1. After Disney World, we were all sick for WEEKS. The last night of our trip I came down with what I think must have been the flu; if not flu, something very similar... extreme hot, extreme cold, high fevers, chills, terrible aches... it is a wonder I made it home the next day because I felt miserable. And the next few weeks were much of the same; I felt better after a week and then came down with the worst sinus infection ever. In the meantime all of the kids were sick too; off and on fevers, colds, breathing treatments, the whole nine yards. I was ready to run away from winter. Forever.
2. When it's cold outside and you are sick inside, it is hard to find ways to pass the time. We did a lot of Pinterest activities and played many games of "Name that Disney Movie" or "Name that Disney Ride/Attraction" with the Magna-Doodle. We also introduced the kids to HeadBandz and Operation (the board games) and we let Emma Kate eat some Play-Doh.
Mary Ella loves this game. Sam can't really play because he doesn't understand (and he yells out everyone's character immediately), but Mary Ella gets really into it. You have a card on your head and you don't know who is on the card; you have to ask the other players yes or no questions in order to guess your character. I always laugh because her first questions are almost always "Do I have legs?" followed by "Do I have feet?" The girl cracks me up.
Doing some homework.
Oh, and we made our own version of Space Mountain from a box. Yes, desperate for indoor entertainment.
3. We made one trip up to the Compound in the midst of the sickness. Much needed escape from the walls of our
Emma Kate and her Daddy after church.
Sambo and Annsley Kate.
Emma Kate got her first taste of strawberry pie from Grandaddy.
She loved the swing.
I found the dresses my Mom smocked for my sister and me when we were almost these exact ages.
They were a little snug but I love seeing them on my girlies.
And then we pulled out Mary Ella's first Easter dress and bonnet.
Here's a comparison shot of both girls wearing this dress. (Mary Ella at 8 months, EK at 10 months)
4. This little monkey is all over the place. And into everything. She deserves her own post so I will give her just that... in the meantime, a few pictures.
5. When the kids were finally well enough to go back to school, I wasn't sure what to do with myself. And speaking of school, I'll have a KINDERGARTNER next year. Craziness. I've decided to keep her in private half-day kindergarten because we aren't quite ready (meaning MOMMA isn't quite ready) for the real world... (the school we were planning on attending only had 8am-11:45 K5 anyway so I decided to just keep her at the church school where she goes now.) The good news is she will be at the same place with Sambo... AND her sister will go one day a week. We are experiencing some major separation/stranger anxiety lately and I think a little Mother's Day Out will probably help that. We talked it over at Fire House Subs last week and she's on board. :)
Sam's love of glasses continues. He's worn these to school a couple times now. Stud.
And Mary Ella continues to live in her own little corner of Fantasy Land. During Community Helpers week at school, after learning all about doctors, mail men, firemen, policemen, etc, Ms. Staci had them fill out this "When I Grow Up" page. Mary Ella chose ...
I died laughing. And when I asked her about it, she was very matter-of-fact and serious:
"I'll either just learn to breathe under the water, or I'll be one of those above-the-water mermaids."
I mean, they're all over the community. And so helpful too.
She is a hoot.
I do love that her teacher is so encouraging, though, and I thought her note at the top was super sweet.
6. I went to Blue Ridge, Georgia with my girlfriends the first weekend in March. This getaway was MUCH needed and proved to be the perfect escape from every day life. We didn't lift a finger all weekend except to cook our meals, which was beyond awesome. I have a post coming on that. In the mean time you can read Katie's post here.
7. Consignment season is in full swing! Mom had a teacher conference in Montgomery last week, so on the way back she and Aunt Jennifer stopped by to see us and Mom ended up staying the weekend with us. We had planned to go junkin in all our favorite places. I declared it a national holiday.
On Friday night we hit the Riverchase UMC Consignment sale and found lots of goodies, which was surprising because the public sale had started that morning and I would've expected all the good stuff to be long gone. The clothes were still pretty picked over but we did end up with a lot of BBTN stuff as well as some smocked goodies.
Sam has been way into tools lately and his OT has recommended any toys that you have to turn/screw/etc, so when I saw this tool bench I jumped on it. (It is $130 at Toys R Us and I bought it for $30.) I'd been eyeing a tool bench at Ikea that didn't come with anything and it was $60 on its own so I'm glad I found this one! He loves it.
I found Emma Kate 3 pair of practically brand new shoes - Sun Sans sandals in hot pink and white, and a tiny pair of pink Crocs. These would have cost $85 total at retail stores... I scored them all for $23.
For some reason I sort of loved this vintage looking bubble. It was $3 so I splurged.
I also bought several $2 outfits for the girls and this huge book, which retails for $35.00 (it was $5.)
It is hardback and includes all of the Madeline stories. Mary Ella has loved them so far. Does anyone know where you can buy the movies? (the animated ones... I can't find them on Netflix or Hulu?)
The next morning Mom and I went to the Homewood COC yard sale. We decided we'd start making a list of all our finds over the weekend and what we paid vs. the actual estimated cost. It was pretty funny.
After the yard sale we went out to Roebuck Parkway to get our junkin' on. We didn't find anything huge but all of the small items we bought were high dollar items that we got for next to nothing - nice golf shirts from local golf clubs, a pair of Volatiles for me (that's the second pair I've found in Roebuck!), Keds for EK, lots of Easter decor, some small home stuff, and I even found some cute jungle green wedges and 3 dresses. It was a good day, as usual, on the Parkway.
8. We celebrated our sweet little friend Ally Grace's 1st birthday that afternoon with a party at Veteran's Park. The weather was perfect for a park party. The kids loved the cupcakes (and the endless supply of chips and Cheetos) and it was fun watching Ally open her gifts. She loves Minnie Mouse! I thought this headband was too cute.
9. Mom forced Chad and me to go on a date that night, so we decided to go to Bonefish Grille here in Birmingham. Hands down one of my favorite places. For a chain restaurant, they've got some off-the-chain dishes. If I'm lying on my death bed and I'm uttering 3 words but you can't quite make them out, just know that I'm probably saying "BANG BANG SHRIMP." Heaven on a plate.
We also ate salad and bread and sea bass and salmon and shrimp and scallops and tuna.
And the brownie. With ice cream.
We don't get out much. So when we do, we eat. A lot.
THEN, the next day after church we decided to try The Little Donkey in Homewood.
WOAH! This place is sooooo good. My new favorite Mexican joint, by far. It's owned by the Jim n Nick's dudes so you know it's good. All ingredients are fresh and local. Yums.
They serve 3 different types of salsas and I loved all of them. Red was probably my favorite.
Chad ordered the chile relleno.
With this side, known as La Concoccion... black beans, rice, cheese, scallions... with a poached egg on top. It was SO good. (This side is $1 extra.)
Mom and I ate the taco plate; you can pick from a few of their signature tacos; we both ordered the chicken stack taco and I also ordered a catfish, which was my favorite. It has pickled cabbage, fresh cilantro and some kind of awesome sauce on it.
And the CORN, PEOPLE. GO AND EAT THE CORN, NOW.
Fresh corn on the cob... rolled in butter, and queso fresco (cheese) and chili powder or something. Divine. I'm sure I looked like a little donkey as I gobbled up that corn and I didn't care one bit.
And, BONUS - next door to Little Donkey is Steel City Pops - a specialty popsicle shop.
I'd heard about it forever ago and I'm so glad we finally got to go. They were so good.
Mary Ella chose a blueberry...
I chose Mayhaw (some sort of Alabama berry), Chad got a blood orange, Sam got buttermilk (which tasted like a slice of melt-in-your-mouth cheesecake on a stick), and mom got a caramel one which was out of this world. Definitely worth going!
10. Sam has transitioned into his big boy bed. This wasn't exactly planned either, but during the sick weeks I was having to change his crib sheet like every single day because of snot (lovely) and I finally got sick of it. Changing a crib sheet is about the equivalent of wrestling a wildebeest. And I didn't even have bumpers on his bed! With bumpers it's like wrestling 5 wildebeests. Don't even get me started. So we started by changing out the rail on his crib to the toddler rail... and he did well with that for a couple weeks so when I saw this toddler bed on Craigslist for $25 I decided to go ahead with the toddler bed. (I couldn't see spending money on a twin when I know that in a couple years he will get Mary Ella's twin bed and she and EK will have a big bed to share.) Plus this is so much easier for him to get in and out of with his upper body strength being not so great.
Anyway, it was oak. I primed and painted it by hand (shocker, I know). I used Zinsser Primer and I chose a blue color for the bed. I thought I wanted red originally but he has red wall shelves and a red piece of furniture in his room so this was my next choice. I love it! And of course with the new bed came a room re-do.... which I will blog about sooner than later. :)
It's supposed to be BEAUTIFUL this weekend! I am so excited!