Sunday, November 4, 2012

Triple Chocolate Mousse Cake

Juniper's 1st Birthday

Norah's 1st Birthday

Same cake. Same results. And if you're wondering, Juniper's birthday is on Halloween, hence the white face paint.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Ode to Tall Women (long post)

I got this email from a friend of mine (who is also tall) and her prediction for Norah's future is so accurate it's uncanny. If you are a tall woman, you'll know exactly what I mean and some of the things she writes will hit home so hard it's almost painful remembering those inescapable teenage years. I posted this picture of Norah on Facebook and her aunt said she looked five years old, 2 1/2 years her senior. This email could be prophetic. And I wouldn't complain if Lincoln became my son-in-law.
Remember a long time ago when you said if you had to pick a spouse for Norah right then you would pick Lincoln? Here is what I see playing out. Norah leads a perfectly awesome life ... until middle school when she realizes she is 6 feet tall and the boy closest to her in height at school is 5'6". She realizes there are no boys to have crushes on. It's pretty okay though, because she is awesome ... and everyone promises the boys will grow by high school. Then she goes to high school and there are a handful of boys that are her height or taller but they all have crushes on the 4'11" cheerleader who just happens to be named Natalie. Ugh. But she feigns confidence in her height (and just happens to be a shoe in to the volleyball, basketball and track elite groups). It's not until high school is behind her that boys start showing up in adequate sizes. She meets a boy the likes of Andy Jorgenson when she goes off to college, but he dumps her to 'prepare for his mission.' (What does that even mean?) She dates a series of boys her own height and nothing seems to really fit. She finds another tall boyfriend, but it turns out that his height is about all he has going for him. (And he might be gay). She lowers her standard to someone her own height again and that sours. So, she goes for someone a little shorter. It turns out that middle school was the best preparation ground for the rest of her life. This shorter man is just what she needs for eternal happiness. And that is why I still think we should arrange a marriage for Lincoln and Norah. And, and because I think Norah is beautiful and I know my boys are going to be shallow.

 P.S. Her boys are not going to be shallow. I don't arrange marriages to short, shallow men.

Friday, August 3, 2012


Bags. Bags with books. Bags with DVDs. Bags with a princess dress and undies and sippy cups and Juni's toys and snacks and outfits to wear in Pocatello (which I have to explain over and over that we're not going back there for a month). I tell her we're going swimming in two days and she packs a bag with sunblock and beach towels and the whole family's swimsuits and undies and clothes to wear afterward. Then she empties the bag in the living room and starts all over.

Future star of Hoarders? Or maybe she plans to travel a lot like Rick Steves (we really call him Uncle Rick at our house). Or maybe she's planning to runaway. But I'd only encourage that if she had a particularly outstanding skill like August Rush. But, hey, what am I talking about? She can pack like the cutest rat you've ever seen.

P.S. I realize half these bags are empty, which is evidence that this photo was not staged and that it was only 9:30 am--a whole lot of packing time left in the day.

Saturday, June 9, 2012


at Big Bun

Norah knows the basic food groups: chocolate, chocolate milk, sprinkles, and meat. (Buddy the elf got it wrong.) I told her we were going to go get fruit and vegetables when we went to pick up our 'bountiful basket.'  "They  put hamburgers in there?" she asked.  "No, just fruits and vegetables."  A minute later from the back seat, she asked in a concerned voice, "Daddy, you buy some meat?"

That's how she got so strong.
Doing the caber toss or fighting off the wolves or making things pretty with a magic wand at the rose garden on our daddy-daughter date.

Pistachio milkshake at Big Bun.  Juni recommends Reese's Peanut Butter instead.

Juni knows how to party no matter what she eats.  Especially at 3 a.m. With screams.

Monday, May 21, 2012


Look closely. Although I suppose it doesn't take an all that up-close look to notice the one word that:
a) stands out like a red light
b) is PG-13 rated and
c) neither Andy nor I actually found in the entire 120 seconds we had to list all the words we could find on this Boggle board.

I suppose this reflects that we are:
a) pure in heart or
b) too busy playing Boggle when we could have been doing other things.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Kinda crazy with a spooky little (cheesy) girl like you

Norah isn’t the worst at going to bed, but she isn’t the best either. Usually she makes odd demands to prolong her time awake: to go “pp toilet” after she just finished, for her baby dolls which she could care less for during the day, and her favorite “more cheese” (Usually it’s something specific and elaborate for a two-year old, like “one big cheese and one little cheese” or “white cheese and yellow cheese.”)
Tonight she asked for a third round of cheese and I lied to her and told her we were all out.
“Buy it” is always her answer.
Then somehow I carelessly mentioned that I was going to the store after she went to sleep. Hilary had already gone to bed. I left out the front door shortly later and drove to the grocery store and bought a couple things and came home about 25 minutes later. As I pulled up I noticed a dark area in Norah’s window contrasting with the beige curtains. That’s a funny shadow, I thought to myself, how weird would that be if it was Norah on the inside of the curtain, watching the neighborhood?
As I walked up to the front door, I hear a muffled voice say “daddy.”
I jumped. After I finished feeling spooked I felt impressed by her fortitude to have knelt in the windowsill in the three-inch space between the glass and the curtain for who knows how long, watching the night fall on her front yard.
Still standing outside, I asked her, “What are you doing Norah?”
“Watching out the window.”
From our conversation after I came inside, I realized that from inside her window she had watched me leave and had been waiting for me to go to the store, buy some cheese, come back, cut her a slice, and bring it in to her bedroom.
So I gave her cheese and a cracker.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

little girls galore

Fancy 'Do at Grandma Sandi's Beauty Parlor.

Juniper shows Great Grandpa Jack how to eat a hand sandwich.

Sisters rock (badabing!)

7:20 a.m. She woke up early to make sure daddy didn't skip brushing his teeth again and would later report back to mom.

Her first solid foods. She'll probably grow up to have magnolia super powers now.

Tummy time. With less drool than Norah's tummy time. Also Juniper rolls over now I guess. KOABD (Kind of a big deal) But not for her. Juniper's like, "WIDAKOSBYDNBIT2B" (Whatever, I do all kinds of stuff but y'all don't notice because I'm the 2nd baby)

Below--Classic Norah face.I asked Norah what color Juni's and mommy's eyes were. She knew--Blue. I asked her what color her eyes were and she said blue. Sorry Norah, you got daddy color eyes.

Mom, put the camera down. Are we gonna talk or are we gonna walk the walk?

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leap Year

I wanted to start a Leap Year tradition that my childrens' children would continue to enjoy. I thought and thought and then it hit me--Fish 'n Chips! Now, if you're like my husband you think on an obscure plane and have no idea how fish and chips are in any way related to Leap Year.

Follow me here. Leap, jump, kangaroo, Australia, fish and chips. Ridiculously simple, I know. And if you're thinking that fish and chips are an English thing and not an Autralian thing, let me correct you now before we have to call my Kiwi friend, Melissa Nakaya, again to settle any disputes. Other than her family, that deep fried delicacy is the one thing she misses from home. I told her that if it turned out well I would make it again and have her over for dinner sometime, which means we'll still have to be friends February 29, 2016 because that's the next time I'm going to make this dish. Not only is it a little labor intensive, but my arteries need some time to cool off.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Chestnut, Smith, Reagan, Wilson Go Camping at the Lake

Chestnut, Smith, Reagan, Wilson Go Camping at the Lake
by Hilary E. Smith

[Excerpt. The story begins with our protagonist and narrator (Smith, we presume) going to the mall with her 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade teachers. After they purchase a jean jacket, a jean shirt, tight leg jeans (Smith will never wear bell bottoms, we learn from other writings), boat shoes, a pink bow and a pink shirt, they discuss starting a rock band]

We looked so cool that this rock star guy came up to us and said, "Do you want to be in my band?"

"No thanks. We don't like your kind of music. We like our kind. They are: Beach Boys, Fat Boy, and Biesty Boys. On Beach and Fat Boys, we like Wipe Out. On Biesty Boys, we like 'I have a little story I've got to tell about three bad brothers you know so well.'"

So we walked away and went back to our apartment and just laid down our beds.

All of the sudden things just disappeared. So we called our number of our police department but it was someone else's phone number. So we got our squirt guns, put milk in it and squirted it at him and it made that person come to life. It was Jeff, Shawn, Greg, and Cory. We told them to get out.


We put on their least best song and it was our best song.

"Ugggghhh." And they left.

Then Mrs. Chestnut thought of an idea. "We could make our own band."
"That would be rad," said Laura.
"We have to be back Wednesday," said Mrs. Wilson.
"It's not like we're some neat, cool, rad people," I said.
"Yeah," said Mrs. Wilson.
"We don't need a band."
"Well, that is true, but..."
"See you even proved it."
"Well, I'm leaving."
"Please don't leave."
"Well, o.k. what are we doing in the band?"
"See, since I know Wipe Out the best," I said, "Let me be the lead singer."
"O.k., since you can do the Waa wa a wa wa wa waooo," Mrs. Chestnut said.
"Laura, you play the guitar and Mrs. Wilson, you play drums."

So we got up and practiced on the stage. We got it perfect on our first practice so we made tickets for the next day.

We got up and tried to sing but we couldn't. Everybody was screaming. We got confused and messed up so we went back home.

Since we were home, the house was a mess, so we cleaned it.

We wanted to go to Miami, Bahamas, and Florida so we voted. We live in Georgia so we were pretty close to all of them.

We wanted to go to Bahamas then Miami then Florida because then we would be back home.

We went to the Bahamas and had a blast. Then we went to Miami, it was okay. Then we went to Florida. We had a blast. First we got organized, then we went swimming of course. We had a big party. We invited everyone to it. We got packed and went home. When we got there, we saw that a robber was in the house, so we called up the police and they got him.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Elves and Wives

Andy occasionally compares his life to that of the cobbler who, upon waking every morning, had a new pair of shoes made in his shop.

"My tee shirt drawer is empty one day, then all of a sudden it's magically full again," he'll say.

What the cobbler doesn't understand is that there's no such thing as elves, but there is such thing as a wife.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

I Hear Pink is the New Black

So this is what might happen if you go into labor and ask me to watch your son but do not provide any clothes for him because you are trying to rush to the hospital.

Don't worry, Tyson. Andy says he won't take away your man card.