Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Bud's Best Cookies

Today I accompanied Bennett on one of her many field trips that she has this school year. We visited "Bud's Best Cookies," a local maker and distributor of cookies. Several mothers shuttled the kids there, and then we got our wonderful hair nets on and took a train ride around the plant while we heard how the cookies were made, tested, packaged and sent off.

Bennett and one of her little girlfriends in her class rode in my car on the way there. They sang and danced in the backseat, and had a very silly conversation (you got to love this age and wonder what they talk about while at school for four hours).

Of course, neither of the girls wanted to return to school after the field trip. They wanted to go out to lunch, and bail on their packed lunches...imagine that!

It was a fun day though, and I think Bennett felt a little better about school once she heard she only had music, lunch and recess left. She's a child after my own heart for sure!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Spring Break 2012

This year for the kid's spring break, we asked my parents to come watch the kids so we could go skiing. Thankfully they agreed, so we packed our bags and headed west to Park City, Utah. We skied in Deer Valley two years ago in March and had a ball, so we decided to do it again!

I left Birmingham's 85 degree weather in flip-flops (shocker, right?), and landed in Salt Lake City where it was a much cooler (yet mild) 45 degrees. As we departed the airport, all we could see were mountains in every direction. The scenery out here is just gorgeous! As we drove into P.C., we picked up our skis, hit the grocery store for some essentials and then bought our lift tickets. After relaxing for a couple of hours, we drove over to the St. Regis, took the gondola up at sunset and enjoyed dinner by the fireplace in their bar.

Last year, we decided that we do better eating breakfast at the house (thank you Aunt Sue and Uncle Jim for letting us stay in your beautiful place), then hitting the slopes as they open up. Rather than stopping for lunch, we bring along a bottle of water and a protein bar and power through as many runs as we can. On our first day, we skied for 4.5 hours and did 22 runs! We felt great, and the conditions were awesome.

On day 2, the temperatures got a little warmer so we knocked out as many as we could before the slush really kicked in that afternoon. Unfortunately I was suffering from "shin bang" and cut my day a little short (only doing about 15 runs), but Steve stayed out another hour and got to 20 for the day. That night we browsed a few shops in Park City, before dining at Prime Steakhouse.

After sleeping 10 hours (which neither of us has done in ages), we hit day 3 with a plan to hit the lower mountain early and work our way up. But I knew as soon as I got my boots on that my shin was going to cause me problems again. We hit the slopes regardless and I tried to ski through the pain. After several hours, I was at my breaking point. But then Steve saw Michael Jordan, which turned my attitude around. We were going to ask him for a photo, but as we approached him, his ski instructor shuck his head at us. Michael must have noticed, so he flashed me that million dollar smile and said "hello." I smiled back and told him that I was a huge fan and loved him. We then rode the lift up and got our cameras ready since he was a few chairs behind us. Steve snapped this one as he skied on down the hill. We quickly followed him, and noticed that he is a pretty good skier....even though he had an instructor. We later found out he owns a home here and skis and golfs here often.

After my high of seeing him wore off, the pain set in again and we decided to cut our day short. We did a beeline for the Stein Erickson and sat outside to people watch and eat a late lunch. They have a wonderful buffet! I had a great healthy lunch, except for my 4 desserts!! :) It was too hard to choose from all of the wonderful things, so I had to have several rice krispie treats, cream brulee and a piece of flan...YUMMY!!

Our last day, we spent shopping at the outlet mall and relaxing. We also had a nice Italian dinner out, and just enjoyed our time together. It was great trip, and we're happy we had the opportunity to hang out together. It is also nice to not worry about the kids and dog while we are away....as we knew they were in good hands. In fact, here are a few photos that my mother sent us during the week to prove all the fun they had!

Spencer had it made napping with Poppy in bed
Pres insisted on wearing his wool cap and coat in 70 degree weather!

The kids riding a camel at the zoo!

The 4 older grandkids

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy St Patrick's Day!

It is that time of year again, where people dress in green, fake Irish accents and drink too many green beers...St Patrick's Day!! Though I have absolutely ZERO Irish in me, I have always loved this holiday! To me it is one of the best because there is no stress...just fun times had by all. We awoke to another beautiful day, so we divided and knocked out a couple of errands. Then we regrouped and met up with my brother and his family. All of the kids played and then we all went to lunch together.

We chose a place where we could sit outside and enjoy the weather. Most places in Homewood that have outdoor seating are dog-friendly, so Spencer even got to partake in the fun today. The kids played in the fountain, drew all over the sidewalk with chalk and basically wore themselves out playing in the sun, while we sat in the shade, ate and talked. It was a great way to start off the day.

When all of the kids started to melt down, we parted ways to come home and shower and get them down for naps. However, the showers perked them up. Since our babysitter was scheduled to arrive at 3:30, we decided to let her put up with any further meltdowns and kept them up. After she arrived, we went to a friend's house to meet up with some friends to ring in the holiday. Everyone was starting to get a little rowdy, but I left early to relieve the babysitter and put the kids down.

Though I forgot to take pictures with our friends, we had a great time. It was another perfect day, some family time and some friend time.

(Little Lucy slept the entire 3 hours we were with them, she is such an angel)

Friday, March 2, 2012

It Sounded Like a Great Idea...

Bennett LOVES art...coloring with crayons, markers, watercolors and painting with brushes! She colors everyday, which I don't mind because she can access it all by herself, it is easy clean-up and it keeps her busy for awhile doing something creative. However, every so often she asks to paint. Since it isn't a daily occurrence (or even weekly), I try to say "yes" every time she asks.

Unfortunately, it always ends up the same way....Preston wants to paint (and he is sloppy), they don't like to share paints, so I have to create two separate plates with a large variety of paint colors, they paint one picture each and then they are done! The whole set-up process takes about 5-10 minutes, and they paint for roughly 5 minutes, then I clean up, which takes another 5 minutes.

Ahhhh....the things we do for love.