Happy Mother’s Day!

May 12, 2013

I especially love Mother’s Day for the priceless memories of Clare ensuring that my day is nothing but special.  She and my husband made quite the team in doing just that, once again.

Being a Mom and having a Mom are two incredible gifts from God for which I am forever grateful.

One of my favorites from Clare today…

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A Part of Us

April 30, 2013

Clare’s drawings and pictures are priceless to me as each and every one has a narrative story behind it (truly).  This may be one of my most favorite ones yet.  Why?  Allow me to narrate…

Family Portrait as Pets

Me:  “Clare, tell me about this drawing, look at that striped kitty cat!”  Note:  Nearly all of her kitty cat drawings are of Frankie and Wyeth (both big black fluffy cats).  We’ve never seen Clare illustrate a striped cat as she drew at school yesterday.

Clare:  “Let me tell you, Mommy.  Today…at the Y, we had to draw a picture of what our family would look like as our favorite pet.  So, you see, the big brown kitty is Daddy (“they didn’t have blonde color”) and the black kitty is you, Mommy.”  “Then, the striped kitty is me, because….I’m a part of you…. and….a part of Daddy.”

I was amazed at her recognition of being a part of each of us (while of course dying to know where on earth on all this thought process is coming from, during after-school nonetheless).

The remarkable mind of a child…always taking it all in.

Counting my blessings….

First Moments

April 28, 2013

I’m learning that the older Clare gets, the more unforgettable those new, first moments become.  Although I am seldom able to capture the ‘aha moments’ on video (simply because they now tend to happen so spontaneously) these are moments that make an indelible memory for me and an immediate confidence boost for Clare.  Here’s an example of the latest ‘first’….

Today, Clare figured out how to put her hair in a ponytail all by herself.  This was no easy feat, let me tell you.  She is (and always has been) all about having her hair in a ponytail when the weather is warm.  Somebody gets cranky awfully quickly when her hair makes her “sweated”.   She was so proud of herself this morning when she managed to successfully make a tight ponytail.  After I showed her how to loop her hair through that third time to help make sure it didn’t fall out, it was all over—she was skipping with confidence and repeatedly showing me and her Daddy what she can now do, all by herself.

At bedtime, “Mommy, keep track of that rubber-band because I want to wear that on my wrist tomorrow so I can use it to put my hair in a ponytail.”.  😉

Check out my ponytail!!

Another first this weekend, Clare got an Easy Bake Oven (thanks to the neighborhood yard sale!).  Her oven is setup in the kitchen precisely beside the real oven and she’s already baked 3 packets of hot pretzels.  The ingredients and timer have had to be exactly right; she has enjoyed everything about her own baking creations!

All so much better than a first moment that occurred last weekend; strep throat resulting in Clare’s first sick day from Kindergarten.   Missing school on Monday was far more devastating to her than the unprecedented sickness.  I wonder how long before she tries to fake being sick simply so she can stay home?!

Speaking of school, one of her most favorite firsts, her PopPop came to school on Friday to eat lunch with Clare.  An indelible first for both indeed.

A Day with Daddy

February 28, 2013

As February comes to an end, so does Clare’s third track-out period of Kindergarten.  Her first track out (in September) included an escape to the southern shores with her cousin and Auntie where Clare mustered up the courage to swim in the pool sans “floaties” and do a “cannon ball” jump off the side of the pool (yes, without the floaties) for the very first time (thanks to her cousin cheering her on!).

Clare’s second track-out (in November) included her 6th Birthday celebration followed by a 5-day road-trip with her cousins and Uncle on a tour of the North Carolina lighthouses.  Clare learned an unbelievable amount of history, visited historical North Carolina landmarks, made everlasting memories with her cousins and Uncle, all without the company of me or Robert.

Now, here we are in February embarking on her third track-out where the timing (nor weather) wasn’t quite right for a beach getaway, and, a trip to visit her cousins ended up being moved to March.  So, we decided to try out a new (new for us that is) track-out camp at a local church where a few of her buddies from Kindergarten would be attending.  We looked into this track-out camp previously but the drop-off and pick-up times were a bit tight with regards to our work schedules.  Thankfully, they now moved pickup to 5:00, although it was still tight, Robert and I were committed to giving it a try.  And…boy oh boy are we so grateful that we did!  As my family has heard me brag about continuously over the past 3 weeks…the track-out camp has been an unbelievable positive experience and blessing for Clare and has truly warmed my heart every day she’s been there.

While she has most definitely had a seriously FUN time at this track-out camp and has awaken every weekday morning asking “when are we leaving for camp?!”, her Daddy felt especially heavy-hearted about not being able to take her on a family trip.  So, he planned to take Thursday (today) off and spend the day with our big girl.

Today, they visited Raleigh’s finest “hot places” for kids (and Daddy’s)—-The first stop was Marbles Kids Museum where they found a ginormous Connect 4 game which happens to be Clare’s FAVORITE game that she and her Daddy play ALL the time…yes, Clare won the match yet again.  😉   This was followed by lunch at Big Ed’s City Market Restaurant (Clare’s first visit) where she devoured a regular portion of fish filet, butter beans, homemade applesauce, peach pie an a bunch of other yummy items (and was teary-eyed when she later remembered she forgot to eat the biscuit).  They then stopped by another Raleigh landmark restaurant, Krispy Kreme doughnuts where they savored the taste of the world renowned BEST doughnuts!

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Can this day with Daddy possibly get any better….??  But yes (almost), it ended with a game of Crazy Eights with Mommy.

Crazy Eights

Here’s to tomorrow—a new month and most importantly, her cousin’s 6th Birthday!!!!!

Holding onto 4

November 11, 2011

This year started off with a milestone birthday in our family  (the big 4 0 for me) and brings with it yet one more milestone birthday, one that is harder for me to comprehend—-our daughter turning 5.  A poignant reminder of how quickly time truly does fly by.  Our full of wonder, wide-eyed girl is growing up before our very eyes.  Although I haven’t been diligent in posting about the memorable moments with Clare this year, I have been extra diligent in soaking up the dwindling baby-ish times with her before we officially embark on the “big girl” years.  Here’s a slideshow of just a few of my favorite snapshots of our 4 year old.  😉

HaPpY HaLloWeEn!

October 31, 2011

Clare had her mind made up in the month of August as to what she would be for Halloween.  Excuse me, what “WE” would be for Halloween.  Rain or shine…there’s no stopping the trick-or-treating festivities.  Meet Daphne and friends…

As she was getting ready for bed, “Daddy…next year can we be the Backyardigans?”  😉

Fall Has Arrived

October 30, 2011

Our warm Indian summer days are no more…20 degree temperature shifts brought brisk cool fall weather our way this weekend.  The kind of weather that makes you want to stay indoors and purge the closets of summer clothes while having a pot of chili simmer on the stove.  OR…for a soon-to-be 5 year old…perfect weather for riding a jeep and painting some pumpkins!  Today was all about the outdoors for the big girl…

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Cracking Eggs

September 25, 2011

The memorable takeaway of our weekend—cracking eggs.  Clare had the idea of baking a cake for her all-time favorite babysitter  on Saturday (for her birthday).  The recipe called for three eggs…say no more, Clare went to town with trying to precisely crack each one.  Then, this morning, eggs (several) for breakfast, cracked by our little chef.  We made cupcakes this afternoon calling for yet more eggs.  It’s still a long way before she acquires the patience to be my little helper from start to finish, but cracking the eggs is one job she definitely loves.  As I was putting her to bed tonight…”Mommy, can we pretty please make something in the morning that needs eggs cracked?”  😉

Time for icing!

Finally, time for icing!

 

Sunday Smiles

Sunday Smiles

Remembering One Beautiful Day

April 20, 2011

On this day, nine years ago, my little sister became a beautiful bride, a love-struck newlywed and a wife.  I gained a new family member and am grateful beyond words for the family the two of them have created.  Happy Anniversary to my sister and brother-in-law!

Happy 9th Wedding Anniversary to my Beautiful Sister!

Spring is sure to follow

February 27, 2011

Carolina blue skies and mid-seventy degree temperatures outside made this last Sunday in February one to appreciate!  We are fortunate to have some of the North Carolina Greenway Trails nearby where we spend many weekend days running along side Clare as she pedals away on her bike.  I’m thinking the Tour de France may be on the horizon if she keeps up her relentless pace.  😉

Today, we packed up all three of our bikes (after dusting the cobwebs of mine) and headed to Falls Lake to introduce Clare to the mountain bike trails (beginner trails of course)!  Although Clare loved being in the woods, her little bike wheels were definitely not made for pine needle terrain.  So, Clare and I diverted to the pavement while her Daddy got an incredible workout on the trails.

Here’s a snippet of our little biker in action finishing her climb up a big hill (you can see why Robert and I decided we need to be on bikes with her…cannot keep up otherwise!)

The weather was simply BEAUTIFUL!!  Spring Fever indeed.  We had a fun picnic lunch lake-side and then Clare had a blast swinging  at the playground area.

And then, to top off the terrific day, as Clare is winding down before dinner we hear the catchy music coming from no other than The Ice Cream Truck!  A first for Clare and quite the treat.  A sure sign that Spring is just around the corner.

Ice Cream Truck