Sunday, December 5, 2010

Happy Toothday!

Chipdip lost his first tooth today.  He has been looking forward to this for a long time, and as soon as it happened, he called everyone we could think of to share the news.  We sure hope the tooth fairy visits tonight!

Actually, Mommy is a little ambivalent about this.  I want to hang on to every moment of G's childhood, and this little step toward adulthood is difficult for me to take.  It's only because of G's joy that I am able to focus on the positive and swallow my sentimentality.

And now, the story.  It happened, as all things seem to happen, while I was in the bathroom.  Matt saw this:

and let me know that I had better get out in a hurry.  We were going to have tacos for dinner, so we knew that the tooth would need to come out before G started crunching any shells.  Matt just reached in and pulled it out.  You can see for yourself:

Here are the before (30 October 2010) and after (today, 5 December 2010) photos of Chip's beautiful smile:

He keeps saying, "I can't believe I lost my tooth today!"  Looks like someone will be asking Santa for a new front tooth!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Zip-A-Dee Doo Dah

We finally went on our ziplining adventure today that we bought over the summer through Groupon.  It was something we have wanted to do for a very long time, and we weren't disappointed.  Here is a photo log of our day.

Laura had said that when we turn off the main road, it would look like we were being led into a trap.  When we turned onto this dirt road, we knew we were going the right way.

This abandoned mill is barely standing, but still beautiful.

It is a really nice property - 137 acres - with a beautiful lodge with games to play while you wait.  Matthew beat me in foosball, 10-3.

We were raring to go.

Matty looking at the platform from which we zipped.

Here he comes!

We wanted to go as fast as possible.

It was impossible to cross the bridge without grabbing the wires, but it wasn't scary with all the ropes to lean into.

This is the highest platform at 70 feet above the ground.

Here I am on the longest zipline of the course.  It was about 750 feet long.

Here comes Matt.  Notice that you can hear the wire "singing" long before you can see him.

I was so excited to pose for the camera, I forgot to brake and came in fast and twisted.  We thought it was funny, how confident we were by then.

We had to rappel straight down from this platform.  Here is Matt, who is safely on the ground.  The only scary part was swinging out over the edge; from our rock climbing experience, we were used to rappelling down.

We got to race each other on the last zipline.

Matt was winning as soon as we started.

Right after this photo was taken, I decided that since I was losing, I would go ahead and slide with my legs up in the air.  Do you see our reflections in the water?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Karaoke In An Ice Cream Parlor

Dinner at Strip this evening was delicious, as usual.  My favorite moment was when G said to the waiter, "Excuse me, excuse me, can I please have some pork chops and some salt?"  When the waiter looked confused, he said, "You know, the things you use to go like this:" and made a pinching motion with his pointer and thumb near his steamed rice.  He had meant to ask for chop sticks.

I have always wanted to try karaoke, but I never have.  In fact, last weekend, the experts (Lindsay and Danielle) helped me plan what songs I will eventually sing.  Today, after dinner, we went to Kilwin's for dessert, and - lo and behold - we found a karaoke machine right in the middle of the store!  Well, we asked if we could try it, and not only did they say yes, but they also gave us free ice cream for singing a song!  I gave mine to G, who chose lemon.

Chip declared the other day that he is "tired of candy," and that M&Ms hurt his tummy.  I think he identifies candy with his illness of last week.  Regardless, he has decided that although candy tastes great, it doesn't make him feel very good.  He asks for seconds of salad, and we are very happy.  Anyhow, at Kilwin's he ordered a chocolate-covered Nutter Butter cookie and also chocolate ice cream with M&Ms.  He took a couple of bites of his ice cream before he remembered his aversion to the M&Ms in both desserts, and he decided to finish Daddy's chocolate shake instead.  When he saw Quincy's lemon ice cream, he decided that was the way to go, so I was happy to let him try his own and move toward healthier flavors.  We don't worry too much about his dessert intake, because he normally has only a couple of bites and feels full.  Anyhow, I just wanted to share this story, because this is the sort of thing I don't want to forget later, and I think it illustrates Chip's personality pretty well.  Lately, he has been surprising and enchanting us at every turn.

All aboard!

We just took our third annual ride on the Pink Pig.

The tradition continues.

There was a lady there making balloon animals, and she made the girls these great pink pigs.

After a little snowfall, the clan gathered in front of the great tree in Atlantic Station's Central Park.

The kids had a great time together.

These trucks were there to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of Hello Kitty.  We got to spin a wheel and win prizes:  bookmarks, nuts (yes, nuts), a bubble necklace, and a key chain.


We didn't realize that "Semi Charmed Life" (Third Eye Blind) was such a naughty song!

Lily had a huge audience and lots of applause for "Love Story" (Taylor Swift).

Friday, November 26, 2010

Silly Macy's

We are at Lenox Square mall, where we rode the Pink Pig and shopped to our hearts' content.  Our dear friend Myeida, who works at Bath & Body Works, gave G a very generous (and cool) gift - a plug-in scented nightlight that CHANGES COLORS!  It is the coolest thing ever, and she is so kind to Chip every time she sees him.  We heart Myeida.

The tree atop Macy's is always a treat to see; it always puts us in the holiday mood.  When we got to "silly Macy's", (Two years ago, Bunnut opened lots of Christmas presents from this store, and G was mock exasperated at yet another Macy's box.  Incidentally, and consequently, it became one of the first words he could ever read.) we had packed a bag for hours of waiting in line for the Pink Pig and were terrified of the crowds, lines, and traffic that we imagined were in store for us.  In fact, there was a little street traffic, but we drove right in to a spot being vacated, and there was no line for the ride.  NO LINE!  And to top it off, we arrived at the stairs up to the ride at the exact same time as the Soergel-Harrises.  It was a beautiful surprise that everything went so smoothly, and we have had a lovely time thus far.

We are now on our way to Atlantic Station, where we are meeting up again with Lindsay and Danielle, et al, Danielle's niece and her friend, and the Whaleys for dinner at Strip.  After dinner, the kids will play in the (machine-made) snow in the central square, and we will take a few photos.

More blogging to come - stay tuned!

Happy Thanksgiving!

We have had a fabulous Thanksgiving. This year, we are more grateful than ever for our family, friends, and many blessings. Here is the story of our celebration in photos.
While shopping for our Thanksgiving groceries, we found a bag of jumbo marshmallows and couldn't resist them.
While cleaning for Thanksgiving, we found a carton of Easter eggs from 2009. Here is one of the eggs that G decorated.
Here is our 20-pound turkey after we brined it, but before we cooked it.
The turkey was stuffed with aromatics - onion, apple, cinnamon stick, sage, and rosemary. Here is a tantalizing photo of the finished turkey with rosemary.
The turkey came out beautifully aromatic, tasty, and juicy.
Chip, Gail, Matt's dad, Matty, and I sat at the dining room table.
My dad, Jen, little J, Jack, and my mom sat at the kitchen table, which was moved into the entryway, next to the dining room table, so we could all sit near each other.
Besides the turkey, we had corn, stuffing, carrots and parsnips, (homemade) green bean casserole, (homemade) mashed potatoes, (homemade) cheesy potato casserole, ham, and (homemade) cloverleaf rolls. For appetizers, we had M&Ms, cheese and crackers, shell-them-youself nuts, shrimp cocktail, and olives. For dessert, we had cookies, pumpkin pie, cheesecake, lemon pie, and chocolate pie.
Jaxie gives his big cousin a kiss.
Papa, J, and G got some quality cuddle time together.
Everyone went outside for the first annual Ceremonial Thanksgiving Lighting Of The House.
Here I am, about to plug in the power to the lights.

 Here is the first annual Ceremonial Lighting Of The House.  Ta-dah!
We decided that Christmas season officially begins after the Ceremonial Lighting Of The House, Chip had to wait all day for us to give him his gift: a Lego Advent calendar.
We all ate as much as we could, but we still ended up with lots and lots of leftovers. This photo doesn't show the dessert leftovers!
It was very warm today, so we had to dress as though it were summer. It didn't keep us from being in the holiday spirit, though!
We had a really wonderful day.
We really had a wonderful day today, and we hope that you did, too. To our family and friends all over the place, we were thinking of you today and how blessed we are that you are in our lives. Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 22, 2010

These Pretzels. Are Making Us Thirsty!*

We found an Auntie Anne's pretzel kit at Kroger on Sunday, so we threw it into our cart without thinking twice.  We are all big fans of the hot pretzel, so we have been very excited to make our own, for the first time ever.  It was actually quite easy, and we had a great time making them.

G chose to season all of the pretzels with salt, and on one he also put cinnamon sugar.  We have all tried the salt ones, and they are sensational.  We are definitely looking forward to making these again, and we haven't even eaten all of these yet!

Mommy figures out what to do with the dough

The real expert takes over

G shows Daddy how it's done

The Chipster puts the twist in the pretzel

The beautiful, delicious results

*A line from Seinfeld: