Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Phoenix Children's Museum

I really love the culture pass program. My friends ask me how I always get good ones and it's because I live super close to the library and I put books on hold all the time. The culture passes are near the held books so I always scan them when I go. I also go in the evenings or late afternoon. I assume most people with kids go in the mornings because it is almost always empty in the kids area when we go.

Anyways, I lucked out and found one for the Children's Museum of Phoenix. Last time we went we didn't have much time to explore so I made sure to plan better this time. I figured J would maybe last 2 hours before getting bored.


She could have stayed there all day.

Here is some of the fun as captured by my phone.

They had a big painting area, complete with smocks and a tree structure to paint. I thought it was really cool but J was more interested in coloring with the crayons and attempting to use scissors. She cried when I led her to the glitter playdough table. Yet she pointed to all the art of the walls and said, "Pretty!" Perhaps there is some art appreciation in there somewhere.

They had this cool car wash thing for the kids to run bikes through. She couldn't quick manage it, but it didn't stop her from trying.

There was an entire room dedicated to building forts.

She really liked these light tables. There was another one with sand on it she spent a lot of time at too. I'm trying to decide if I want to make one out of a train table.

 Like the Seattle Children's Museum, there was a petite grocer she adored.

Note that she had to put her purse in the cart. This purse has to be dragged everywhere we go.
 She is a champ at unloading carts and swiping credit cards. Sometimes I even let her sign.

 Of course her number one favorite thing was probably the J sized sink in the bathroom.

I didn't get pictures of half the stuff we did, but it is seriously a REALLY cool place to visit. I even looked into buying a year pass because we had that much fun. Well worth the cost of a movie admission and now my favorite culture pass ever.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Maidename/ Jmas Day Party2012

 Here is my lovely cousin, organizer and purchaser of the biggest chocolate cake of all time. Thanks for putting it together.

My goal was to get a picture of all the kiddos so these all mostly a bunch of portraits to enjoy comparing to photos years from now.

This sweet one wanted a journal and a pen for Christmas so I gave her one, to which she exclaimed, "That's what I ALWAYS wanted! Thank you Geemie!" (Geemie is my aunty name) Then she went off and found a solitary corner to write, like a true authoress.

Please forgive me Sara, but I loved this pose too much not to share it.

Uncle Eric wins on swing pushing efficiency.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Christmas 2012

What? You don't post your Christmas morning posts in late January? Why not? It's what the cool kids are doing.

I'm still refining how I want Christmas to be in our house. You know, how many presents, what comes from Santa, presents on Christmas Eve,  does Santa come at all, etc. Last year we didn't get J anything. Terrible aren't we? I figured she had plenty of things and her grandparents and aunties had it all taken care of.

This year we kept it simple as well. Well sort of. We decided Christmas Eve was the best day for us to completely rearrange three rooms in our house to accommodate little brother. So about 8pm I'm almost in tears because you can't even see our Christmas tree because of all the mess and furniture. Thankfully my husband was able to calm me down and we got things cleaned up enough to satisfy my vision of Christmas morning

Her big present was this lovely wooden kitchen. My awesome mom found them for $5 a pop at the school district surplus sale and bought a set for all of her children. There is a fridge too but we are saving that for next Christmas. Seriously, they run for $200 if you call them vintage. So thanks Grandma for storing them in your attic until our kid was old enough to enjoy them. We also got her some pots and pans and a new puzzle. She likes to hand people the paper as she rips it off. Her own way of sharing her presents, since that is the only sharing she does willingly.

The kitchen was the biggest hit though.

Then we headed over to Madre Dos's house for her birthday brunch. Of course I didn't snap any pictures of our awesome presents because I was too busy loving them.  I did catch pictures these lovely people though.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

J's 2nd Bday Party

If you have met my daughter, you would know about her shoe obsession. I bought a pair of mint green flats this last week and she thought they were her own. She cried and threw a fit when I wore them yesterday, demanding they were hers in her limited vocabulary, "WAAAH! MINE!!"

So for her 2nd birthday we had a shoe themed party. And purple. For no particular reason. You all should be proud of me too, since this was relatively low key as far as one of my parties go.

We had a cupcake cake that was impossible to photograph well when I had other things to finish. I even used store bought frosting. See? Low key.

She now gets the whole blowing out candles thing. In fact, she tried to blow out all the candles at Anthropologie last week while saying, "Happy to you"

The only decorations were purple balloons, a large restraint on my part, with subs and grape soda. The first idea had the subs made out to look like shoes, but those details were edited out due to poor effort to effect ratio.

The best party advice I've ever heard was from Jordan Ferney at Oh Happy Day. She said every party needs something unexpected or a kind of surprise to be memorable. So J's party had a giant shoe chair she refused to pose on.

No, I didn't buy it, but borrowed it from an old high school friend who had it in her room when she was a teenager. You wouldn't guess such a bold furniture piece would have such staying power.

I didn't even make J's birthday outfit. Well I did iron on the 2, but I didn't applique it. Which is why it is in various states of peeling off in these pictures. There shows my restraint yet again. She was particularly spoiled by all her extended family.

Padre Dos included a candy necklace, promptly transporting J to her own version of nirvana.

Madre Dos got her an abundance of socks at this Mommy's request. Those things disappear like chameleons.

Uncle Keith and Aunt Marcie and cousins have brought about the word "Paint!" into a daily word at our house.

Aunt Julie and Uncle Matthew gave a set of books that came in a "purse" which have become regular favorites around here.

Big Sis bought her a stroller that gets used or fought over every day since.

I got her a little power wheels quad I found for $2 at Goodwill months ago. Husband managed to hack it to run on a lantern battery so it is awesome and cheap.

Her daddy wanted to get her something special so he took her out that morning on a special date to the toy store to pick out a new dolly. Melted my little heart and gave me a chance to prep for the party without my pint sized companion.

It is even cooler than I thought since it blinks and falls asleep after you hold the bottle to its mouth long enough. And it giggles or cries depending on where you squeeze it. 

She had to take the new baby to "work."

And what party is complete without a pinata? I even showed restraint by not making one. But not really since I was planning on it when Big Sis found the perfect shoe pinata for me as part of J's present.

The pinata ended up being more solid than we thought so the big kids got to try.

So we just let the kids go at it on the ground.

The remnants even made lovely fashion accessories

Now I can start planning her 3 year old party :) Maybe if I do it now, it won't sneak up on me in December.

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