Sunday, September 11, 2011

If you give a girl a flower...

...you get a set of really cute pictures!!





And for the sake of artsy fartsiness:


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Saturday, September 10, 2011

A trippy fact

At this time last year (2010), Jack was as old as Zoey is now.

We realized this fact last night. Kind of crazy when you think about it! One little odd fact about having kids born 23 months apart.

Want some proof?

Jack was 4 years old on September 10, 2010 and Zoey is 4 years old on September 10, 2011.

September 10, 2010
(We were at a football game waiting for Trav to join us. These shots were taken just before we were rained out!)



September 8, 2011
(Playing in the park on a gorgeous day!)



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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Summer rewind: Movies and more


It's no secret that this summer we saw a lot of movies.

And I mean, a LOT of movies.

Open houses + hot weather + tired kids = movies!

(Note: If you live near a Dickenson Theater and have a kiddo under the age of 4, know that your kiddo will get in for free. No joke!)

A review of the movies seen this summer:

5) Zoo Keeper: Sadly, Zoo Keeper was more entertaining for me but when it came to my kids, they were very bored by it. Unlike Mr. Popper's Penguins, Zoo Keeper focused too much on the drama and less on the animals. Zoey started to get antsy around the 20 minute mark. The story itself is pretty cut-and-dry, but I would say it's more marketed for the 8-12 age range. Jack understood what was going on, but even he had trouble with it.

4) Winnie the Pooh: This was the last movie to come out over the summer movie extravaganza for us, and unfortunately it just disappointed. We even went on opening day, and the theater was pretty much empty. My kids don't love Winnie the Pooh, but they know the characters and will watch it every once in a while. However, this movie just fell flat. From a kid's standpoint, it was pretty dull. There were some cute and funny moments, but both of my kids lost interest within the first 25 minutes. I feel like they spent more time on the old-school animation style and attracting those older audiences than they did actually entertaining kids.

3) Mr. Popper's Penguins: I hated this movie. There, I said it. It really just flat-lined for me. My kids, however, thought that it was just great. Why, do you ask? Because it stayed focused on the penguins. There was some back-story like Zoo Keeper, but the penguins were the stars of the show. Even though I do feel like it was once again aimed for the 8-12 crowd, both of my kids enjoyed it, even if it was just to see the penguins. Of all the movies we saw this summer, I would say that this one is smack-dab in the middle.

1) Rio: We loved Rio so much that we saw it three times this summer. Three times! My kids loved it, the music was so fun that we ended up downloading the soundtrack and quite honestly it was a fun waste of 90 minutes. It never gets too dark, too slow or too sentimental. The ending pretty much throws the storyline off a cliff, but for the most part it was a favorite. If you think that the best movie of the summer should be light and just...fun...then this was the top! This movie reminds me of the newest version of Hairspray - it's just a fun movie that will make your toes start tapping in the very first scene.

1) Cars 2: We waited for Cars 2 for months. Disney Pixar has a YouTube channel, and their creative marketing made it possible for us to get Jack (and Zoey, by default) super excited for the opening weekend. The kids have also seen this movie three times. For an animated movie, it's amazing - the graphics are top-notch and it really is one of the best. However, it's not the best Pixar has made. It just didn't have the script or momentum to take it to the next level. Of course, that's just me talking as an adult. Jack loved it, as did Zoey to a lesser extent. If you're basing the #1 movie of the summer off graphics and marketability, Cars 2 is the winner. 

So there you have it! Our guide to the kid movies of 2011. There were plenty we didn't see (Smurfs) and even more we can't wait to watch (Muppets, Happy Feet 2).


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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Preschool, Part B

Last year when Jack started his first (and only) year of preschool, I had to work - I was a newbie at work and couldn't just take off in the morning to see my boy off.

I still regret that.

ANYWAY, this year I've made up for it. I was there for Jack's first day of Kindergarten and I actually took a vacation day for Zoey's first day of preschool!

Zoey has been excited for this day to come for weeks:

She finally was able to put on her beloved Dora backpack (thanks Grandma Suzie!) and enter into the preschool world.

Her backpack was bigger than she was! Thankfully it's only the supplies needed for the first day of school!

"Ha - I look like a turtle."

There's my big girl - all ready to go! *tear*

Before preschool, the kids wait in the lobby for their teachers to come and take them back to the classroom.

Her teachers...

...and Ms. Christine!

Yeah, I'm excited too Zoey!

When it was time to go, she lined up and happily lugged her stuff to the classroom.

Now a few random pictures:
Story: It's a bad picture, but I was walking backwards and taking shots of Zoey walking with Papa Don and Travis. She thought it was hysterical, and I had to get a picture of it. It's blurry. It's off-center. But I love it!

There's my big preschooler - when did she start getting so big?

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Monday, September 5, 2011

A delicious dairy-filled date

Saturday started off just as any other day starts off for us:


The kids were sleeping hard after the baseball game the night before, but this morning was different.

Why?

Because we piled into the car to go to...

Shatto dairy! 

They have a farm in Missouri not too far from where we live, so opted to take the drive for a tour and introduce the kids to where their milk comes from. Grandma Suzie and Papa Don decided to come along too!

Now, the first thing we saw there wasn't officially on the tour, but it's a sign of country/farm life: 
 It's a barn kitty!
Zoey loves animals, so she loved on that cat for quite awhile!

Aww, there we go! 


Holstein girls! 

Now, the tour was pretty good. We were able to sample their milk, see how the milk was pasteurized, how the cows were milk and how they bottle the milk. 

But the best part of all, was in the cow barn.

As the owner said, "It smelled like cows because there are cows in here." Well, there was one very affectionate cow in there!

 She was great with the kids.

 Hi girl!

The guide showed us how to milk the cows...

And Jack was the first kid to just step up and try it out.

This picture is fuzzy, but it showed how excited he was!

Zoey even tried too!

Though she wasn't as successful!

Side note: Check this out!
That's right - a calf was born on my birthday and given my name. How cool is that?!

Do you remember that affectionate cow? We weren't kidding - look at what she did to Grandma Suzie! (And yes, I have her permission to post this on my blog!)

Jack thought it was hilarious 

We took some pictures...

While Trav and Papa Don paid for the milk, we took more pictures...

...We wanted to remember how much fun we had!

Thank you, Shatto dairy!

(Ta-da)!



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Sunday, September 4, 2011

Zoey's paaaar-tay

We've been planning Zoey's birthday since July (truthfully), and no where during that time did I ever imagine it would rain.

It could be 97 degrees or 70 degrees, but rain? Pssh.

Earlier that day we visited Shatto Dairy - rain-free might I add. It was around 97 degrees when we returned to KC, but it was NOT raining.

So when Trav left to run some last-minute errands and I was trying to get everything accomplished, the sound of thunder was NOT a welcomed sound.

Thankfully, only 15 minutes or so of thunder/lightening and a heavy rain shower made it so we had a party in crisp 75-ish degree weather. (There was "told ya so" moment of the day - very few believed it would stop raining!)

Take a look for yourself:














Note: I love this picture. It's just so random!








Now, Zoey's "thing" was making sure everyone had tattoos (Ariel-themed, of course):



Now, for the gift-opening. This is my disclaimer. Zoey tore through those gifts like there was no tomorrow. Needless to say, pictures were limited:




I just have to say - thank you to everyone who made this day possible!

She loved every minute of it, and I can't imagine a better way to celebrate her fourth year!


This was my attempt at a mermaid...only it was 'hurt" in the car-ride over. Drat.

Happy birthday, Zoey!

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