Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Birthday Cake Challenge - Year 5

The birthdays continue. This past weekend was Biscuits 30th birthday!! And you all know what that means – Birthday Cake Challenge!

The birthday cake challenge started in 2009 – yep, 5 YEARS AGO – with the crepe cake 

 Subsequent challenges have led us to the following tasty destinations:
This salty caramel chocolate goodness
The Rainbow cake - detailed here
Last year's Pavlova that I don't think I blogged about
This year biscuit sent me a recipe for a pineapple upside down cake. She must think I need a break because this only required me to follow a straightforward recipe. I even had a helper this year.
We made the cake and went to sing Happy Birthday and enjoy the cake.
It was good, but next time I’d probably search out a recipe that makes it in a cast iron skillet so the pineapple caramelizes and the sugar gets all crunchy on the outside edges. Next time, I’ll take your challenge and raise the bar.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Dear Maggie,

Oh my moo, you are so awesome. I am excitedly planning your first birthday, while simultaneously wondering where a YEAR went. While I do miss the snuggly, tiny infant you were, I’m really enjoying the toddler you are turning into. And who wouldn’t? You are such a happy baby. People are always commenting that they want to take you home. You have a light that shines and spreads joy. It is a guilty pleasure spending time with you. I’m soaking it all in before you tire of me and my patty-cake antics. Before I know it you’ll be rolling your eyes at me and stomping away.

The other day I got a glimpse of your future and it looked like a childhood that resembled my own – You were crawling furiously to catch up to your sister and your cousin. Hearing their giggles from the other room, you were determined. So determined in fact, you climbed that step into the kitchen like you had done it a hundred times before, quickly and adeptly, just to see what all the fuss was about.

Being the second born, I know. It’s hard always wanting to play with the big kids. I’m going to warn you now baby girl, you will get shut down, turned away and maybe ignored. But just like that step, you will conquer and be stronger because of it. And then there will be the times that Caroline plays with you and protects you. Those times will feel all the sweeter and will bond you two together, forever.  Sisters are a treasure. I should know, I have two of them!
There is this time of day that I love. It’s after you’ve eaten and your sister is settled into cartoons or a puzzle. I sneak away with you and your bottle to do our night-night routine. I change you into your PJs, not before I get in some good tickles, and we curl up in the rocker.  You kick and squirm as you eye the bottle. You even spit out your pacifier in preparation, only crying if I take too long and miss all your non-verbal cues. We rock together as you drink your nightly bottle. Sometimes you are so tired that once finished, you snuggle into my neck before transitioning to bed. If you aren’t too tired, then it is play time! I bounce you and nibble your neck until the room is filled with your laughter. It’s only about 15 minutes of the day, but it’s all ours.

I promise I will always look for ways to have one-on-one time with just you.

I love you.

The momma.


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Happy Birthday Love

To my partner in crime,

Happy Birthday! It’s hard to remember what my life was like before you!
I hope you aren’t underwhelmed by your birthday this year. I fear it will get lost in the new house/old house drama. Please know how thankful I am that you are in my life. I know I’ve been the high maintenance one lately. Thank you for keeping me grounded.
It’s funny how our birthday celebrations have changed through the years. Birthdays are more fun with kids, don’t you think? While we may be less than thrilled about another candle on the cake, their excitement is contagious. I can’t wait to sing happy birthday to you with Caroline, a smiling Maggie happy to be a part of the festivities.     

This year you won’t be showered with gifts, trips and parties. Instead there will be cake, candles, singing and all your girls surrounding you on this special day.
We love you.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

The Move

So we are OFFICIALLY in the new house. The address has been changed in all the required places and the kitchen is unpacked. There are boxes in every room. I know the majority of the boxes will remain untouched and continue to taunt me for years to come, but the KITCHEN IS UNPACKED.

So how is everyone handling it?

The cat’s first order was to pee on everything. He has now been banished to either the basement or outside. Since there are no feral neighborhood cats to fend off anymore, I think he’s quite happy.

The dog “ran away”. I use quotation marks because I think it was more of a casual meandering, smelling her way through the new neighborhood. No matter how casual it was on her part, we spent one long sleepless night exploring the neighborhood with flashlights. We didn’t find her. Instead, she found someone getting ready to leave for work at 4:45 AM!! They called us and Hubs hightailed it to pick her up.

The girls adjusted the best to the new house. It probably has something to do with our increased intake of fast food and more outside playtime.

My extrovert of a husband is socializing with all the neighbors and inviting everyone to tour our new castle. He’s generally enjoying the new digs.  

This girl? This routine, predictable, OCD, introvert? She is not handing it all so well. I’m like a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs, unable to get comfortable, relax and generally settle in. My anxiety is on overdrive. I’m contemplating medicating myself.

The list of what I want to do to the house is a mile long and I want to do it NOW. Conversely, I don’t want to spend all my valuable time doing house stuff and miss out on time with my baby girls. They are just growing too fast. I am paralyzed by enormity of it all.

Then there is the old house. The house we are trying to rent, but still doesn’t have a tenant. The house that can’t be ignored and needs cleaned, painted, maintained and PAID FOR.  Oh No, here comes the panic.

Please be kind to my family, they have a crazy woman to deal with right now.