Friday, August 28, 2009

Wolf Trap

Lord of the Rings at Wolf Trap...what a great experience! Wolf Trap is a National Park for the performing arts. It has an open air theater, similar to the Hollywood Bowl except it has a balcony that is covered. Only the lawn sections are without a roof.

Now, why would you go and pay $28 dollars a person (plus 7 hours of babysitting) to watch a movie that you already own on DVD with a few hundred other people, sitting on the lawn on an evening that is threatening rain?? Because it is cool! All the music is live, they even brought in a choir and soloist. I loved looking down at the orchestra and watching them beat these enormous drums for all the Mordor scenes.

Here is a blurry picture of our friends, Melinda & Jeremy (we obviously asked the wrong person to take our picture). We went together last year and watched Fellowship of the Ring. And we plan to go next year for Return of the King.

Crazy picture of the movie.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

More NYC

After a good nights sleep, we started our morning in Central Park, letting the girls play at all the different playgrounds.

Next stop, FAO Schwartz. This is the big toy store from BIG where Tom Hanks is playing chopsticks on the floor piano.

This is the very cute dress-up that caused a huge tantrum when we took it off. I just couldn't see spending $35 for something I could make for about $5.

The largest stuffed animal ever!

It's the Hogwarts gang out of Legos!

After doing lots of things for the girls and things for Clay, the one thing I wanted to do was eat good food. We made reservations for Mesa Grill, Bobby Flay's restaurant (thanks Melinda!).

Clay started with the Barbecued pork and oaxaca cheese quesadilla.

I started with the Tomato-tortilla soup.

Then Clay had the grilled red snapper.

And I had the sweet potato ravioli.

We ordered a plain quesadilla and fries for the girls. All the food was wonderful, and as Clay pointed out, everything we ordered had cilantro. Maybe that's why I liked it so much :) Funny thing about cilantro, it seems people either love it or hate it. I for one LOVE it!

Monday, August 24, 2009

New York City

For Emma's birthday we promised to take her to the American Girl Place in New York. We left Sunday after church and spent the night at Uncle Jay's apartment.

In the morning we spotted this crazy sculpture at the south end of Central Park.

First stop, American Girl Place. Emma brought her birthday money and more that she had been saving and spent it all at the store. She loved it!!

The #1 thing she wanted was to have her picture taken with Felicity for the cover of their magazine. Emma picked out their outfits before we left. I think she did a great job of matching colors! The rest of her money she spent on modern clothes for Felicity.

Next stop, the Nintendo store. Clay and Emma had a great time playing the new Resort Sport game on the Wii.

I had a not so great time chasing Rebekah around the store and hoping she doesn't break anything. Then she found Pikachu :)

Third stop, M&M World. If you know Clay, you know this was very high on his list!

We let the girls create their own mix of m&m's. Emma ended up with the same colors she and Felicity were wearing!

We stopped for lunch at Ellen's Stardust Diner (thanks to the Monks for the tip). It was a fun diner like Johnny Rockets where all the wait staff are trying to make it on Broadway and sing karaoke non-stop. Finally, we took the girls to Top of the Rock so they could see just how big the city is.

Emma looks like a professional NYC shopper!

I had no idea that they keep the ball in Times Square all year!!

It was very hot at the Top of the Rock. Probably b/c we are up so high. Walking around on the ground was a perfect temperature. I guess all the buildings keep it shaded and cooler.

The girls were tired by now. We went back to the apartment so the girls could take a nap. I got a long nap in, but the girls just played with Clay.

For dinner we took the metro to Little Italy for some new york style pizza.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Hershey Park

We spent the day at Hershey Park. We had so much fun! Clay went off on his own to ride a couple of the big rides in the morning. So I took the girls to all the kiddie rides. They had a blast. It was really a fun park, and not crowded at all. Of course we did have to take shelter for about an hour when we had a downpour. I am just so used to the lines at the amusement parks in California that this looked like Disneyland on a dead day. I loved how they also had lots of trees to shade everything too. And tons of benches by all the rides.

The girls LOVED this ride!

They also had a great water park that is INCLUDED with your admission (again, so unlike CA). We had a relaxing time going around the Lazy River about 6 or 7 times. Then Emma and I went on this water slide called the Whirlwind. It was awesome. You're on a two-man raft going through a long and windy tunnel (I was backwards for all of it!) and then it drops you into a giant funnel! And when I say drop, I mean it. We were completely airborne. When we got off the ride Clay said Emma looked like she just saw someone get killed. But she liked the ride.

Here we are at the end of the day!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Chocolate World

Now that I am feeling better, we drove up to Hershey, PA and went to Chocolate World. We went on their little tram ride to learn about how they make their chocolate. Emma actually really enjoyed learning about the process. Then we bought some chocolate. Yum. We found a place for dinner and then back to the hotel for our big day tomorrow.


I have had Mono for the last 2 weeks. I started feeling sick a few hours after Emma's birthday party was over. I went to the doctor for my sore throat, she put me on antibiotics and it just got worse. And I was tired all day. I finally tested positive for mono. I started taking Vitamin C and Acidophilus, and Clay made me several fruit smoothies and gave me a Priesthood blessing with the missionaries. That seemed to do the trick, because it only less than 2 weeks. I am finally feeling better, so we are going to go out and have some fun!

Some fun facts about Mono: Once you get it, you aren't supposed to get it again, just like chicken pox. Clay didn't get sick at all because he got it in college. Of course, I had chicken pox twice... Mono has an incubation period of up to 4-7 weeks! You want to get mono as a kid, it will only be like any other cold or flu and then you are done. We think the girls got it first and passed it to me, because they did have the appropriate symptoms a week before me. When you get it as an adult (usually late teens and early twenties), that is when you get the sore throat and tiredness. If you take some types of penicillin when you have mono (b/c the Dr thinks you have strep) you can develop a rash over your body. Many people who think they are allergic to penicillin may have simply had mono at the time and didn't realize it.

I am so thankful that is over! And I am thankful it only lasted 2 weeks!

The Tooth Fairy!

Yeah, her tooth finally came out!! Emma was actually drinking juice when she felt something floating around in her mouth. Good thing she didn't swallow it!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Just chillin'

Rebekah loves freezer pops. However, I refuse to let her eat them inside the house. Just way too messy. So whenever she wants one I send her out on the deck. Today, I watched her as she created her perfect spot for eating her freezer pop...

Friday, August 14, 2009

Tooth Fairy...where are you??

Emma is now 7 years old and has still not lost a tooth yet. Most of her friends lost teeth in Kindergarten. She is now getting ready to start 2nd grade and that darn tooth still hasn't fallen out yet. It has been loose since Christmas time. But it's got to be soon...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Strange things are happening...

2 year olds are full of surprises. I went into the bathroom and found this...
Not sure when this happened or why. Maybe she was just trying to hide the mess she made when she unrolled the roll.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Happy Birthday Emma!

Today you turn 7 years old! We love you!!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Special Guest

I went outside today to turn on the grill for dinner. I pulled off the grill cover and let out a scream as I saw a little grey blob on the side prep-table. Once the initial scare was over, I saw that it was a cute little tree frog (or a toad, we never can tell). I called the girls out for a look. Rebekah walked right up and tried to pick him up. I stopped her before it happened. Then I carefully prodded him off the prep-table because I didn't want to cook him with my chicken. He finally jumped down to the deck and landed next to the wheel of the grill. He stayed there almost the whole time I was cooking. Cute little guy.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Emma's Birthday Party

Emma wanted an American Girl doll "Tea" Party for her birthday. Here is all the food I made.

Pretzels with the girls' initials, sugar wafer cookies, individual Oreo doll cakes, doll sized doughnuts (cheerios), birthday cake, hot chocolate and apple juice. Each girl also got their own tea cup and saucer (I searched our local thrift stores and got each set for less than a dollar).

After the girls arrived we made necklaces and bracelets for the girls and their dolls.

Reagan, Emma (Rebekah), Elizabeth, Georgia, and Olivia.

The girls had a lot of fun practicing good manners while enjoying their "tea".

Happy 7th Birthday Emma! We love you!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Working on the cake

Clay took a picture of me while I was working on Emma's cake.

I thought I should tell you just how much time it takes to make a cake like this. First I spent 5 hours last week making 270 royal icing violets. Next came the actual baking and frosting of the cake (I forgot to time how long that took). Finally, I spent about 2 more hours assembling the cake, individually attaching all 270 violets to the cake. And the end result:

Yes, this is a lot of time to spend on a cake, but I wanted to. I bought a cake decorating book about 3 years ago. This cake was in the book, and the whole reason why I bought the book. I am glad I finally had the opportunity to make this cake for someone I love :)