for us for the win. So exciting!!!!

Here is a picture of the team just before they played their second game.


And here are Jack, Ben and good buddy, Troy, posing in their championship T-shirts! What an unexpectedly exciting day!!!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

(Almost) Ten on Tuesday

Been some time since I did a 10 on Tuesday post. I haven't been taking a lot of pictures, but here is what we've been up to.

1. Our kitchen work is substantially complete and right at this very second the family room is being painted. All of the darker pine woodwork is being painted and I'm changing the family room walls to neutral from green. I'm so very excited about this change. Nothing like a new paint job to change and freshen up a room. Now, of course, I need to take down the kitchen wallpaper (which isn't much) and rehang the stuff on the walls so the whole thing is just done. And THEN I will post before and after pictures. I know of at least three people who are interested! Here's the before!

2. I really realize that my little Chica is just packed with growing attitude. She's still as cute as can be and melts my heart daily with the cute things she says and cute faces she makes. But her little two year old self is much different than her brothers were. I don't remember any of them finishing their words with a tone of attitude. Like if I tell her she needs to get some socks on she'll say "I know-WA". Or if I ask her to please pick up the game she'll say, "Okayyy-YUH". Little stinker. Look at this face of attitude...


3. We had a very small superbowl gathering and actually got to watch the game. I even saw the half-time show with The Boss and a lot of the commercials. Chris and I were reviewing the commercials on You-tube last night. Does anyone else think that almost every commercial had some kind of violence? Guys thrown from buildings...getting electrocuted...yikes. Here is my fav commerical



4. I have started some exercise tapes a couple weeks back called Ten Minute Trainers. I figured if I can't do at least ten minutes of exercise then that's pretty pitifull. I find a hard time making exercise/working out a priority. But I'm trying hard. The best motivation for me is that the kids like to do the tapes with me. If I could have videotaped the first time they tried the tapes you all would have gotten a good laugh. With comments like, "Oh, my ABs!!"..and "Do you see the lines yet (on my abs)?" What a complete riot. But here is a blurry picture of the boys doing some lunges.

5. Boston.com's contest theme for January was "Cold". I never got anything good but did submit a picture for the heck of it. It's a picture of Amy walking from behind down our stone walkway. I always liked it, but it probably has no right being in the contest. There are some really cool pictures, so if you are just a fan of photography you should check them out at Boston.com's RAW.


6. Ever have your street plowed by one of these? Geez, this would have been my boys' dream snowplow four years ago when they were into trucks!

7. A mom from my playgroup with Amy approached me about coming over to take pictures of her pregnant belly. I was thrown off by this request because I wasn't feeling super confident. I've never done anything like this and was frankly worried my pictures wouldn't come out that great. But I said yes because I wanted to try..and gain experience. Well, I am going to post some of the photos but I want to copy my friend, Deb, and figure out how to post bigger pictures to my blog. So...stay tuned.

8. Jack and Ben got the official word that they are in the session 2 finals for indoor soccer. Playing the tough first seed team this Saturday! Wish them luck...they'll need it!

9. & 10. I seriously can't think of anything else for today. How completely lame. Maybe I should start Five on Friday instead. I think I could complete 5...but 10 pains me.
So goodnight!