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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

TIME MACHINE TUESDAY: First Steps and the Floppy Floor Flinger

Chapter 3...

For our third installment of TMT, we shall journey back to a time of peace and tranquility in our humble home.  A time when baby-proofing meant making sure nothing breakable was left on the floor.  Our home was full of the cuddling and serenity that those charming, darling babies tend to bring to their families.  (Or lull them into a sense of false security?)  Then one day, my sweet baby boy -- on those wobbly, chubby, 10-month-old legs -- learned to take his first steps.  In that moment he officially went from "infant" to "toddler".  Such a precious moment, one that seemed to pass far too quickly...

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Fast forward four short months.  No more sitting and cuddling for that little boy.  Gentle exploration has turned to tornadic activity.  Quiet babbling has turned to hollering.  Toddling has turned to full-out running. And the sweet tempered little angel I frequently snuggled with not so long ago has now mastered the art of throwing tantrums.  Big ones.  Grandma Deb informs me this is known as the "Franzen Fit".  And I thought my family members were the ones with the melodramatic tendencies.

Last weekend, Mama and Lil' Man were home alone while Daddy and Big Sister went to a wedding in WYO.  Baby missed his sissy BIG TIME, and repeatedly called her name and searched the house for her.  Sweetest thing ever! (odd too, because when the two are together, we have a bit of the sibling love/hate thing going!)  In this clip, he had been calling down the stairs (he yells "Aaaatha" down the steps, perhaps suspecting she had just been downstairs playing with her doll house this whole time?) when he finally came and grabbed my hand, apparently plotting to get me to take him outside in search of his beloved big sister.  When he figured out I wasn't going to take him out... pandemonium!!!  This normally sweet and docile little dude can throw a tantrum like no other child I've ever seen.  Here is a brief demonstration, complete with a little number we like to call "The Floppy Floor Flinger", with a little "Rattle the Cage" action for good measure.  Impressive.

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Until next time (as Lil' Man says) "Bah-Bye"!!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

TIME MACHINE TUESDAY: the Fabulous Tea Party

Chapter 2


Now we’re going to travel back in time… not far, just a little bit.
"If my calculations are correct, when this baby hits 88 you're going to see some serious s***"…


Back in March, Asha & I spent the better part of a week laid up with the most awful case of the stomach flu I’ve ever seen. Blecchy. It was nowhere near a good time. But toward the end of that week, as we were both finally starting to regain our strength, we both decided we needed to do something besides lay wilted on the couch with a barf bucket in hand. Asha requested to play dress-up, I requested a tea party. We both got our wish, and I got some great practice working with my camera to get some pretty decent indoor shots (I’m still trying to figure this DSLR out! I need lessons. Any takers?)  We really did have a great time, some much-needed fun after a (literally) crappy week.

So here is our flu-recovery-celebratory dress-up tea party. As you can see, my little actress was really enjoying the camera time!  First the Princess Poses....




Then, the Tea Party begins (with party guests Lucy Koo and Pooh Bear)...


The "tea" was apparently rather hot, we did a lot of cooling it off...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

TIME MACHINE TUESDAY: A trip to Seattle

Chapter One

As per one of my recent posts regarding my crappy blogging habits, I am hereby instituting "Time Machine Tuesday". (Being a Microsoftie, I live amidst a sea of acronyms, so I'm calling it TMT. Deal with it.) My goal is to play "catch-up" with my TMT posts. I'm going to try and keep up with 'current events' blogging, but TMT will be dedicated to catching up with the more interesting stuff I've missed in the past few months. So here goes (rewind sound):
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In late March, I got the fantastic opportunity to go on my first “grown-up” trip. I spent a week in Seattle for Tech Ready 10, learning about the coolest new products and attending these great sessions and meeting Microsoft employees from all over the world. It was freaking amazing! But my poor husband did not get to go and had to stay back home with the munchkins for the week. But before you start to feel sorry for him, let me first inform you that my Dad came up here to help. For the whole week. That is like having Alice from the Brady Bunch plus Tony Micelli all rolled up into one, cuz the man cleans, cooks, launders, & babysits like a true professional. Plus, my mom & I stocked the fridge to cover almost every meal while I was away so Jordan didn’t have to worry about cooking. So do not pity the fool.

Meanwhile, I was enjoying incredible meals, making new friends, and learning sweet stuff about new product releases & other nerdiness. I also got to do a lot of sightseeing: The Space Needle, Seattle Aquarium, Public Market Center, Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum, and just meandering around downtown. To top it all off, for the last night of the convention, we hit the attendee party at the Redmond campus and were spoiled with great food, incredible entertainment (I may or may not have sang onstage with a live karaoke band), and lots and lots and lots of free booze. Perfection.

But I missed my kids crazy bad, so much so that by Friday, I was on the verge of tears and just wanted to get on the next plane to Fargo. Which is easier said than done. I had an uncomplicated trip back home and even though I had a blast in Seattle, I have never been so glad to see the vast brown dirt pancake that is Fargo when we came down out of the clouds in that little puddle-jumper plane. Can’t wait to go back again someday soon – maybe next time the hubby will get to go too!

The most delicious Steak Oscar I've ever had.  The alien antennae are sweet potatoe strings... YUM. This place had great beer samplers too, which our European friends were not as impressed by, but was a fun way to taste the local brews. I could think of worse ways to spend almost all my daily food stipend in one sitting!

Kurt Cobain's guitars at the Experience Music Project.  Just to the left is Dave Grohl's drum set.  Sweet.

DJ Jazzy Shanny playing with the turntables.  I got 2 turntables and a microphone.  Where it's at?

Touring the Sound with some of the guys from Romania and Germany, and 4 of the Fargo crew.

Me in front of the Aquarium

This was about halfway into the Mixology class they had at the attendee party.  Mojito in one hand (I made it myself!), Bud Light in the other.  All class, folks.

Showing Andrei what we thought of his camera.  While eating the best Mexican food ever!

Our last night in town, after eating at Spaghetti Factory.  Dean is seen here playing "Asian Tourist", I am censoring the inappropriate Starbucks mermaid.  FUN night!!

I saw some pretty cool sights out there, but none could compare to this sight when I returned home again...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Imaginary Friend

Overheard this conversation this morning:

"Daddy, this is my friend Cara Tara!"

"Oh, uh, "Hi"...is she your imaginary friend?"

"Yeah. Her middle name is Madison."

"That's a nice name. What's her last name?"

"Watford City."

"So, your imaginary friends' name is Cara Tara Madison Watford City?"

"Yep."

"Huh... interesting."


What a cracker.  Here, The Happy Painter is showing off her writing skills on her new easel (doesn't take after her Mama's facial expressions now, does she?)

How to Fail at Blogging

Heeewly crap, have I ever dropped the ball on this blogging thing!! I claim to be busy (but really am no busier than anyone else with 2 kids and a full time job) so I have no excuse other than… well, I never remember to update the dang thing! Rather, I sometimes remember, but it is usually at the most inopportune moment – in the shower, restroom at work, while taking the dog out for a midnight pee – mostly because those are the only times I ever have enough peace and quiet to take 3 seconds to myself to stop and think for a moment.


I feel like I should backtrack a few months (like while I still have a vague recollection of the memory) and record some of these “moments in family history” because I also suck at keeping up my kids’ scrapbooks. I’ve been good about capturing events on camera, both still and video. But I want a detailed description to remember this stuff to dig up when they’re 16 and it will thoroughly embarrass them. A friend of mine keeps up her blog, about 2-3 times a week, as sortof a journal of the day-to-day stuff her family does. She then sends it to a publisher and gets a book printed up for each year she’s blogged. It is so cool seeing how her kids have grown, and how their lives have changed since she started. While I might not have that kind of dedication, I really want to do better by the kiddos and start documenting more embarrassing fodder for their teen years. As if having us as parents wouldn’t be damaging enough…

So I’m going to do just that: back up a couple months, to a simpler time. A time when my son wasn’t crawling up the couch and hitting his sister as if it were his day job. A time when soccer games and gymnastic nights gave my daughter something to do besides whine about how “booooring” it is at home when she doesn’t get to have any friends come over and play.

Besides: it’s my blog, dammit, and I’ll do what I want.