Thursday, February 27, 2014

A Very "Valentine" Playgroup

What do you do when the shortest month of the year seems like the longest? Well you get crazy with all things Valentine to help pass the time!

As I mentioned before, Adelaide & I spent some time crafting as well as cooking & baking all sorts of fun cupid-like treats this month. Ryan & I have spent much of the month celebrating Valentine's day and my birthday. So as we enter the home stretch of February, I thought it only fitting to close it out with a festive Tuesday playgroup...Valentine themed of course!

No playgroup is complete without yummy treats. Our kiddos love to eat and us moms love to make new & fun treats. I made my first batch of rice krispy treats with a touch of Valentine's (heart shaped and dipped in pink white chocolate!). I also whipped up some strawberry fudge which is super simple and only needs 2 ingredients. A little Cupid trail mix comprised of golden grahams (vanilla cupcake), mini marshmallows, & Valentine M&Ms. Plus red velvet mini milkshakes, heart bacon & eggs, and fruit kabobs to fill our tummies!

Adelaide loved making Valentine's for all of her friends...I Need S'more Friends Like You! And they each got a cute little festive plate to eat their s'mores on :)

Our playgroup has the sweetest kids this side of the Hudson and they truly love each other. Their little eyes light up each week and hugs & squeals are had by all. The moms are amazing and bring so much life & love to the table. It truly has been a weekly blessing for Adelaide & I to spend time with everyone!

PS- You might notice the WAY better quality in these pics than the past few weeks...yep I got my fancy camera back from repair and couldn't be happier about it!!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Circus Life: Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Legends

Last Friday, Whitney & I took the girls to see the circus. The circus of all circuses that is. The Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. We ventured into Brooklyn to the Barclays Center for a girls only afternoon.

Caileigh, I knew, would sit right through it in amazement. As for Adelaide, I was a little iffy on if I thought she could do it. She just doesn't do sitting. But with 8th row seats, I believed she would be able to see the animals and register what was happening. I was right.

This girl bounced and bounced to every song they sang, to the lights & fire, to the dancing, and to the animals of all sorts. She was in 7th heaven and so was I. Just watching her excitement and simple joy solidified that I had made the best decision.

Now there were a few minor mishaps because after all we were at the circus and LIFE is a CIRCUS ;) Little miss was bouncing all about so much that her diaper slid off her butt cheek causing her to pee right on my leg. No worries I was wearing my UK blue jeans. During intermission we grabbed a pretzel & hot dog for snack. She may have put me into a full blown sweat as she pulled my hair (there is a first for everything right?) and slapped my face. And as we were leaving I may have dropped my cell phone and only noticed later when I was in the bathroom (which didn't lock and my child kept trying to bust out while I was mid pee). So I returned to our seats on the hunt for my iPhone to find it gone and Adelaide cruising the aisles with a used banana peel in her hand. Sick. Gag me. Tears. The phone was turned in to lost and found which was a God-send. And Adelaide did kick off her brand new Uggs but those were recovered too. Oh my circus life ;)

Nonetheless, we had an absolute blast making memories with our friends & girls. We love the circus and all the shenanigans that come with it!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

31: Age Ain't Nothin' But A Number

Or so they say...but I do believe it. Example: I met the sweetest little old lady a few weeks ago at the nail salon. We were both drying our nails and struck up a convo. I would have guessed she was in her late 60s. Try 85 with a good 15 years or more of life to live. She was cute as a button and had driven out in the snow storm because she had cabin fever. Life is what we make it and we only feel as old as our minds & bodies make us feel.

Fast forward to this past Tuesday when I turned 31. It sounds different. Not in my 20s but now on the "other side" of 30. Truth be told, this February I have been concentrating on so many Valentine's activities & plans plus the Superbowl and the Winter Olympics that I sort of forgot about my bday for a bit. Or at least the hype of it all. Maybe because last year was such a BIG birthday you know turning 30 and all. Maybe because my life is all about doing for Adelaide, baby #2, & Ryan that I just haven't thought about it. Or maybe because after all these years I have finally decided to let my birthday be a passing flutter...ha who am I kidding it definitely isn't option number 3 ;) I believe birthdays are a big deal and each one should be celebrated in a special way because you are not promised another.

Nonetheless, I felt the love and surprises planned for my birthday celebration this year even more probably because I wasn't concentrated on them. Ryan planned a wonderful weekend with a family day Saturday of shopping & bonding time followed by a surprise dinner with our amazing friends the Kennedys at Truck. We topped off the day with glorious cheesecake and conversation at their house.

Sunday we headed out to Robibero Winery where we celebrated our first anniversary to enjoy wine tasting & dessert pairing. You can imagine how much dessert I in for two very hungry people ;)

My actual birthday was spent being active with prenatal yoga and a great tennis game. Then I watched all of Adelaide's sweet friends & her play at our weekly playgroup. I love seeing her interact with her friends and seeing them grow daily.

girls being girls ;)

yummy spread!

cheesin' with the shades

birthday roses from Mom & Dad

The next day I treated myself to a facial and a walk around the mall. Yes I love browsing the mall. By myself. In no rush. With a Starbucks in hand. Looking for nothing in particular. Followed by dinner with some of my mom friends at The Ocean House.

I feel so blessed to have such wonderful people here in New York to have shared & celebrated another year of life with and for having a husband who knows how to spoil me ;)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

American Hustle: A Movie Review

Ryan's anniversary gift to me was to make more effort in planning dates for us in 2014 instead of having me always take the lead. So we had our "retro high school date" back in December which included dinner at Steak n Shake (fancy!) and a movie. This month we did a more "adult" version with dinner at an actual restaurant and an R-rated movie. Get your minds out of the gutter...we saw American Hustle.

Featuring an all-star cast and set in the late 70's, this American story-telling film is one of laughs & thrills the whole way through. Irving (Christian Bale) is an under-the-radar conman who's sidekick Sydney (Amy Adams) helps lure their banking victims. Life is looking good until Richie DiMaso (Bradley Cooper) busts their operation. Offering them a deal to help take down a mob of people, Irving & Sydney come on board, but things get twisted when Richie starts to enjoy life in the fast lane & falls for Sydney.

A look back into life in the 70's and all that the times had to offer is enough to get you giggling. Throw in the comical side of these great actors & actresses and American Hustle is a slam dunk!

I highly recommend checking it out if you get the chance!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Music Mondays: You're Gonna Miss This

I literally felt like on Friday, Valentine's Day, I was living the 3rd verse of this song. The plumber arrived at our house around 5pm. The dog, Beaumont, was barking up a storm. Adelaide was running around in her little red apron screaming and/or crying depending on the moment. My kitchen looked like a baking bomb had exploded. And I looked about as disheveled as a girl can look. But all I could hear in my head was the lyrics to "You're Gonna Miss This" allowing me to laugh & smile at it all.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Sochi 2014: Little People Style

Getting into the Olympic spirit and shielding of the winter blues, we invited our friends Whitney, Tommy, & Caileigh over Sunday evening for some Russian cuisine and Olympic games. 

Inspired by the Today Show while working out on Friday, I whipped up beef stroganoff as well as lemon raspberry meringue tarts. Complete with a very-American colored table setting for TEAM USA of course.

Red, white, & blue

And mini torches for the kiddos

A few decorations set up the Olympic Village where athletes competed and medaled. There was mini ice skating and winter sport coloring. 

Olympic Village

Caileigh Jane coloring hard

Go For Gold

Medal ceremony

Best Olympians ever


Adelaide Jane coloring the bob-sled pages

Mini ice skating is intense competition


Our Olympic athletes were about as cute as they come!