Self-Portraits

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View of a Nursing Mother:  This is often my view for many hours of the day.  I should really try to set up a comfy nursing spot in a more attractive part of the house.

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The Quiet Desperation of the Third Child:  I'm in this plastic bucket while my family goes from one activity to the next.

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Mommy?  Can I take a picture of myself?:  Taking ones own photo is more difficult than it sounds.

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The Proud Soccer Star:  This was her first medal and she really couldn't have been more excited.

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Playing Injured:  She was a trooper with all her scrapes she still went out there and gave it her all!


More Door!

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The poor little Pippa spent so much time on vacation in this seat.  Eventually, she got fed up and would wail as soon as our arms made the motions to put her in it.  There were these blissful moments, however, where we got sweet grins out of her.  Oh these sweet baby days!

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Of course there was alot of time to just hang out at the shore and practice our stone skipping skills. 

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The kids favorite place in Door County now is definitely "The Farm"  This wonderful beauty was so cute.  When you walked by her pen she would stick out her tongue and kind of moo at you so that you would throw her some corn to munch.

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These poor chicks.  They get many squishes a day, I'm sure.

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One of the last stops is the always packed bunny hutch.  They are soooo cute.  Everything at this place is immaculate and the animals are all very well cared for, I really couldn't say enough about what a joy it is to come here every year with the family.

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Finally, a photo of me with my girls.  Look carefully, as the photographer in the family, it's one in a million.


The Wedding

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My sweet peach and the little bird in front of my hometown church, St. Mary's, for my cousin's wedding.  It seems my family has a wedding every summer.  This event was meaningful for many reasons not the least of which was the miracle of my middle child allowing me to do her hair.  If you don't know her, you wouldn't know that I constantly worry the child is going to get carple tunnel from holding her hair out of her face all day.  She barely tolerates a tiny barrette in her hair much less this elaborate hair job.  Honestly, you could hardly recognize her.  I talked her into it by calling this "do" princess hair!  She walked around all day staring at herself in mirrors and grinning from ear to ear.  "Momma, I'm a pwetty pwincess!"  Yes, you sure are!

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These large family get togethers are much harder for my oldest child, who has turned out to be the shy quiet one that tends to get overwhelmed by large crowds of strange adults.  She tends to melt into my side and you pretty much hardly hear a peep out of her.

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I tend to catch her wandering off by herself. . .

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Although, no one can pass up a great ride on the golf cart.  From right to left, that's my youngest cousin, my cousin Becky's oldest we'll call "Honey", my sweet peach, and the little bird.

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The sweet peach turned out to be a true party girl.  She would have stayed out there all night.  There she is doing the electric slide.  Mommy and Daddy bowed out on this one claiming dance moves ignorance.  Her response was "That's okay I'll figure it out myself."  And she did!


DOOR COUNTY!

This post will take several days to finish, so bare with me.  We took our annual vacation to Door County over the fourth.  It is truly my favorite place on earth.  It's like my second home.  I spent countless weekends there growing up and lived there for a few months during a couple of college summers and fell in love with the place.  I have dreams of retiring there some day.  I'd like to buy a few acres and build a little energy efficient farmhouse with a little vegetable garden in the back. . .oh, maybe some chickens. . . anyway, back to the trip.  It was wonderful, as usual, Door County doesn't disappoint.  This year we tried to be adventurous and explored parts of the area we haven't been to before.  Our first stop was "The Farm" in Sturgeon Bay.  I really couldn't gush enough about this place.  It is absolutely a gem as far as family fun.  I'm sure the girls could've stayed all day.

IMG_1458 I think my little bird loved the kittens the most.  While the sweet peach wanted to spend all day with the chicks.

IMG_1452 She was so gentle with them and adorable to watch because she carefully scooped up a chick for every little kid around that wanted to hold one.

There were piglets:

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IMG_1442 I have to say my favorites were the little lambs. . . so soft:

Sorry, due to technical difficulties the lambs don't want to load.  Maybe I'll get them in tomorrow. . . uuuhhh this new program ticks me off.  Anyway, let me just say we enjoyed ourselves so much I tracked down the owner (a sweet little old man in bib overalls, is that cliche or what) and couldn't say enough nice things about the place.  It's clean and neat as a pin and all of the animals look to be extremely well cared for and loved.  It's definitely on our list of things to visit again next year.  All of this in one post, and that was just on our way up.  Well, more tomorrow.


Summer Fun

Well, we pulled out the sprinkler and got a slip and slide.  The girls are having a blast already this summer.  The sweet peach and I went shopping for a new Fourth of July dress and this was her pick.

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Here's the sprinkler fun:

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Grandparent's Day!

*Please bare with me while I figure out the new format this program is using.  I'm quite frustrated, but hope to figure out all the quirks soon.

Grandparent's Day was a huge success at the little bird's school.  She was so excited to show her grandma's around and tell them all about her school and everything she's been doing this year.  The school did a great job welcoming all of the grandparents with food and coffee and flowers.  The flowers were particularly beautiful.

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 After the program we all got to have lunch together.  The little sister was so happy to be able to join in all the fun.

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Here she is waiting patiently with her two grandmas.

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On the Sunday before the big day, we all got to attend the little bird's spring concert.  She was in the Cheer Club at school this year and got to put on a performance at the start of the concert.

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All in all, it was a very successful event.  Next year, it's the Grandpa's turn!


The Accident

Well, I've been avoiding updating this until we knew how it would all turn out.  My sweet peach had an accident at the neighbors house.  The tip of her middle finger on her right hand was torn off by a piece of exercise equipment.  This stair master is kept unplugged and pushed up into the corner of their den in the basement.  They were not supposed to be on it.  However, they decided this would be the perfect place to play "space ship".  My beautiful girl sat on one step and her friend sat on the other step.  Her finger was in the middle (as far as we can tell).  The doctor at the emergency room sewed it back on but we had a harrowing weekend where we weren't sure if it was going to "take".  It "took".  She gets to keep her whole finger.

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Trying to keep quiet and still at Opa's:

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She got pushed around in the wheel-barrel!

We visited Nana too:

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Anyway, healing is going well.  The stitches come out on Monday.  We won't know whether she'll have a nail or not for a few months.  Really, though, we're just grateful she gets to keep her whole finger.


Lots of Thank Yous!

Lot of people to thank. . .

Opa and Debbie: Everyone has fallen in love with the great blue house.

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Even the big sister.

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And Nana: The girls love their Easter dresses.  The little bird couldn't stop twirling.

I got her to stand still long enough to take this shot.  I'll catch the sweet little peach on a later day.

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She's still a baby right?  She's not really that big.  It must be a trick of the camera.


It's a Dog Thing

Well, let me start by saying that we love our dog.  She's definitely one of the family.  However, that doesn't necessarily mean we want everything to smell like her.  I have a daycare in my house and as a result our pooch has to spend a considerable amount of time either outside or sleeping on our bed (she likes to stare out our window and watch for her boyfriend acrossed the street).  This is really fine with us.  We are definitely not "no dogs on the furniture" type people.  Well, perhaps my husband would be if left to his own devices, but as I'm currently the primary home body, I win.  Really, though, I have no desire to crawl into my bed and wake up smelling of retriever and full of her lovely golden hair.  So I've been laying an old quilt down on top of our bed before I let her snooze.  This hasn't been really sufficient for me, though, as I'm always thinking her scent is going to permeate our down comforter which is really no fun to wash.  So, today I thought of a plan.  I'll roll up the down comforter and stuff it behind the throw pillows and just lay the quilt on top of the sheets.  I know you're thinking "well, what about the sheets?"  but those get washed quite frequently and the duvet does not.  So. . . that's what I did.  Several hours later I went in to check on her and this is what I found.

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"What? You thought you could hide my squishy blanket that smells just like a big juicy bird?  Ha!  I laugh in your face!"  That's what she said; I swear. 


The Kid Birthday!

This one was healthy!  All of the peach's little friends came over and decorated cupcakes as party entertainment.  I bought every kind of thing you can think of to put on top of a cupcake (sprinkles, gummy worms, little chocolate mints, jelly bellies) and three kinds of frosting.  It was a huge hit.

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This was a typical creation.  I believe this one was done by the little bird.  You can't even see the cupcake.

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and this time, after the candles were blown out, we actually ate the cake!

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Happy Birthday sweetheart.  And, yes, to those of you that are wondering, that is the purple dress.


The Sick Birthday

Well, we did the best we could.  That's all I can say about it.  We (the darling husband, myself, and the peach) were all desparately ill on her birthday.  We managed to wrap the gifts and sing the song and cut the cake.  The only actual eating of the cake was done by the little bird who managed to not get sick.  Thank you to our neighbors who allowed our daughter to pretty much live at their house for a week while we cleaned and recuperated. 

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The peach was so happy with her baking set from American Girl; she set it all up right away.

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Those dolls are going to have quite the feast!


The Artist on a Sick Day

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Thank you Opa and Debbie for the ultimate artist gift.  The little bird stayed home sick today and kept busy at her easel.  She is quite the serious artist and relishes in all of the supplies.  She spent quite a while working on this painting of our house.

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Experimenting with sepia is fun too:

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My Growing-up Girl

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So beautiful and so serious.

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The artist always has some color on her fingers.  And everyone said the red hair would fade.  If anything it's gotten even deeper.  My darling husband says soon she'll be too big to carry up to bed.  She'll have to walk.  Ooohhh . . . that's just heart wrenching to me.


Too cute

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Since we got the camera two days ago, every few hours my sweet peach asks, "Momma?  Do you wanna take a pitcha of me?"  And, I ask you, who wouldn't want to photograph this beauty?

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Really. . . I can't help myself.


Moon Sand

I want to meet the fool that invented this.  As my neighbor said, "There was not parental involvement in the creation of this product."  As the ad on TV says, "It's like a sandbox for your house."  And why, might I ask, would one want such a thing?  Anyway, the little bird got some for her birthday and I've been hiding it from her for months.  The VIP finally said, why don't you invite the neighborhood kids over, make it into a party, and get it over with.  So that's what we did.

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This is obviously a very early photo as the table and floor are not yet covered in sand.  Which, of course, the children promptly walked through and then carried it throughout the house on their socks.  The next owners of this home will be finding purple sparkly sand hidden away in nooks and crannies; I'm sure of it.

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The kids had a blast.  Isn't that all that matters?


The Big Christmas Post

Well, this is a big one.

First off, we have the Little Bird's Christmas concert.  She did a great job and was so pretty in her Christmas dress.  Notice that it is not pink.  Little Bird's rule is no pink.  Let me tell you, finding little girl clothes that have no pink is quite a trick.  This is also another new haircut picture.  She begged me to cut it even shorter, however, I told her that's as short as mommy goes with little girls.  When she's eighteen she can shave her head if she so desires.  Oddly, she looked quite excited about that prospect!

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Then there's our Christmas tree.  You'll all get a copy of the story behind it in our Christmas letter.

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Thirdly, there's the new princess shoes the peach got as a gift from a friend for Christmas.  They have become her new accessory.  She doesn't quite understand why Mommy won't let her wear them everywhere.  Is she my girlie girl or what?

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A close-up:

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And, yes, that's her purple Christmas dress that she's worn pretty much everyday since we bought it.

Finally, it snowed here last night and I just love it when the snow sticks to the branches like this.

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Merry Christmas.  See you in 2008.


Little Bird Piano Recital II

She did a wonderful job.  Next year I think we may actually invite family to come and listen.  We weren't quite to that stage this year, but she did great.  It's a little painful listening to twenty versions of Twinkle, Twinkle, but we survived.

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And the sisters shared some post performance love. . .

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Isn't that sweet?


Little Bird Gets a Trim

Well, here's the thing she's been on me about for weeks.  Can I get my hair cut. . . can I get my hair cut. . . can I get my hair cut?  She would've gone even shorter than this had I let her.  I, however, want my little girl to still look like a girl. 

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Short but still sweet.

And from the side while wiggling her lose tooth.

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And this is what my sweet princess typically does now when asked to pose for a photo. . .

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Charming.