Tuesday, June 26, 2007

AND,... we're back!

I always find that coming back from vacation is somewhat bittersweet. It's great to come back to what's familiar: your home, sleeping in your own bed and getting settled back into your routine. But leaving behind family and beaches and pool time and the fact that the toughest decision we made was where to go for dinner, well that actually leaves me feeling quite melancholic.

We had a fabulous time while in Florida. Since the main purpose of the trip was for Isabella to get to know her cousins, we stayed away from doing the "touristy" things we've done in our previous visits and focused on spending as much quality time as we could with the kids. Isabella absolutely loved spending time and playing with her cousins whom she had only met once before (they drove up last year for her first birthday). She liked to chase and be chased by Yan Karlo, she loved playing with Sabrina's toys, but she was totally smitten with Emanuel, and who can blame her being that he is quite the charmer.

We went to the pool a couple of times, went to the beach, ate way too much and lounged rather frequently. Certainly a great time by my standards.

Here's a picture of our "surfer" girl.

Although quite skeptical about being in the water, Isabella really enjoyed playing with the sand at the beach.

Meet Yan Karlo ~ the funny one with an endless supply of energy.

Meet Sabrina ~ sweet, considerate and a mini me of her mama.

Meet Emanuel ~ the charmer who melted Isabella's heart.

And finally, here they all are.

Thank you so much Yaira for your amazing hospitality and generosity. We had such a great time and can't wait to see you guys again.

Monday, June 18, 2007

busy, busy, busy

It seems like it's been so busy around here, I don't even know where to start.

On Saturday I took a much needed photography class at Wolf Camera in the morning which was awesome. I feel so much more comfortable playing with my "big" camera now that I know what all the settings are and how and when to use them. I finally feel like I can start using the camera to its full potential. I'm thinking I'm going to give my "little" camera a much deserved break for a while. I should have looked into these classes sooner being that I've owned this camera since October of last year. Well, I guess that's what procrastination gets you.

We had such a wonderful Father's Day yesterday. We woke up, had breakfast, went to church, came home, opened cards and presents, had some awesome ribs for lunch, courtesy of Scott's new grilling addiction, and then crashed for a couple of hours. I'm not really a big napper, but every now and then it is just what the doctor ordered. After our naps we went outside to the backyard to play and have yummy homemade fruit smoothies.

Today Christie and Madison kept Isabella in the morning giving me a chance to run some last minute errands before we leave for Florida on Thursday. It's amazing how much you can accomplish when you don't have to worry about chasing around after a toddler, and instead you can focus on doing what you need to get done. WOW! Isabella is currently taking her afternoon nap and I am trying to get the laundry done and tie some other loose ends. Well, off I go before she wakes up.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Thank goodness for tolerant dogs,...

We are so lucky to have the dogs we do. Mick and Copper have turned out to be such wonderful pets. There's really not much you can do to upset them, except maybe try to get between them and a really succulent meaty bone (but then again, I might even snap at you if you try to get between me and a really succulent meaty bone). They are extremely tolerant and mild-tempered, especially when it pertains to Isabella, as seen here:

As Isabella sits on our 100lb Rottweiler with her soaking wet bathing suit after playing in her pool, she joyfully informs me: "Look Mama, Mickey is a neigh neigh". Now, is it just me or does Mick look like he's actually smiling?

I would have included a picture of Copper, but he was not interested in participating in our Sunday afternoon outdoor activities. Instead he was indoor lying on the couch enjoying the A/C, which is exactly where you can always find him.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Date Night Lowdown

Seriously, you know we don't get out much as a couple when I'm excited enough to chronicle last night's date night on the blog. But we really did have such a nice night.

Technically, last night marked the end of Liz's Birthday Week Celebration (as you can probably tell, birthdays are a BIG deal in our home). Anyway, Scott decided we needed some alone time so that we could have a nice "grown-up" meal, uninterrupted adult conversations, a glass of wine or two and end the evening with a late night movie. Our wonderful friend and neighbor Christie came over and stayed with Isabella and off we went.

We enjoyed a fabulous meal at Owen Brennan's, including their famous Bananas Foster dessert. YUM! Since our "late night" movie didn't start until 9:25pm (which trust me, is quite late for me these days), we decided to kill some time at Border's.

Last, but not least, we went to see our movie. Before Isabella was born, Scott and I went to the movies at least once every single weekend. As of last night, neither one of us could remember the last time we'd been there together. Kinda sad, isn't it. Anyway, we saw Ocean's Thirteen and it was awesome! I just love those guys and the chemistry between them, not to mention they are quite easy on the eye.

So that was our jammed packed date night, but you know what? I'm so glad we got to enjoy time together, just the two of us. It was a long time coming.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007


For the last couple of weeks I've been wondering what I would feel like today,... you see today is my 35th birthday. Since I have yet to have a birthday affect me in a negative way, and somewhere deep inside I feel it's inevitable, I thought for sure this would be the one. Well, I'm ecstatic to report ~ it's not!

This is what 35 looks like on me:

(Gotta love these self-portraits)

Not much has changed in the last year. My hair is darker due to my desperate attempts to hide ALL the gray and I have more laugh lines on my face (but seriously, who can complain about too much laughter?). Other than that, I feel exactly the same. I really haven't had any life-changing experiences or any deep epiphanies about my life, but I guess it doesn't matter since I feel that I'm in a really good place right now.

This morning I woke up to a delicious breakfast in bed, a card and a gifts compliments of my wonderful hubby. Thanks Cakes, what an awesome surprise!

I then took Isabella to the movies for the first time to see Open Season. She did so much better than I had expected, having only one serious melt-down the entire time we were there. That was followed by lunch and play time at McDonald's. On the books for tonight is going out to dinner and later enjoying some mouth-watering ice cream cake.

So here's to turning 35, but feeling 28. To friends, family, love, laughter and all the other wonderful things I am blessed with every single day.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Do not be fooled,...

despite what the picture shows, she's got him wrapped around HER finger, and he loves every little bit of it.

Friday, June 1, 2007

New Duda Shoes

We got Isabella some new shoes today. I have a sneaking suspicion that she really likes them considering this is the pose I got when I asked her to look at me for a picture:

This child can say words like backpack, strawberries, careful, airplane and elephant very clearly, but ask her who Dora is and she instantly replies Duda.

So here she is ~ Isabella wearing, and loving, her new Duda shoes.