Thursday, July 29, 2010

Avast Ye Scurvy Dogs!!

Helppppp.....Pirates have invaded the house and they're treasure hunting in my backyard!!!

We read two pirate books today and then we pretended to be pirates and followed a map in search of treasure.  While enjoying the loots from their plunder, they watched Scooby Doo and The Pirates Ahoy.  We also made pirate hats, a pirate flag and parrots.  Nicholas actually brought home a hat, parrot and eye patch that he made during his story group at the library on Wednesday and of course Nathan wanted I made a little trip to the library in search of pirate books and helped Nathan make his own hat and parrot and a pirate flag (black poster board with a stick from the yard and a blown up pic of a skull and crossbones glued to the board).

I also made a map of the yard for them and hid a small box full of little treasures to find.  I used one of Rich's old cigar boxes and filled it with small coins (from the dollar store, of course), candy necklaces and rings and scooby gummy snacks....I know, not the healthiest of food, but hey you gotta live sometimes!

To make the map, I taped four pieces of paper together and crumpled them up.  Next, I drew on the map.  Then I used tea bags dipped in hot water to age the paper.  I even broke one bag open and let some of the tea get on the paper, giving it a dirt effect.  After it dried, I burned the edges of the map. 

I printed out a picture of a parrot for Nathan to color and cut it out.  I glued them together with a "pinchy" clothes pin in the middle to help the parrot sit on his shoulder.

The boys then dubbed themselves Captain Smarty Pants (Nicholas) and First Mate Natters (Nathan) and off they went in search of the treasure.

(First Mate Natters said he had to pee......hehehehehe)

The books we read were I Love My Pirate Papa by Laura Leuck and Don't Mention Pirates by Sarah McConnell. 

Nathan really got into the whole theme coming up with phrases like Ahoy Matey, Shiver Me Timbers and Avast Ye Scurvy Dogs.  I love watching their imaginations at work! I think they enjoyed their piratey day!

And, don't worry this pirate mom was a nasty mean wench and made them brush their teeth when they were done with all that gooey booty!

Linking to stART at A Mommy's Adventures   


Birthday Paddle Machine - Funny thing was some of them were hitting a little harder than I thought they should, but he loved it and wanted to do it over and over again. . . .

The Birthday Dude!

He told me he wanted hamburgers and then after I made them...he asked for pizza

Nathan wanted a rainbow cake - Note to self: next time you make frosting, don't be cheap and not buy the special red coloring they make so your frosting is red and not pink.  It didn't matter how much red food coloring or food gel I added to that frosting - it just came out pink.

I guess the cake wasn't that bad, right? In the grand scheme of things, the only one who mattered liked it - so that counts for something.

He kept looking all over at everyone singing to him - it was hard to take a picture.

Superman/Rainbow Ice Cream

Playing with the new sprinkler toy. . .

I think it was a great birthday run for little man....between a party, scooby cupcakes with friends, tons of presents, cards in the mail and lunch at Bob Evans with his big sister and having all her work friends sing Happy Birthday to him

Building memories - now that's what it's all about!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Moms That Blog (The Interviews)

Introducing.......Helene - She's mother of two (yes, two) sets of twins.  She is hysterically funny, brutally honest and living proof that life is better when it comes in two's.   And that's what makes her a great Mom That Blogs!

Tell us a bit about yourself.......My family and I live in Northern CA, right smack in the middle of a valley. My husband, Tim, and I will have been married for 8 years, come this August...together a total of 15 years. Yes, that's 7 years of dating before he finally got a clue that I was "the one".

We endured 3 rounds of IVF when the 3rd time ended up being the charm and we were blessed with our 1st set of miracle twins, Cole and Bella. Our 2nd set of twins, Garrett and Landon, were a God-given miracle just 2 years later...very unexpected, especially after hearing from various doctors that I only had a 1-3% chance of conceiving a take-home baby without any medical intervention.

Prior to having children, I was a program director for a private foster family agency...finally putting my MA degree in Psychology to good use. While I thought my career was challenging yet rewarding, it didn't and still doesn't hold a candle to being a full-time SAHM...where the challenges occur hourly and it's a struggle sometimes to see the light at the end of the tunnel. With that said, it's the most rewarding and most fulfilling "job" I've ever had.

When did you first start blogging..........I began my blog back in January 2007, when I was about 22 weeks pregnant with our 2nd set of twins.
What is your blog about..........I write about my daily life raising multiple multiples, along with some of my thoughts on marriage, friendship and life, in general...with a whole lot of humor and sarcasm in the mix. I firmly believe that life is too short to be taken so seriously all the time. Laughter is the key to survival, my friends. And that's the truth.
Why do you blog..........To stay sane. Seriously. Honestly, on some days my blog is my only outside connection to the world. I get my comments e-mailed to me so sometimes I'll be having the worst day and all of a sudden a few comments will roll in, making me smile and not feel so all alone in this wonderful journey called life. I also hope someday when my kids are older, I'll have my blog to share with them, which perhaps will bring them many good laughs and a better insight as to who I am as a person, aside from being a mother and a wife.

Along with that, I've discovered how passionate I am about writing. I love the creativity it brings out in me. I've been working on a book for the last 2 years, which obviously has been a very slow process but also one that I'm having a lot of fun with. My blog has opened many doors for me and I've made many amazing contacts, in terms of other writers and publishers.

Must read blogs that you visit daily..........There are so many that I love that it would be difficult to list them all. But here are a few, depending on what you're looking for:

Favorite cooking blog - The Newlyweds (for all intensive purposes, it's not a cooking blog but she does share some amazing recipes!)

Favorite multiples blogs - Twinsomnia (her humor will KILL you), Buried with Children (very insightful and someone I can relate to 100%), It's Twinsanity (another mom with two sets of twins, plus 2 singletons...her strength and perserverance will most definitely inspire you), Our Heart's Journey (yet another twin mom I totally connect with, plus her boys are hysterical, as well as adorable)

Favorite craft blogs - Two Little Monkeys (another mom of twins posts some super fun kid crafts) and The Toy Box Years (her crafts are incredibly easy and very fun to do with the kids - she made the most adorable fairy garden)

Favorite travel blog - Double the Adventure (mom of twins who travels all over with her young twins and I've had the pleasure to meet her in person!)

And there are so many more blogs that are amazing...I have many listed on my blogroll on the left-hand sidebar of my blog.

What inspires you.......My kids inspire me. They provide most of the blog fodder, which I write about. I've also been known to be inspired by a chilled glass of wine (or three).

Do you have any blogging advice that you would like to share........My best advice for anyone looking to grow their blog is they have to be willing to put themselves out there...comment on other blogs, follow blogs that you enjoy, link to favorite blogs on your blog, participate in carnivals and memes. The blogosphere is an incredible place to meet others with whom you'll connect with on so many various levels but it takes effort to sustain, just like everything else in life! Most of all, have fun with it...and keep it REAL!

You can read more about Helene by checking out her blog at I'm Living Proof That God Has a Sense of Humor.   Click HERE to read one of my most recent favorites by Helene.

I'm Living Proof That God has a Sense of Humor

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Top Ten Things

On this very day, five years ago, the brightest little beam of sunshine entered into our lives.....Nathaniel Marcus. 

The Top Ten Things We Love About Nathan

1.  He is and always has been the BIGGEST cuddle bug EVER.  He loves to sit in our laps and hang out, whether we are reading books, singing songs or just watching tv he is perfectly content to hang out with us.

2.  From the day he was born, everyone fought over who got to hold him or feed they still fight over who gets to play with him or sit beside him.

3.  He brings joy to our lives.  No matter how awful the day may be or how horrible life may seem, as soon as he smiles - he brightens our day.

4.  No matter how old he gets, he will ALWAYS be the baby.

5,  He is happy with the simplest things...a sprinkle cupcake, a bag of toy soliders from the dollar store, a box of crayons and piece of paper - it's the little things that make him happy.

6.  He's a really great helper (especially when it comes to laundry)

7.  He likes hanging out with the 'big' people....even the older kids' friends love having him around.

8.  Since he's the youngest and so darn cute, he gets away with almost everything

9.  He is the best food tester a mommy could ask for...

10.  He LOVES his buddies and takes super good care of them, even tucking them in at night

Happy 5th Birthday Nathan.....We couldn't imagine our lives without you!! Love, Daddy & Mommy and Manda, Anty, Zachy, Sissy and Nic-kiss!!