i know i am not alone in feeling like this, but wow, the warmer weather and chance to be outside have definitely improved the "smileage" around our house. everything just feels fresh and new and exciting...less stir-craziness...less whining...less boredom/blahdom for mommy and the girls! for my own ease (because that is how my photos uploaded), i'm going to share smiles in reverse order, starting with our fabulous trip to the zoo today!
1. we were supposed to have a play-date at a friends house this morning, but since the weather was forecasted to be completely FABULOUS (like 70's!), we switched up the plan and invited them to join us at the zoo! it was a blast. we saw more animals moving around and playing than i've ever seen...including a tiger up close and personal who was playing with (ie. tearing to shreds) a cardboard box, the new baby cubs swimming and playing together, the lemurs at feeding time, and, of course SO many others!
the zoo's newest members...baby bear cubs...i could have watched play ALL day!
elizabeth and riley
kate...who kind of took the whole experience in but was quite into staying in the stroller as opposed to getting up close and personal with the animals (which actually surprised me...since she is usually our go-getter!)
friends...taking a stroll through the butterfly garden
2. drumroll, please...okay, friends, this is a milestone (granted...a late one). elizabeth finally had her first hair-cut last night (at 3 1/2 years old). i'll be honest, i've been itching to even it up a bit for quite some time, but i just couldn't bring myself to schedule an appointment, but with the warmer weather yesterday we were fighting a continuous battle of the crazy, straggly, fly aways...and i finally broke down. after bath time i combed it out nicely and did the cutting myself (after some instructions from a friend who cuts hair for a living). i LOVE the way it turned out (and am thankful for the curl since it hides any imperfections or uneven cutting). the best thing...this morning when she woke up we were able to run a comb through it without snags or snarls and without needing to douse her head in detangler! :)
before (earlier in the afternoon)--i'll have to find a good back of the head before picture since i really only cut the back
after-from the back
after-from the side
3. a delicioso ham, pineapple, and provolone stromboli....i posted about this newfound favorite creation a couple weeks back, but this time i took pictures...just wish you could smell it through the computer. i will be posting the recipe on good stuff maynard after i finish my smiles...so check there if you think it looks tasty!
4. spending hours and hours out in the backyard yesterday!
5. our fearless little kater-bug. she has mastered the art of climbing up the steps and going down the slide...something her sister didn't dare attempt at this age. it is so fun to see the differences between the two girls...elizabeth was much more verbal but for more timid when it came to climbing, etc....kate on the other hand care little about talking (she has words but just doesn't use them often) but is CONSTANTLY on the go and busy with gross and fine motor skills.
6. and really...who can resist a cheerful, bursting at the seams with laughter, precious little spunky girl who wakes up from a LONG afternoon nap in such a fabulous mood. this mama most certainly can't! and perhaps three pictures is overkill...but i simply couldn't decide which of the group was my fav! :)
7. that blissful, magical time of day when the garage door opens and daddy steps in the door (or onto the back-porch as it happened yesterday). but seriously, i wish you could see the little happy dance kate does the second she hears the creaking of the garage door...or see the way two little girls sit at their table and peer out the window, anxiously anticipating the sight of daddy's silver car. kate is ALWAYS the first to greet daddy...standing right at the door and leaping into his arms the second he arrives...but mommy and libs follow closely! (and mugho too, of course!).
***you can tell just how much we are loving the sunshine since the first 7 smiles encompass just the past 36 hours...incidentally, the warmest, brightest, most fabulous weather we've had since early autumn!***
8. a refreshing "fresh encounter" prayer service at church on sunday evening...and stopping for a family dinner at qdoba beforehand.
9. enjoying a surprise party, birthday celebration for a friend...and excited about the fact that this particular family has moved less than 10 minutes from us! hooray! :)
10. family play-time! on this particular evening we were all feeling a bit stir-crazy, so mommy busted out the box of my old barbies grandmommy and poppy had passed along at some point. elizabeth was enthralled...and i was taken down memory lane! :) i did teach elizabeth a trick from when aunt shell and i were little girls without an official barbie car...our barbie's traveled in true style...SHOES! boots for minivans or SUVs, sandals for convertibles...on this evening barbie took a trip in a nice brown sedan...of the sketchers variety! it must have been sunny, as elizabeth insisted barbie wear her sunglasses! :) perhaps when she gets a little older i can teach her how one survives without a barbie house....by turning her entire room into a gigantic barbie mansion. shell, if you are reading, tell me you remember this! :)
11. a lovely play-date at a wonderful indoor playground at a nearby church...friends, food, and lots of equipment for the girls to expend some energy on! :)
12. just have to share a pregger update. i can hardly believe how much more pregnant i am feeling and looking at this point than the past two (i guess by three your body just knows what to do!). i finally gave in and started wearing maternity clothes the other day...mostly for comfort-sake probably...and because i scored some new-to-me clothes from a friend, but seriously, i don't remember my body changing so much so early in previous pregnancies. and i'm not complaining...right now i am savoring each moment, eager to start feeling the regular movements of this little one. a couple times this week i've felt that delightful fluttering of the babe...and oh my, i just can't get enough! :)
13. finally, i am quite excited about a last minute trip to visit my parents at the end of the week...the girls and i are headed up to help celebrate my mom's birthday and to just plain spend some quality time hanging with grandmommy and poppy...and as a bonus we get to see our dear friend jill, or, miss jill, as elizabeth calls her!