Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Natural History Museum

Took the two youngest to the Natural History Museum today. We had a great time looking at the dinosaurs and the stuffed mammals. C really liked roaming around the Oceans exhibit -- he loved the giant squid.

I had totally forgotten that on Tuesdays there is free admission to the butterfly hut on the second floor! So great. C loved checking each type of butterfly off of the list provided by the museum. And L really enjoyed herself too -- grabbing and pointing and laughing. So glad I was able to catch that today!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Harry Potter Crazy

We are well into the third Harry Potter book at our house and the kids are still happily obsessed. We are reading about a chapter a night, and then we watch the movies when we finish the book.

Their Harry & Hermione costumes are ready for Halloween (including the adorable round glasses for young Harry). Sorry to say that Harry will not be wearing a fake lightning bolt scar on his forehead. He's convinced that with the scar, he'll be able to do real magic!

Not sure yet what we are going to do when we finish the third book...I'm thinking the fourth book (and beyond) are a bit much for such young kids. Will definitely be something to think about.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Rock Band

Home again after a long road trip...Virginia to New York to Boston and back all in 5 days with 3 kids and no other adults. So very tired...

But we had a great time and the kids are now obsessed with the Beatles. We played Beatles Rock Band at our cousins' house in Brooklyn and the kids just loved it. When I got home on Sunday night, we found someone selling it on craigslist for super cheap and we picked it up last night.

The kids have been singing and really enjoying themselves, so its money well spent. Can't wait to really try it out and see how we do!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Halloween, already.

We haven't even gone back to school, but the kids have already decided what they want to be for Halloween and want to get started on their costumes. We've been reading the Harry Potter books at night and now C wants to be Harry and B wants to be Hermione. Should be easy enough: robe, tie, white shirt, wand, and glasses for Harry.

I broke out my knitting bag for the first time in over 6 years last night. I'm hoping I can remember enough to make them some "Gryffindor" scarves to wear with the costumes. I was having a lot of trouble remembering the basics, but then thought of searching on YouTube for some instructions. Within minutes I was all set. Pretty cool.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

One Day

Finished a terrific book last night: "One Day" by David Nicholls. I read a lot of books and there are very few actually make me wish I had been the one to think up the story and write it so well. This book made me jealous of David Nicholls.

Simple plot -- a love story about two best friends from college and how their lives and potential romance play out over the next 20 years. The clever part is that the story checks in on them only once a year, always on the same date. Well done and difficult to put down.

Here's the review that convinced me to pick it up:

This book made me laugh and it also made me cry.

Only other books to make me cry? "Cold Mountain", "Persuasion", and "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius".

FYI: The last book that made me jealous of the author was "Special Topics in Calamity Physics" by Marisha Pessl.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Feeling Domestic

I must have been busy today around the house...I just looked at my shirt and it was covered in caulk and brownie mix.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Birthday Party

We had the big combo 6/4 "Star Wars" birthday party this weekend, and it was a huge hit.

11 kids between the ages of 3 and 7 jumped around in our newly finished basement for a few hours, hitting each other with the homemade "light sabers" that I made out of pool noodles and shiny duct tape. We made up a couple of Star Wars-themed games (throwing water balloons off the deck at a chalk drawing of the Death Star in the driveway, thawing a frozen Han Solo action figure, pin the hair on Princess Leia) and then decorated bags for collecting candy out of the pinata.

I'm guessing that this is probably the last year that I can get away with doing one party for the two kids. It sure was nice while it lasted!

Friday, July 16, 2010


So, I guess we had a pretty big (for the area) earthquake this morning.

I had no idea. I just read about it on Facebook -- one of my friends wrote to ask me if everyone was ok!

Did anyone else feel it?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

25 Years Ago...

Wow, just realized that Live Aid was 25 years ago this week (just read that it was July 13, 1985).

For anyone (like me) that grew up during that time, Live Aid was a HUGE event.

Remember that little band from Ireland that played that day? I think they were called U2...

Afternoon at Costco

Had to drive over to Costco today to prepare for the big birthday party this weekend. Ordered a cake with a huge blue dinosaur on it for only $16.99 -- and it will feed up to 40 people! That's half the price of the supermarket, and twice the size.

The kids had a blast going aisle to aisle and trying all the different foods that were being prepared. They tried angus beef, spinach ravioli, healthy fudge pops, croissants, slim jims (they both decided they did not like those), spinach dip, and fried zucchini. They would not try the whitefish dip or the salmon.

Amazing how many people walking around look as if they are just there for their lunch of free samples!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Swimming Lessons

Forgive me for the following rant.

Today was day 2 of 20 for the kids' swimming lessons at the pool club. And day 2 of me wishing that some of the other parents would pay attention to their kids while they were having their lessons.

Stop texting for 30 minutes, please.

Some of these kids are out of control and are a danger to themselves as well as the other kids in the class. They are only 3 or 4 years old, and have no idea. Please keep an eye on what they are up to.


Friday, July 9, 2010

Summer Reading

Took the kids around to Borders, Barnes & Noble, and the library today to get them signed up for all of the summer reading rewards programs I could find. Borders and B&N will give the kids a free book (we've got our eye on Ramona the Brave!) if they completely fill out their reading sheet, and the Fairfax County Public Library gives out a nice book of kid-friendly coupons.

FYI -- the Borders and B&N reading sheets can be found online.


Thursday, July 8, 2010


Just picked up my mail and was happy to see my brand new, hardcover copy of The Girl Who Played with Fire sitting in the mailbox. Traded an old copy of The Historian for it on Swaptree.com -- if you aren't using it, I highly recommend it. Great way to get rid of old books, cds, dvds, and video games by swapping them out with another user on the website. You only pay for the postage, which you can print out at home. Definitely the easiest swapping site I've used (I've tried a bunch over the years). Especially handy for kids dvds -- I hate to pay full price for these!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Crafty Afternoon

Took B to the Monday afternoon craft session at Doodlehopper's toy store in Falls Church. They made an awesome jewelry box -- the kind with a dancing ballerina inside, and it plays music from Swan Lake when you wind it up. Will definitely be back next week... a nice way for the kids to get out of the heat and do something crafty!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Holiday Weekend

Today we drove out to Reston Town Center to see the always pleasant Mr. KnickKnack do his thing. Some nice music for the kids, including a couple of verses of America the Beautiful. Very nice in front of the enormous flag hanging under the pavilion. Great to see such a big crowd out there on such a hot day!