Saturday, November 29, 2008

'Tis the season...

Yesterday, the boys went to the Thanksgiving parade downtown before we enjoyed a lovely meal at home (I can say it was lovely even if I cooked it, right?) Then we made our quasi-annual trip to the Uptown Lighting ceremony and fireworks near the Galleria.

The boys got some nifty new toys to make their own lightshows:

Juliette watched the fireworks with Grandma Denise and welcomed the official opening of the Christmas season...
Then we enjoyed a leisurely afternoon at the park the day after Thanksgiving. No shopping for us, thank you very much. Juliette knew it must be fall still because she found a leaf on the ground.
The boys knew it was almost Christmas because they opened the outdoor ice skating rink at Discovery Green. However, they opted for other diversions...

Yeah, 85°F on the day after Thanksgiving...welcome to Christmas season in Texas...let's put on our bathing suits and play in the fountains at the park.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

One to check off the list...

I don't have the ingredients for our Thanksgiving dinner, but I did manage to get the kids to the mall for the annual Santa picture. Here they were in the car on the way to the mall.

Juliette didn't know what she was getting into...
Hayden scowled at me, until I told him Santa doesn't bring presents to boys who make mean faces at their mother.
Trevor was a little pumped up this year. A nice change from the frightened screaming of yesteryear.
How adorable are these two?
Hayden loves Santa.
Here was the shot from the mall people:
And this was mine.
All in all, not a bad Santa visit. Not a cryer in the bunch.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Forgot to mention...
Someone turned 11 months old today. Ooh la la!

For Anna, who wanted to see the whole outfit...

And expressed a special interest in these cute shoes...


Got a letter today from a collections agency. They're after me for some overdue library books. I got the notice a while ago but didn't want to pay since they said they'd reverse the charge on the books if I returned the books. And I kept meaning to return the books but didn't get around to it.

How wrong is it that I ruin a near-perfect credit rating by hijacking three books on bed-wetting? I mean, if you're going to go down in flames, shouldn't it at least be over something more fun?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The itch...

I'm starting to get the itch to buy a new camera. My shutter has been acting a little sketchy and I don't have a back-up camera. And the new Nikon D700 has some nifty features that could bring some real improvements to my shooting.

BUT...the old camera is still working...and I'd need a pricey new lens to go with the new camera (my #1 lens isn't fully compatible with the D700...and I'd have to book, I don't know, 30 shoots, to pay for the camera and lens.

So I can't really justify the new camera completely. And these things tend to get cheaper/more sophisticated the longer you wait. So maybe I should wait.

But I really really want it NOW.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Perhaps a bad sign...

When the dog gets haircuts more frequently than I do. I'm the shaggiest one in the house.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Skinny jeans...

When I see those two words together, I think on those one-size too small jeans we all have in our closet, waiting for the day that 15 lbs miraculously disappears from our waist/bum/hips/thighs. But don't set foot in the Gap, new land of "skinny jeans" which apparently means the early 80s fitting jeans that are skin tight from waist to ankle. Now I must ask, is that a good look for anyone? I mean even if you're 5'10" and 110 lbs I think skinny jeans look ridiculous. Of course, the fact that I'm shorter and heavier than those dimensions may influence my thinking. But seriously, were they watching when Stacy and Clinton passed out the rules on "What not to Wear"?

In other news, I got sick on Saturday night and had to cancel 2 photo shoots for Sunday. Which means I'll have 5 shoots the following weekend which really exceeds my ability to process in a timely manner. So you may not be hearing from me for while since I'll be in solitary confinement with my BFF Photoshop for a while.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Stylist, please?

I've been taking pictures of one family after the next for the upcoming holidays. And every family I meet shows up looking effortlessly lovely. Which never ceases to amaze me since outfitting the family for holiday pics is the bane of my existing. Every year it takes me longer and longer (perhaps due to the continued expansion of the clan).

This year I decided we're going with a more relaxed look so we're going to wear jeans. Which means I only need to buy tops. That's a no brainer, right? Not so much. Trying to look coordinated but not outright matchy-matchy is beyond my abilities, apparently. I spent two hours looking for a top for myself to end up with one purchase that still doesn't inspire me. I still don't have a decent pair of jeans, but I've got a Gap coupon so I'm optimistic.

I've been looking online for Juliette because I can't find anything in the store that's a dark color, not too dressy, and no wild patterns. I found something online but can't stomach paying $100 for an outfit that will be unlikely to fit in two months. I did find a dress I kind of liked online for $50. Then I found the same dress in a store for $110 but it was super cute when I tried it on her. So I spent 1.5 hours online trying to find it for $50 again. No luck.

I took all 3 kids to the mall today to try to find outfits for the boys. The only things that kept me from killing them were 1)threats of telling the mall Santa about their misbehavior (why is Santa there before Thanksgiving?) 2) the TVs in 2 of the stores we visited and 3) the promise of cookies. So I got a few options for them which is progress. Another 5 hours of frustrated shopping and I might wrap this year's shopping up. Which is ridiculous. Who spends this long to look so "effortlessly casual"? Nobody.

So if you wonder why I didn't send that perfect baby/birthday/Christmas gift...this is why. I can't shop. Get paralyzed by the decision-making. No inspiration. Looking around at the vast mountains of choices just makes me dizzy.

But with any luck, I might get it together enough to get the family pic done, put together a card, and send it to you. If I work on it every waking hour between now and Dec 25th.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Normally, I take Hayden to school at around 7:25 and wait outside with him till the first bell rings at 7:35 am. This will usually get me to my office right around 8 am. But they offer breakfast in the cafeteria at school and once in a blue moon, if I need to be at work before 8, I drop him in the cafeteria at 7:10 am. So this week he announces that he'd rather just have me drop him at the curb so he can eat breakfast at school every day.

Sniff. Sniff. Big boy. So it's more convenient for me certainly, but am I a bad mom for it? Is the free breakfast at school just for the kids who can't get a decent breakfast at home? Should I be spending quality time with my kid over a nutritious breakfast at home? Or if he'd rather be in the cafeteria and I could benefit from getting to work earlier, is it a win-win?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Almost missed it...

Miss J. Has been doing the combat crawl for 2+ months now. She's continued to slither around on her belly like a snake despite moving onto other physical milestones like getting herself into a sitting position, getting up on her knees, and pulling up to stand. For some reason, I dusted off the video camera late last week to capture her sweet slithering crawl.

And what do you know, I came home yesterday and found her crawling on her hands and knees like a big girl.

We have probably 2 hours of video of Hayden attempting to crawl, pull up, etc. At least we won't have to do as much editing on Juliette's early years. Although the soundtrack could use some work, mostly the dogs barking and the boys fighting. Such is life in our house.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

I came home and something was missing...

Sean and I went out to a play on Saturday night and my mother watched the kids. We apparently missed a big event in our house. What's missing from this picture?
Who needs to move in for a closer look?
Please note, this was not due to an all-night Halloween candy-eating binge. A few weeks ago, Hayden took a shot to the mouth in a soccer game. There was a little blood and the tooth has been getting gradually looser since then. He could not have been more excited about having that tooth come out...I think it was the tooth fairy that made him so pumped up.
By the way, the tooth fairy has upped the ante these days. I used to get a quarter growing up. Hayden's mouth is going to cost the tooth fairy $100 before we're all said and done.

Get out and vote today!

I'm standing in line waiting to vote and I'm more excited than I thought I'd be. I already got choked up this morning talking to Hayden in the car about how we'll read in the newspaper tomorrow who our new president is. And now I'm feeling so energized and the anticipation really has me quite emotional. So get out there and vote and share the energy.