Monday, December 20, 2010

Tree Decorating

I never thought I would be the kind of parent that would dread things like decorating the Christmas tree....but alas, I'm not perfect. I know - you are SHOCKED!!

I was really debating whether I wanted to put forth all the energy to pull the tree out, decorate it, take it know the drill. But with Reilly being 4.5, she was really asking for the tree and how could you have Santa come over with no tree. So, Mommy guilt took over. While Mike was on a week-long business trip, I pulled out the tree and we started decorating. The girls did a good job helping me with the lights. Reilly found the end of each one and started stringing them together. I was very impressed! And Brooke held on to the string so she could "help."

Once we got to the ornaments (note, no pictures)...Reilly still did great putting them on. She didn't really get the concept of spreading them out, but still. Brooke on the other hand, would take off two for every one that Reilly put on. After about 15 minutes, I decided it would be best to do a little each day :-) I mean, spreading out the fun is better, right?!?

So after about 3 days, the tree was up. I did skip tinsel this year - but really, I like it without! And less mess! It isn't a PERFECT tree, but it's our tree. Each day Reilly adds a new decoration, which adds to the fun.

Now....about taking it down...

Thursday, December 16, 2010


We had a busy, and fun 8 nights of Chanukah! The girls were very excited to open their gifts each night, and especially enjoyed an afternoon with Grandma Trudy, Aunt Lauren, Uncle Zo and Cousins Rachel and Ben!

On one night Reilly sung with her class at a community celebration, and we got to watch an ice sculptor make a menorah.

Monday, December 13, 2010

November in California - Part 2

After we had a fabulous time in Sacramento, we headed to San Francisco for two days. We met up with Cousin Maera, and let the girls have a playdate in the city. The enjoyed a morning of bagels and running around the city. We took them for walks, went shopping, and went to see the big Christmas tree in Union Square. It was a great trip!

Brooke, Reilly and cousin Maera

Checking out the Union Square Christmas tree

Watching the ice skaters in Union Square

Sunday, December 12, 2010

November in California - Part 1

We just had a fabulous trip to California. We took the girls out to spend Thanksgiving with my family in Sacramento. The key right now is to keep them busy, so we did! We took them out on walks with their Aunts, we took them to the snow, we took them shopping - and they met Santa. It was a good trip that is told best through pictures...

Snow sledding with Aunt Amanda and Aunt Patricia

Mommy and Brookie

Here is our "binky" snowman

Lounging on the stairs with Aunt Patricia

With our cousins, Logan and Lucien!

Heading out on a walk with Amanda and Patricia

Out for a cold California walk

Meeting Santa!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Pumpkin Patch

This has been a very fun season. And while I am late getting these post up, I am enjoying going back to look at the photos and videos. We had a great time at the pumpkin patch. The girls picked out their pumpkins and had a fun time. In 2006 we started a tradition of taking the same picture at the same continue that - here is my photo montage of all the years.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Brooke's Born!

Okay, okay you caught me. She was born over two years ago. And that was how long it took me to get this pulled together. But at long last, I present, her birth video!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

I know...I know...

I've been awful about updating lately. Truth is, I planned this whole post for Brooke's birthday which included her birth video. I spent hours on it the night before her birthday. Then all I needed to do was add music, but instead I went to bed. Gah!! And since then I haven't had a moment to update. I will though, I promise. As soon as somebody else goes to work for me and picks up my kids from school, and does my laundry, and gives the kids baths...

Okay, so that is never going to happen. I guess I just need to make it happen!!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Leaving a Legacy

The kids didn't want to sleep tonight. I tried to put Brooke down, as usual at 7:30 - but she wasn't having it. We went through the entire routine and she wouldn't go to sleep. I knew I was in for it if I steered from routine, but I did it anyways. I let her stay up awhile longer and play with Reilly. At 8:30 I put them both in bed and read books...again. At the end of books, they both lost their mind - i mean, they were exhausted at this point. Reilly started crying for "Daaaaaaaadddddddddy," who was off playing racquetball. Brooke started climbing out of her bed, screaming and limbs flailing.

At long last, they calmed down. Brooke laid to one side of me, and Reilly to the other. I watched Brooke as her arms and legs twitched - the sign that she is asleep, but just barely. Sucking on her binky, with her blanky covering her face - as she falls asleep every time. I felt Reilly snuggling up to my back, her arms around me, one arm around my side, the other one over my heart. Reilly was still awake, but calm -- and all was quiet.

As a mother, you always wonder what your kids will remember from their childhood - what the fond memories will be - after you are gone. (I hope to be around for another 70 years, but still, I wonder!) I found myself laying there, wishing they would remember that tender moment. The moment that I sat and watched them breathe, and felt their tiny little hands, and watched the curls of Brooke's hair bounce with her deep breathes, and felt Reilly's little fingers play a drum beat on my heart.

I don't care if they remember the trips to Disney, or the days at the beach, or the presents that we buy them. I hope they remember how much we love them, and all the tender moments we have, and will share.

I love my girls!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Halloween in the Air

The girls wore their new Halloween PJ's, so you know I had to take a couple pictures! Brooke was so excited that she was dancing around!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Ocean Time

Living in Florida you would think we visit the beach often, but really we don't. I can probably count the number of times we have gone in the 5 years (5 years this week, by the way!) we have lived here. Well today, we took both girls to the ocean - separately.

For months Reilly has wanted to go fishing. Our good friends Paul and Holly were nice enough to let them come down for an awesome fishing trip. Mike and Reilly headed down south early in the morning to do some fishing. Reilly had a GREAT time, and said driving the boat was her favorite part...see for yourself:

A couple hundred miles north, Brooke went to the beach with me and Grandma. If you read my post earlier this week about love bugs, you know we are in the midst of love bug season, but honestly I think it is the worst season yet. And at the beach they were SWARMING. In this video, you'll even see them fly by the camera. But back to Brooke, she loved chasing the birds and lounging in her chair!

Thursday, September 30, 2010


Earlier this week Reilly had a Sukkot event at school, during lunch. It was too hot to go outside, so the event was moved inside and became more of a "watch your kids eat lunch" event. Not that we don't enjoy leaving the office for that ;-) In any case, here is a picture of Reilly with her friend Livia!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Love bugs!

One of the things that I have had to get used to in the last 5 years, is the amount of bugs in Florida. They are everywhere! I had never heard of love bugs before moving here, but what a crazy thing! Every May and September, just out of the blue, the state is overcome with love bugs - seriously! Just one day! And as quickly as they come, they disappear.

You walk outside, and they fly onto you and into your house. You can't walk into a store or your car without being covered. Our back patio is covered! So this weekend the girls discovered the joy of catching these slow moving creatures. Reilly did great, she let them just hang out on her hand. Brooke mastered the pincher grip, so as you can imagine she tried to destroy the population all on her own ;-) But they were both so proud to show me every one they caught!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Reilly had a great playdate last weekend with her friend David. At this age, the difference between boy and girl playdates are very noticeable. Instead of dolls and dress-up, they played guns and motorcycles - here they are on the motorcycle!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Big Girl Bed!

Bedtime has been quite the battle for us. Reilly has been ready to move from her toddler bed to a bigger bed, but we wanted to wait for Brooke to be ready to move from the crib. It seemed to us that it was best to move them sooner than later, for Reilly's sake. So we bought bunk beds! So here is Brooke on her final day in her crib...

Reilly was so excited!! She was going to sleep on the top and Brooke was going to sleep on the bottom bunk. She was talking about it for weeks! When the beds arrived, Reilly climbed right up and played. But when it came to bedtime, she was much happier snuggling up to Brooke. :-) What parent can complain about that. She has decided on her own that she will sleep on the top "when I turn 5!" So for steps...they sleep together in the bottom. And they are cute!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Girls Day

Mike went to the USF v UF game this weekend, so the girls and I had a day together. We spent a couple hours playing at one of those local indoor play places, Amaya Papaya, the girls had a blast!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Rosh Hashana

The girls got all dressed up to go to Temple for Rosh Hashana. Of course, we were rushing to get out of the house so I only snapped one picture of Brooke, instead of both girls. But here she is, patiently waiting for the rest of us to get ready!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Disney Weekend

Last weekend we took the kids to Disney. We were lucky enough to have a free night at one of our favorite resorts, so the kids played by the unbelievable pool for one day, and the second day we went to the Magic Kingdom. Reilly is tall enough to ride the big rides and braved Space Mountain!!! She was so excited, but afterwards wasn't such a fan :-). Brooke was big enough to drive the race cars and really enjoyed herself just taking in the sights and sounds. It was a really great weekend!

The view from our hotel room:

Brooke driving the race car!

Reilly with Stitch:
Reilly waiting in line for Space Mountain:

Daddy and Reilly on Astro Orbiter:
Daddy singing songs with Brooke on Tom Sawyer's Island:

Mommy on the People Mover with the girls:

BLAST FROM THE PAST...Mommy on the People Mover with the girls in January 2009:

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Shabbat Stars

Reilly and her Pre-K class were Shabbat Stars on Friday. She has talked about it for two weeks and ran around the house singing. She was so excited!! What it meant was that during weekly Shabbat, they got to get up on stage and sing a song. They did a great job and were all smiling from ear to ear! The video didn't come out fabulous, but Reilly is the one on the far right.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Tonight's Gonna be a Good Night

Reilly's favorite song! She loves to sing in the car with daddy, and often comes home singing new songs, this one has become a favorite - she sings it often!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

WHO buys that?

Have you ever found yourself in Costco wondering, WHO buys that? The answer is apparently us ;-) This bear, which Reilly has named Addison, barely fit in our car! Now she sleeps in the bed and sits at the dinner table. But she loves her!

Monday, August 30, 2010

High Tech Brooke

When we first got the iPad, Reilly took it over. She loves to play games on it, watch movies, go to the NickJr website. Well suddenly, Brooke is all over the iPad too. She really loves the Talking TomCat app, as well as this new animal app. Here is a video of her doing the animals.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

She fell asleep in her dinner..really!

Reilly skipped her nap today - as she often does on the weekend...but she was telling us she was tired and planned to go to bed early. We had no idea early meant falling asleep IN her dinner...literally. :-)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Feeding Elmo

Mealtime is a battle at house (as with probably most houses). Either the kids don't like what we made, or they are too tired to sit and eat, or they just want to play. The other night, as we were rushing to get dinner on the table, we sat Brooke down first. She was unusually quiet. When I walked over to the table, I realized it was because she was busy feeding Elmo. Apparently Elmo was hungry for corn ;-).

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Birthday Parties

Somewhere I have a picture of me, around the age of 4, standing outside of my childhood home holding a present and all dressed up for my cousin's birthday party. I love that picture - and every time the girls get ready for a birthday party, I think about it. So in honor, I snapped two pictures of Reilly this weekend before she went to her buddy Joshua's birthday party.

Friday, August 20, 2010

She won't be 4 forever

Mike and I often joke with Reilly that we wish she wouldn't grow up. The conversation usually goes something like this:

Mike: Reilly I wish you could be 4 forever!
Reilly: Nooooooooo!
Me: Come on, please!
Reilly: I can't, I have to grow up and be a mommy!

But in all seriousness, this childhood thing goes by way too fast - its not just something people tell you, its true! And while you are constantly running, and rarely have time to slow down - we really HAVE to slow down and enjoy it!

I have been feeling this a lot lately and getting sad. I'm not sure if it is because Reilly is now in Pre-K, and I know she will be going off to school next year, or if it is because Brooke isn't a baby anymore - or a combination of all that. But I just want to enjoy every moment!

One of my Facebook friends just posted a picture of her son's 5th Birthday and said in the comment, "He'll never be 4 again!" And seriously - my eyes welled up! We take too much for granted.

So yesterday - Reilly and I had doctor appointments, so I took the whole day to be with her. I didn't take a conference call, I didn't answer email - I just spent time with her. We went to the park, and I watched her laugh and play and interact with the other kids. She is growing up so fast...and I'm one proud mommy!

But seriously - 4 is great, I wish she could be 4 forever!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Pre-K and 2s!

Today is the first day of Pre-K for Reilly and Brooke moves into the 2's. For Reilly, she is with mostly the same group of kids as last year, and she already knows the teacher, so we are confident that the transition will be smooth. She is very much looking forward to being a "BIG KID."

Brooke is also lucky, she has 8 kids in her class, 4 of them are from the same class as last year, and one of her teachers is the same. Her drop-off wasn't painless, but she will be fine, for sure! The 2's were a big adjustment for Reilly, so we anticipate much of the same for Brooke. They move onto a different playground, more kids around, potty training, etc. It is a big year! - for both girls!

And, as is my tradition, I took a picture of them walking into school this morning. I was carrying 2 lunch boxes, 2 bedrolls and a backpack - so it isn't the best picture, but it will do :-)

And of course - another tradition of mine, is to take a look back ;-) So here are the previous year pictures.