Sunday, December 25, 2011

A Lifelong Ambition, Fulfilled

I have always wanted to make homemade bagels. Now I have:

They were delicious for Christmas luncheon!!

Merry Christmas To You

What should I tell you about? The fit that Rose #2 threw right before we had to leave? She didn't want to wear her black clothes (king's page) under her white clothes (Heavenly Host). "It feels weird..."

Or Rose #3 marching right in to put on her costume and twirl and charm all assembled, including the 5:30 Mary (who Rose #3 kept calling "Jesus," and then saying, "I get mixed up!")?

Or Rose #1 gamely putting on her children's choir/graduation gown and white stole?
Or me, sitting in the pews watching it all and being brought back to when I was a little girl, doing the exact same thing as my daughters are doing now?

Merry Christmas to all of you.  I hope you are all having a wonderful day of family, good food, and even a few presents.

Friday, December 23, 2011

If It's December 23rd...

It must be the Christmas pageant rehearsal at church! I remember in years past feeling like I had just barely been able to escape work. One year I even met Aunt Brenna at the door at Unity; she had been nannying for us for the week and the end of her week was delivering the girls to the pageant rehearsal.  I remember she looked distinctly relieved when I finally showed up!

Anyway, this year we have Rose #3 as a Heavenly Host (if you look very carefully you will see that she has candy cane tattoos on her neck):

We also have a repeat appearance as a King's Page.  Rose #2 is a page to the Green King this time (last year she was purple):

Rose #1 is in the Children's Choir.  No photos of her today since the choir doesn't have to come to pageant rehearsal.  Such is the passage of time that Rose #1 stayed home during the rehearsal, most of the time with H but also part of the time alone while he ran errands.  I remember when Rose #1 was one of the cherubs, a 4-year-old with her Guppy sitting proudly in the pews at the 5:30 service.  Sigh.

This year I am not the parent chaperone in the Heavenly Host room at the 4:00 service.  I am the parent chaperone with the children's choir at the 4:00 service.  I am OK with change, truly I am.  As we were waiting for the group photo of the pageant case I heard Rob, our minister, describing to someone how one year he changed the script of the pageant at the very end.  There is a little bit of a prayer at the end, and the final words are "The Work Of Our Hands, Establish Thou It."  Rob changed it to, "The Work Of Our Hands, Establish Thou The Work of Our Hands."  This caused much angst - you just don't change the pageant.  I guess sometimes you have to change the room in which you are the parent chaperone, though.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Rose #3 and I Went Shopping

Sometimes you just have to take your girly girl shopping for a new Christmas dress...

As we were trying on all 5 candidates in the dressing room, I got the idea to show Rose #3 what she looked like in each of the dresses!  And then I had a memory of watching the movie Clueless where Cher takes Polaroids of herself each of her outfit concepts to see how they look.  A star was born (in purple):
This one was my favorite (since it is a Christmas dress, after all, and it came WITH the cardigan):
I like the little cap sleeves on this one:
This was Rose #3's pick...can you tell from the way her eyes cut to the side in a flirtatious manner?
In the end, we compromised on this one, and somehow this is the picture that ended up looking the blurriest.  A pity, but cute even though blurryish: On one hand, Rose #3 really doesn't need any more dresses. She has a number of very cute ones in her closet. On the other hand, it is very nice to be able to get a new dress at Christmastime. We are lucky that we can do that.

Still Here

Sometimes I get just overwhelmed with sadness about Guppy's death, and then the thought of writing about anything is too overwhelming. That happened in mid-November, in the midst of my optimistic attempt at NaBloPoMo, and then I just couldn't stand to even pull up my blog for a few weeks. Why is grief so unexpected and sudden and all encompassing sometimes?

But we're still here, never fear. I have a treasure trove of pictures from Christmas dress shopping with Rose #3. Do you remember the movie Clueless where the Alicia Silverstone character had to take pictures of her potential outfits to see how they might look? That's a preview of the photos that await you. Rose #3 found 5 - yes, 5 - potential dresses and I gamely took a picture of each one in the dressing room at Herberger's. Which Rose #3 got confused and called Burger King. You had to be there, I guess, but it was funny.

More to come. We're still here. We're still grieving and sad. I'm told that I'll be that way my whole entire life. Can't wait.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Tired Thursday

Don't take too long brushing your teeth, or Rose #3 might fall asleep on you:

And my little reader, Rose #2, actually took to her bed when requested and is reading a storybook:
Rose #1 (Hat Hair!) is the lone rebel who is not in her bed yet:
We had all three Roses' conferences over the past week. Rose #1 is a very earnest student. Her reading level is very advanced, and she works hard in math and excels in phy ed. Rose #2 got high reading marks as well and is advancing as a mathematician. Her Visual Arts scores were her highest scores. Rose #3 is a big, big helper in kindergarten. She is doing so well on her reading: she knows all the sight words on the kindergarten wall, and tonight she filled out a counting sheet on which she counted to 100! (I love how little kids make their 9s backwards. So cute.)

I am always relieved when conferences are over and everyone is on track. Are the teachers evaluating us at the same time they evaluate the girls? I don't know how they can help but do that. I certainly would, in their shoes. We have really been blessed with excellent teachers so far, and this year is no exception.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

When Left To Our Own Devices...

We did fuse beads last night!

Mine is the car (boring). I wanted to use the square, but I was outflanked. I didn't think I could top the brown dog - isn't is clever? The star and heart were already in use. Sigh. Fuse beads are actually pretty fun, whichever shape you get.

Rose #2 kind of guilted me into playing with the kids last night - why I didn't post actually - and it made me reflect that I hardly ever do actually get to just sit down and play with them. My mother never played with me either. Now that I am the mom, I guess I understand: I always, always, always have something to do - laundry! Picking up! Making lunches for tomorrow! Work work! I guess my mom always had something to do times 7; mine is just times 3. Plus working full time. Maybe that equates to 7.

Monday, November 14, 2011

An Old Photo of Flowers

I didn't take any new photos today, but I came across this old one on my camera from April 10, 2011:

On the one-year anniversary of Guppy's death my entire extended family provided the flowers for church. They were absolutely gorgeous. They were, um, rather large - we chipped in quite a bit of money all together and got a lot of flowers. Here are the Roses and me posing with the flowers at church:

And lest you think it was all peaceful and reflective, in fact, this is what most of my life is like ("Don't twirl by the flowers! You'll knock them over and break them and send a bunch of water and dirt over the altar! Stop! I told you to stop twirling!"):

It's funny the way that time goes by. For the longest time I could hardly even bear to look at these pictures on my camera; I rolled past them a bunch of times when I was looking at which photos to post or to delete. I am finally able to look at these and remember that day - and just think, if I am able to take out and process memories of the one-year anniversary of Guppy's death, in another decade or so I should be ready to process the actual day she died! This is real progress, my friends. When they tell you that everyone grieves in their own way, they are absolutely right. Why should I be surprised that I am a total weirdo in this when I am also a total weirdo in so many other areas of my life?

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Back from Vacay...

Oooo,I missed posting last night. That's because we were in Wisconsin Dells, and there was no wi fi at the hotel, at least no wi fi that we could easily access. So now I'm catching up. We went to a water park at Wisconsin Dells, where the Three Musketeers suited up for swimming (this is the first day on our way out to the first waterpark - there were three):

And this is the last morning, this morning, after I made them get out of the wave pool. I didn't suit up for swimming this morning, so I stood on the side of the pool and screamed like a fishwife for them to hang onto the tube! Hang on! Two Hands!! Finally the lifeguard asked me if they could actually swim (I said yes, which in the case of Rose #3 is only a slight exaggeration):
Before we left I was required to make good on my promise to let them play laser tag:
Rose #1 was very serious about laser tag and wanted to make sure her equipment was in working order:
Who knew that H wanted to play too?
Ah, Wisconsin Dells, we hardly got a chance to fully explore you. So many waterparks and resorts, so little time. Perhaps we will return anon.

I'm Getting a Niece AND a Nephew!

This evening after returning from Wisconsin Dells, H and I went to a sex party.

No, not THAT kind of party...the kind of party where the gender of my brother and sister-in-law's babies was revealed! My brother Eli has known since Tuesday and was able not to breathe a word to anyone. Despite repeated attempts to pry it out of him (by me and others)...

They revealed the big surprise by having Wuollet's bake two cakes. The color of the cake revealed each baby's sex. Here is Baby B's cake:

And here is baby A's cake:

(Here is a random shot of Baby Duncan, who will be the boss of Baby A, the twin who is likely to be born first):
They asked the dads to come stand behind the table with the cakes. Poppy cut the first piece of Baby A's cake:
Here's my beautiful sister in law and Poppy:
And here is my brother with a piece from each cake. Baby A is a girl and Baby B is a boy:
CONGRATULATIONS! So, so, so, so happy about my twin niece and nephew!!!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Wisconsin Dells!

The Roses, H and I are here in Wisconsin Dells. They have snow here, unlike home. Posting from H,s phone, v tricky. More later!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Asleep on my feet (Post 10 of 30!)

Can hardly type...fell asleep while putting Rose #3 to bed...rousted out of Rose #3's bed by Rose #1's earnest implorings..."You Have To Post, Mom!"

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Fortune Tellers (Post 9 of 30)

Tonight we made fortune tellers. Rose #1's is "Mr. Know It All." I hope it doesn't know everything, since I asked it 1) if I would be professionally successful and 2) if i would become a Pulitzer-prize winning author. It said "NO" on both accounts. Stupid Fortune Teller.

Rose #3 made a fortune teller too. She decided that her fortune teller was a Taiwanese gymnast. (Um, what?) Here she is posing with it like a beloved child:
And here is just a generally goofy picture:
Fortune tellers are a cross that every parent has to bear. The agony of being asked to pick a color. (Last night Rose #3 whispered to herself: "Red. Please pick red." This is because "red" is the only color word she can spell, and everyone who is anyone knows that the first step of operating the fortune teller is to spell the color that the hapless victim selected as you work your hand to make the fortune teller open and close.) The trial of picking a number, and then another number. The tribulation of listening to the actual fortune ("you are nice," "you are stupid," or unfortunately for me, just "NO").

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Tuesday Tribulations (Post 8 of 30! Yay!)

Tonight is H's class night, so it's just me and the girls. We ate a hurried dinner (hooray for frozen ravioli!) and rushed over to the rec center to vote. Then we came home for cleanup, including showers. I thought it would be a delightful surprise to pick out a (Mommy-style) outfit for Rose #3 while she was in the shower:

It didn't go over very well ("You don't know ANYTHING about FASHION! I am the ONE who KNOWS about FASHION!" Alas, this is true.):
Rose #2 found a mask from her Harry Potter book and insisted that I take a picture of her (for some reason I think that her mouth looks like me in this picture...ah, grasping at straws for a mother whose children do not resemble her in the slightest):
Technically, this picture is cheating. I took it last night after Rose #1 fell asleep on the radiator in my room. Um, ouch. Uncomfortable!
Harrison's classes are almost over, for good! Hooray! You're all invited to the graduation party (next spring)!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Running Low on a Monday...

The contrast between Sunday and Monday is always kind of a shock. Get up early on Sunday because you want to; get up early on Monday because you have to. Work around the house on Sunday; work at work on Monday. All of my best laid plans and organization that I try to implement on the weekend is out the door by Monday at 5:30 p.m.

This is a wimpy way of saying that I don't have much for you today, no good pictures or pithy sayings. We all went to our respective destinations (work, work, 4th grade, 2nd grade, and kindergarten) today, then met briefly at Monday Night Dinner, then off to appointments and now back home, exhausted in bed. It is 10:30 (really only 9:30 but as we just set the clocks back yesterday, everyone is acting like it's 10:30!). And now it's time for bed.


Sunday, November 6, 2011

And Now It Is Sunday Night (Post 6 of 30)

So this pretty much sums it up. How MANY times have I said, "Pick Up That Candy Off the Floor! Or I Will Have No Choice But To Throw It In The Garbage!"? Not enough, apparently, because great Tupperwares of candy keep being dumped out on the floor. Sigh. I have found, by the way, that Smarties can 1) be stolen quite easily and 2) don't have that many calories. Shhh!

We are all looking down the face of Monday morning, and it's not a pretty sight. Especially since a certain someone awoke at 5:30 a.m. and has not napped. I'll give you three guesses about who it is:
Really, we should stop letting Rose #2 stay up until 12:30 a.m. watching Disney XD (JUST KIDDING! SHE DIDN'T REALLY!):
We don't usually let this one out of the house. She gets too darn excited about the most everyday things! Cell phones! Automobiles! Vanilla (flavored) ice cream!
I hate to see a weekend come to an end. Back into the heavy grind...the workaday/schooladay world...

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Saturday With the Roses (Post #5 of 30)

And so Friday turned into Saturday...on which we went to the library and filled up our book bag:
And Rose #3 went to gymnastics (please, oh please, oh please disregard the extremely full garbage can behind her...someday I will learn how to use photoshop or even learn how to compose a photo):

Saturday is also allowance day, and although this isn't one week's allowance (it is several, several), this is what we normally do on allowance day. Eat Sea Salt & Vinegar Pringles and spread out our dollar bills all over the table:

And after the library we did go to the Red Balloon, which is a very nice kids' book store on Grand Avenue. They are so wonderful. They give out red balloons (who would have thought it!) and Annie Barrows, the author of the Ivy and Bean series, will be there on November 19th! We're totally going to go and have Rose #1's copies of all 7 books that we own (so far!) autographed!

It was a lovely day. I love Saturdays!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Friday Night Sleepover (Post 4 of 30!)

And so we made it to Friday night! The Roses' cousins are sleeping over tonight! The younger cousins are in the basement watching TV (don't worry, they don't get to watch TV all week; they've earned it):

This one is lolling about on the trampoline. She is longish in the torso, which is why her belly button is showing:

Rose #2 called me "paparazzi" when I came downstairs with the camera and scooted behind the column...

And darling Maddie Kay with her long hair:

Rose #1 and Sam are reading "Nate the Great" books in the easy chair:

Aren't they so darn cute? I remember when we laid them together side by side on a blanket on the floor when they were tiny babies. Now they choose to sit side by side and read together. Love it!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Merrily We Roll Along (3 of 30! Woot!)

Today at school Rose #3 made me a special surprise. A secret book! Can you read it below? ("Mommy and Me Secret Book")

The book is for Mom and Rose #3 Lin (OK, my whole anonymity thing is wearing a little thing, but still...):
In the book, I am blonde and very, very tall. Also I wear halter dresses that go up to my neck and go down to mid-thigh. And my blonde, blue-eyed children are only knee-high to me:
The artist herself actually prefers her Dad:
But she looks very cute when she is done in the shower:
Rose #2 is supposed to read out loud every night for 10 minutes. I would say that she does it about 80% of the time. Tonight she is reading the Chronicles of the Red King:
Here's her closeup:
And Rose #1 gets to play Khan Academy (which is an online math program that Harrison really likes and is willing to bend the "no screen time" rule to let the girls work on during the week):
I know I've said it before, but we are so tired by Thursday night, I am always secretly glad when it's over and there haven't been any terrible tantrums - theirs or mine.

Everybody's Workin' For the Weekend!