Saturday, March 29, 2008

Sicilian countryside.. a photo shoot

I got up early today to find bright sunny skies and gorgeous flowers everywhere as it's been raining a lot lately. I was really wishing I had some great park to take the kids to for the day so I decided to pack up a few sandwiches and drive into the hills. I was driving along and saw this huge field of flowers next to a seemingly abandoned orange grove about a half hour from here and just pulled over and got to shooting! I took lots of pics. Here are a few favorites.

Now be nice.. I am just learning how to fix the lighting and really had some issues since it was *so* bright. Unfortunately there is a shadow in their faces most of the time. ahh well. I wanted to share anyway because the scenary was just gorgeous, and Valerie had such a fantastic time. We had a great day!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Conversations with Valerie

When did she grow up? Just a month ago it was almost impossible to have a conversation with Valerie. She has truly learned the art of 'story telling' recently and I am enjoying our little conversations that we have these days. While her behavior has been down right naughty and stubborn at times, her curiosity and questions completely amaze me and make me laugh every day.

Here was our conversation just now before bed time:

L: Valerie it is time for bed. Do you want to take the book upstairs with you?

Val: I read it. Wait for mama. Stay bed now.

L: Yes Valerie, you stay in bed. Do not get out of bed and come downstairs. You need to wait for mommy to come get you.

Val: Mama stay inside. Wait tomorrow. Wait for Valerie outside. Valerie and mommy outside tomorrow. Wagon tomorrow. Park tomorrow. ok momma?

L: Okay Valerie. We will take the wagon to the park tomorrow. Now go to bed please.

Val: Momma door stay shut. Lock door. Momma stay inside. Wait for Valerie. Park with Valerie.

L: Mommy will not go to the park without you, I promise. I love you.

Val. (going upstairs) : Wait Momma. Bye bye. Wait. Valerie to park. night night.


Thursday, March 27, 2008

Pics! and more pics!

Here are some (ok a lot) of photos of Ellie's first birthday and a shot of the dressed up girls on Easter. Unfortunately my camera is really about dead and I had to throw out 75% of them from Easter morning as they were out of focus. However.. Derrick bought me a NEW wonderfully amazing camera and it got here yesterday!! I warn you now because once I know how to use this thing, I will be a photo freak! Thankfully Jannelle Reed took most of these photos for us at the party.

Her party was a lady bug theme. The kids got to wear "bug antenna" when they got there, consisting of those little headbands with pompoms on top, all ordered from oriental trading company (thanks, Mom). Each toddler got to put together a little bug house and we had a hunt for fake bugs in the backyard. They really got in to it! We played pin the spot on the lady bug and colored lady bug pictures. All ended with cupcakes (we were supposed to decorate them to look like bugs but they were all pretty much at their limit by this point) and some "dirt" ice cream with gummy worms, of course! Our gift to Eleanor was her very own chair. I will post some more photos when I get them.

Thanks for looking!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

A tribute to the birthday girl

Eleanor turns *one* this Friday, the 21st. Here is a little tribute to her first year.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Easter Eggs!

I've been posting like a mad lady lately but March seems to be our busy month!! This week is Ellie's birthday, our anniversary, AND Easter!! Today they had a big Easter egg hunt for the kiddos on base. I had no idea that many toddlers lived in this tiny space but apparently they all come out when there's candy involved. We had a good time. The kids were separated by age groups into the different soccer fields so luckily the little ones had somewhat of a chance of grabbing a few. There was a bounce house, hot dogs, and food! What more could a 2 year old want?

Ellie just watched:

Valerie had a blast! It would have been more fun if the eggs were atleast in taller grass or something but we'll use this as a warm up for next weekend.

Finally time to break out the jellies.. the girly girl was very happy about that one.
Poor Ellie. :)

Friday, March 14, 2008

Outdoor pics

Here are a few pics from today in our yard:

One small step..

or make that three!!! Ellie took her first steps tonight just as mommy was about to leave her with a babysitter for a girls' night out! The sitter got there and Valerie was crying of course as she knew I was leaving her there to be just tortured, I'm sure. Ellie just stood up and started taking steps as the chaos was going on! I ran to get the camera and luckily she did it again.. so these are her "2nd, 1st steps" ;) I'm so glad she did it before I left!!!!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Roars in like a lion..

Apparently I shouldn't have been so quick to say bye to winter! It has been pretty cold and rainy the last several days so we haven't had much to report. I realized that I forgot to post photos of Ellie's baptism which was Feb 10th. She is wearing the same dress that I wore when I was baptized, which my mom made! Chaplain Wilson kept it short and sweet, but Ellie still squealed through most of it. She is a fiesty one! Thank you to my friend Jannelle for taking the photos!

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Backyard Fun

Are you all having a nice weekend? We have had such a busy week of play dates gallore! Valerie got to play with friends every single day last week and I think that definitely made for a better transition into the deployment. We put together our first care package for Derrick this week and she was very excited to paint him a picture to go inside!

We had to cancel our orange picking trip today as Ellie decided to stay up half the night for some reason and therefore an 8 hour excursion with no naps wasn't going to happen. To make up for the loss in photos I thought I'd share our fun today. It is in the 70's out and super sunny! We played in the backyard and got very messy. It was great fun until Valerie decided to dump buckets of water on Ellie and Mama. Guess who was sent upstairs to take an early nap..

Speaking of diva behavior ~ Valerie has started calling me "honey" in almost every sentence this week. How do I stop this?? She's driving me bananas!!
Derrick sends well wishes and after his indoc classes are over and he's settled he will begin to post and upload photos as well. He told me yesterday that he took a yoga class and he thinks his hips are broken. Apparently he wasn't made to move like that. hahahaha.

Lastly, I think we have decided to go to Paris, Belgium, and ending at the Edelweiss resort in Germany for our big trip this summer. My parents are probably going to join us to get some kiddo time in (and let Derrick and I have some date nights!). If anyone has any tips to these areas please send them my way!!