Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Glinda Costume - Part III

I know it may not look like much, but I finished sewing the bodice of Evelyn's Glinda costume today. The bodice has five pieces, and the (front and back) side panels were a bit tricky to sew without getting the material all bunched up. The sides won't get stitched together until I finish the arms . . . which is the next item of business . . .

Browsing the Ads

Julia loves getting into all sorts of mischief. And she loves wandering around the house in order to find as many things as possible to get into. The best way to contain our little tornado is to put her on the island in the kitchen (carefully supervised, of course).

Since I had already looked through this week's ads, I let Julia at 'em. She was most interested in the flyer with cats and dogs. As she pointed to the animals, she said, "Woof woof," or "Meow." We knew she was done browsing the ads when she kept pushing them off the island. Then we had to set her free so she could find the next spot of trouble!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Glinda Costume - Part II

I continued with the planning part of Evelyn's costume today. I cut out the pattern pieces for the taffeta dress - I'll cut out the tulle material later, after I have finished the taffeta layer of the Glinda dress. Now that the easy parts are over with, I am ready to decipher the instructions and start sewing.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Birthday Cake

Evelyn is almost old enough to make a cake by herself. She is a great assistant in the kitchen. However, she isn't quite ready to tackle making and baking something completely on her own. Therefore, with the help of my sous chef, I baked a chocolate cake for my birthday. We followed a new recipe, and it turned out pretty well. Evelyn insisted that I have blue frosting on my cake since blue is my favorite color. I liked it - it looked fancier than plain ol' white buttercream frosting.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Glinda Costume - Part I

Over a month ago, Evelyn mentioned that she wanted to be a ghost for Halloween. How easy would that be? And very weather-appropriate for late October in Maryland since you can layer warm clothes under the costume without adding bulk.

A couple of weeks ago, after watching The Wizard of Oz, Evelyn changed her mind. At first, she wanted to be Dorothy . . . again. Evelyn was Dorothy for the past two years; she fit into the same costume when she was three- and four-years-old.

If she wanted to dress up as Dorothy for a third year in a row, I would have to make a new costume. There is no way Evelyn would fit into the costume from the two previous years. If I'm going to sew a new costume, why not be something different? Like, say, Glinda the Good Witch? You already have a silver magic wand? (And I already have the necessary sewing pattern.) Sold!
If you have ever sewn something from a pattern, you probably know that the first step is all about planning. You need to make sure you have all the right materials and accessories (I'm about 75% of the way there), and you need to go on a scavenger hunt to find all the correctly-numbered pieces of the pattern. So there's a picture of the planning stage of Evelyn's Glinda costume. I almost didn't find all the pieces, but eventually number 15 showed up. Whew!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Chipmunk Sighting

When we got back from walking Evelyn home from school this afternoon, our resident chipmunk was perched on our living room windowsill. Always the clever one, Evelyn suggested that we quietly sneak into the house, where we could get a closer look at the little guy. The plan worked! Julia was a little timid to get close to the chipmunk, probably not realizing that he couldn't go through the glass window. But Evelyn just stared and stared at the chipmunk until he ran away.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


When I spied on my girls tonight, here is what I found: two little angels, fast asleep.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Backwards Meal Time

Our little Julia rarely refuses foods. She is willing to try new things, and she usually likes them. Evelyn, on the other hand, is our picky eater. She will hesitantly try a bite of a new food, but then, more times than not, she refuses to eat any more.

Tonight was opposite night at supper. Evelyn was all about eating watermelon. Since Julia looked interested in this new, red fruit, we gave her a piece. Not only did Julia make a horrible face, but she spit out the watermelon. And Evelyn is the one who ate all of it. That hardly ever happens!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Story Break

All those who know Julia, know how much she loves books. I recently pulled out a touch-and-feel, lift-the-flaps Halloween board book. I tossed it on the coffee table with the other board books that live there. Julia noticed the new book immediately. She picked it up, toddled over to the stairs, and plopped down on the first step. This is a perfect perch for Julia to sit and read a story - and she loved pointing out the kitties and pumpkins in the book.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Nebraska/Virginia Tech Football Game

Troy and I drove out to Blacksburg, Virginia to watch the Nebraska football game today. It took about four hours to drive there, which wasn't too bad. Parking once we got there? Well, that was interesting. We walked for a little over 30 minutes (probably two miles) from our parking place to the stadium - and that was the closest we could get!

We got to the stadium with plenty of time to spare. This picture was taken while the stadium was still filling up. By the start of the game, it looked like every single seat was occupied.The game was quite a nail-biter, which made for lots of yelling and screaming on my part. However, all of my cheering did not help Nebraska in the end. The Hokies took the lead with 22 seconds left in the game, and the Huskers lost 16-15. But we still had a good time at the game.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Park Fun

We are so lucky to have a nice park just a few steps from our house. Whenever the weather is nice, we girls head over there in the afternoons (especially now that the pool is closed for the season).

Since Julia recently starting walking, she can now do her own thing at the park. After setting her loose in the middle of the park, I stay close by so that she won't get into too much trouble. Julia likes to collect wood chips in her pockets, she attempts to climb monkey bars, and she successfully climbs one of the playground structures in order to go down the slide.

Mind you, Miss Independent can climb this piece of equipment unassisted, and then she can go down the slide all by herself. Here is a picture of Julia counting (one, two three!) before zipping down the slide.

Evelyn usually plays her own games, sometimes alone, sometimes with friends, sometimes with Julia. Today, Evelyn had fun blowing bubbles and chasing after them.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


The B. & O. Railroad Museum hosted a KidsFest this weekend, which we couldn't miss. There were so many fun things for us to do there. Evelyn grabbed some Thomas coloring sheets, and she had a balloon flower made for her. We went on a mile-long train ride, which is the historic first mile of railroad track laid in the country. The train ride was narrated, which gave us (meaning Troy and me) some insight to the history of Baltimore's importance in railroading. I think the girls simply enjoyed the ride.
Evelyn rode on a kiddie-train ride, which she barely fit into because she's so tall. But you can tell by the genuine smile on her face that she loved it. This mini-train ride was followed by jumping in a bounce house and getting a Thomas tattoo on her arm. Evelyn also enjoyed checking out the outdoor model train . . . Today, Thomas and his friends were riding the rails.

A kids' concert started around noon, which we couldn't miss. Julia didn't want to be right in front of the stage, plus she wanted to play with rocks, so here is a picture of her dancing and busting a move in the rocks.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Walking Really Well, Now

As I mentioned earlier, Julia just started walking. She has been practicing a lot over the past five days, toddling all over the place. Julia now walks so well that the only thing that stops her is when something is in the way.

This video was taken this afternoon.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Julia's First Steps

For about the past week, Julia would take one unassisted step to reach a toy on a table or the couch. Today, she challenged herself and took several steps before falling down. She is simply thrilled with her new mode of transportation.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

The Rangers Come to Baltimore

The Texas Rangers played the Orioles this afternoon, and we headed up to Baltimore to see Evelyn's favorite baseball team.

This was everyone's first trip to Camden Yards, so I just had to take a picture of the front of the stadium. Evelyn completed the photo op.
There was no way we girls were going to wear anything but red, white and blue to today's game - we had to show support for our team. Troy even found a Rangers baseball cap for me to wear, just so there wouldn't be any confusion about which team we were rooting for.

We all had our share of stadium fare at today's game: hot dog, chicken fingers, fries (Julia is munching on one in the picture below), lemonade, peanuts and ice cream. Thankfully the four of us shared all of that food, so nobody ended up with a tummy ache.
Evelyn has been to so many baseball games that I've lost count. She knows how to watch the game and be considerate of the other fans. As for Julia, this is only her third game. And she's a baby. A baby who likes to crawl around and get into trouble. That said, Julia did amazingly well at today's game. She was perfectly content hanging out on me, eating, or playing with her sippy cup of water, or yelling, or clapping, or waving to the people around us.
Even though our Rangers lost the game 7-0, we still had fun. Here's proof that we were still in good spirits at the end of the game:

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Back to Hiking

The weather this morning was too perfect to not go to Sugarloaf Mountain. After Troy and I decided to tackle a hiking adventure, I packed a picnic lunch, and we scooted out the door. We have found that the trails aren't too busy in the morning - usually before lunch - and that was the case again today. We started our hike around 11:15 this morning, and hardly anyone else was on our favorite trail.

Even though we already have several pictures of various Sugarloaf Mountain hiking trips, I couldn't leave the camera at home. Here are some of my favorites from today:
I carried Julia on the way up, and Troy carried her on the way down. An additional 25 pounds makes a huge difference when you're climbing a mountain!

Evelyn thought this looked like a good place to take a picture. I thought it looked like a good place to take a break.
Here's Julia, our newest rock climber. This proved to be more of a challenge than she wanted, especially after nearly falling backwards a couple of times. Thank goodness I was there to catch her!
I helped the little adventurer find a shady rock to sit on. She didn't move from this spot, playing with pebbles on the ground. Here she is, happily showing off one of her finds.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Frustrating Shopping Trip

Julia frequently goes shopping at the grocery store with me, but today was the first time she got upset. See, she now recognizes all sorts of different foods and their containers or wrappers. So she had a hard time understanding why all of this yummy food (and milk!) was behind her in the shopping cart, but I wouldn't let her eat any. She fussed quite a bit, including crying real tears, but somehow she figured out she wasn't going to get to eat anything while at the store. In my opinion, that's a very good lesson to learn, it's just tough when Julia is so young.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Rough Day

Today was a rough day for Evelyn.

Her first incident occurred in the cafeteria at lunch time. As she sat down at her table, she scooted over to make room for a friend. While sliding down the seat, Evelyn leaned against what she thought was the back of the seat. The picnic-table style seat doesn't have anything for her to lean against, so she fell backwards, right off of her seat. She hit her head on the floor, and then she cried and cried. Whenever a student hits his or her head, it's an automatic pass to the nurse's office. That's where Evelyn ate her lunch, supervised by the nurse to make sure everything was alright. Evelyn was fine (she doesn't even have a bump from where she bonked the floor), and she was able to join her friends for recess.

The second thing happened at the back-to-school picnic this evening. The weather couldn't have been better, and there was a pretty big turn-out for tonight's event. Our family of four enjoyed the pizza and music, followed by fun on the playground equipment and the soccer field. By 7:30, Julia was ready to leave, so Troy headed home with her. I stayed at the school with Evelyn so she could play a bit longer. I chatted with a couple of moms while Evelyn monkeyed around on the bars and slides. Before long, I couldn't see Evelyn anywhere. After a few minutes, I started to get concerned. Who should walk up to me right about then but the principal with a crying Evelyn in tow. She had wandered pretty far from where I was, and she got scared because she couldn't find me. Thankfully she was able to tell the principal what I was wearing, and he was able to spot me in the crowd of parents and students.

The poor girl had quite a trying day. Hopefully her Friday will be much better!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Whenever you want to get a picture of Julia doing something specific (like standing by herself), you have to be quick. She is a baby on a mission, with places to go and things to do. She changes her activities fairly often. This makes picture-taking a little tricky.

Lately, I've felt like the paparazzi, taking my camera with me all around the house, hoping to get a shot of Julia standing up. I finally got her this morning! There she was, standing in the kitchen, and the camera was right there on the counter. So here's proof that our little Sunshine can stand up on her own: