Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Tuesday with Julia

Julia had a doctor's appointment about an hour north of where we live.  The bad news about having such an appointment at 11:00 a.m.?  She had to miss an entire day of school.  The good news about having an appointment so far north?  We found a great place to eat lunch only five minutes away . . .
 When we got home from her appointment, Julia had time to play with both her toys and the feisty, fired-up kitty.
 Then we headed up to the bus stop - in the rain - to wait for Evelyn.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Doll Tea Party

Another Monday afternoon, another day for the girls to play outside (after finishing homework).  Today Julia wanted to bring all of the dolls outside for a tea party.  Looks like everyone is having a good time!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Tooth #2 Is Out!

Julia has been messing with her second wiggly tooth for a couple of weeks, now.  In just the past week, I had tried three times to pull it out, but it wouldn't budge.  That ornery tooth was bothering Julia again tonight, so I got aggressive with the tooth.  It took two attempts, but I finally got it out.  The new/adult tooth was already growing in behind this loose tooth, so it was definitely time for it to come out!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

39th Birthday

The girls didn't have time to prepare/bake/make a birthday cake (blame homework and ballet), so instead they ordered a cake from the local grocery store (I stepped away so it would be a surprise).  They did well - blue is my favorite color, and the cake inside was chocolate - also my favorite.  We didn't put 39 candles on the cake, but we put a few on there to make it festive.  It was a perfect ending to a busy, fun-filled birthday day.

Lion King Musical

I have been wanting to see the Lion King musical for many, many years.  Probably 17 years, to be exact (aka, how long it's been playing).  Fast-forward to this past May, when I found out that Lion King was coming to Boston.  And it would be playing in Boston on my birthday.  You know I bought tickets right away.....and then settled in for a 4-month wait.....

Today was the big day!  We headed into the city a little before the show so we could enjoy a nice lunch at Legal Seafood (which is directly across the street from the Boston Opera House).
 All four of us Lusters thoroughly enjoyed the show.  It closely followed the movie, and the girls especially enjoyed seeing how different parts of the movie were interpreted for the stage.
After the show, we bought each girl a program, and they both looked through their books on the train ride out of the city.  It was a wonderful show and a wonderful birthday present from the family.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Silly Stuff

The girls wanted to dress as twins today.  Mission accomplished!
 Rosie is such a goofy cat.  She didn't mind being pinned to the floor by our resident ballerina.  Silly cat.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Caramel Apple Trifle

A couple of weeks ago, I came across a recipe for caramel apple trifle.  I liked the overall idea for the trifle, but I needed to tweak a few things.

Pictured below are all of the ingredients for my trifle:
* Homemade spiced apples - using 4 Granny Smith apples
* Baked spice cake - I used about 2/3 of the 9x13-inch cake
* Whipped topping
* Homemade caramel
* Pudding - I followed the directions on a 3.3-ounce package of vanilla pudding, plus I added 1/2 cup of the homemade caramel
* Toffee bits
The layers went as follows . . .
- Cut-up cake
- Pudding
- Caramel
- Toffee bits
- Whipped topping
The verdict?  Delicious!  Well, three of us thought it was delicious.....Julia just wanted to eat the leftover (plain) spice cake.

Teddy Bear!

Julia's teacher called me this morning at 8:53.  Why?  Today was the day the students could bring a stuffed animal to school . . . which Julia and I had completely forgotten about.  Oops!  Julia's teacher had called to ask if I could bring Julia's teddy bear to school - yup!  He hopped in the car, and I whisked him off to school lickety-split.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Kitty Homework Therapy

Evelyn had some challenging math homework after school today.  Since Rosie is such an easy-going cat, I scooped her up and put her on Evelyn's lap.  Just as I had hoped, the kitty therapy helped calm Evelyn down.  She still had to complete a tough assignment, but she didn't get as frustrated.  (And look how calm Rosie is - just like I thought, she was happy to help!)

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Ice Cream for a Good Sport

Julia's reward for playing soccer in the (warm) rain today:  ice cream.  We didn't want to drive far for the sweet treat, so we just hit up the Dunkin Donuts in town.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Clothes Shopping for Peanut

It's that time of year, again.  Time to find cool-weather clothes for the growing Evelyn.  I have been window-shopping at the outlets, and based on Evelyn's height (5' 1"), I knew she wouldn't fit in the clothes at the kids' stores there.  So today we spent an hour and a half at Old Navy, picking out and trying on jeans, shirts and dresses.  Our excursion was a success, and now Evelyn will be ready for whatever weather Massachusetts throws her way.  (Julia is all set with the hand-me-down clothes that are waiting for her.)

Friday, September 19, 2014

The Best Chocolate Frosting Recipe

A few weeks ago, I came across a chocolate frosting recipe that I wanted to try.  I finally got around to making it for a batch of cupcakes today.  The verdict?  AmAzInG!  This one is a keeper, for sure.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

1st Grade Open House

Tonight was Open House at Julia's school.  Before they opened to doors to let the crowd inside the school, the kids had a chance to show off the playground.  Julia could do about three monkey bar rungs before falling off - not bad!
 And she told us that Monday is the day her class can climb on the web structure.  Apparently it is very popular, so they have to limit it one class per day.
 Once inside, Julia showed us all around her 1st-grade classroom.  She has a "real" desk this year, and Julia was excited to show us where she keeps her school box and folders.
 After wandering around the classroom, checking out all of the different learning areas.  Our last stop was Julia's first stop in the mornings - her coat hook and cubby.  We had fun with our tour guide, seeing where Julia spends her school days.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Sidewalk Chalk Buddy

We seem to have extra play time on Mondays, between the girls finishing homework and Evelyn's 6:30 ballet class.  This afternoon it was a beautiful day, so the girls busted out the sidewalk chalk and decorated the driveway.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Soccer Day!

Sunday afternoons this fall are dedicated to Julia's soccer games...
 ...with me as one of the assistant coaches.
 At this point, Julia doesn't get too many touches on the ball, but she certainly has fun running around, being close to the ball.  Evelyn snapped this picture of Julia as she was going in for a power kick.  Julia loves soccer, loves going to practice and loves donning her uniform every Sunday - so we will continue to encourage her in her favorite sport!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Evelyn's Salon Haircut

This morning, I treated Evelyn to a hair cut at the salon I go to.  She loved being pampered with a wash, cut and style.
 The stylist did a great job blowing out Evelyn's hair, giving it just a touch of curl on the ends.  We also got some shampoo and conditioner that will work well with Evelyn's ever-changing hair.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Julia's Eye Exam

Julia has been experiencing migraines lately, and he pediatrician referred her to an ophthalmologist to see if her mildly lazy eye is the reason behind her migraines.  The good news is, Julia has as close to perfect vision as a six-year-old can have (no glasses!).  The bad news is, today's doctor didn't have an explanation for Julia's migraines.  She has an appointment with a neurologist later this month to see if we can find the reason Julia gets headaches.

Rosie Kicks Us Out

A couple mornings a week, Rosie kicks us out of the house.  She sit by our shoes or on the stairs, waiting for me to walk the girls to the bus.  Julia and Evelyn say that, if Rose were a dog, she might physically push us out the door.  I have a feeling they're right!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Homework Station

Now that both girls will be doing homework at the same time, and also knowing how easily school supplies get misplaced, we have a new system in place.  I collected all of the supplies in the picture below for less than $10 - the cost was low because I hit the school supply clearance shelves.  All of the supplies stay in the pencil bag, and the pencil bag lives in one of the kitchen drawers.
 It's really easy to grab the school supply bag from the kitchen and bring it to the table to do homework.  Julia and Evelyn understand that these supplies are intended for homework, and if they want to create art, they will continue to use their regular art supplies (which are kept in their art room).  Hopefully this makes homework life a little easier for the girls.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Julia the Ballerina

Julia is still on the fence about which dance discipline she wants to do.  Since ballet is the root of all dance, and she has really good form for a six-year-old, she enrolled in Pre-Ballet for this year.  Evelyn remembers that ballet as a 1st-grader isn't very exciting, so she continues to remind Julia that she needs to learn the basics (and do them well) before progressing to the "exciting" ballet skills.  We'll see how this year pans out - you never know with Julia!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Pre-Pointe Ballet Class

Today marked the next step of Evelyn's ballet studies at Franklin School of Performing Arts.  This ear she is enrolled in "Ballet II," which also includes a pre-pointe class.  She has ballet three times a week, with five hours of class each week.  Evelyn's goal is to strive to be the absolute best ballerina she can be, and she takes her ballet classes very seriously.  She is excited to think that she will become a pointe dancer in the next year or two . . . all depending on how much she excels in this year's classes.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Opening Day of Fall Soccer

Today was Julia's first fall soccer game on the Green Team.  As each season goes by, she gets a little more assertive.  However, I think her favorite part of the game is eating orange slices at half-time.
 Julia is on a pretty good team this Fall, and they won their game today.
 All in all, a happy little soccer player!

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Full Cobra Pose

In my yoga class this morning, the teacher encouraged us to try full cobra pose.  I knew there was no chance of me being able to do that pose, but when I got home, I challenged Evelyn to try it.  With her amazingly flexible back, she was able to do it, no problem at all.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Julia's First Tooth Fairy Visit

What an exciting way to end the first week of school - by losing a tooth!  Julia's lower, front right tooth has been very wiggly lately, and this evening she was brave enough to have me pull it out.

 Now, at the ripe ol' age of six years, four months, Julia is finally ready for her first visit from the tooth fairy.  (And you can see that Teddy Bear is helping out with the tooth pillow.)

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

First Day of School 2014!

Evelyn is ready for 5th grade!  (And she's not nearly as nervous as she was last year - whew!)
 And somebody else is ready to go to school all day . . .
 . . . Julia, the 1st-grader!
 Sweet sisters, walking hand-in-hand to the bus stop.
 Both girls wanted to be first in line at the bus stop, anxious to get their day started.  Good luck, girls, and have a great first day of school!

Monday, September 1, 2014

'Twas the Day Before School . . .

We Lusters had a few things to do before the first day of school (tomorrow), like shop for new kicks . . .
 . . . take a dip in the pool . . .
 . . . and pack lunch.  Sweet dreams girls, as you get ready for the 1st and 5th grade!