Thursday, March 27, 2014

March Wrap-Up

I've been all over the place this month, and not in a good way. The combination of Daylight Savings Time, spring break, an out-of-town guest, and Will and Hallie's four, often-overlapping activities has left me a bit frazzled. The month was a good one - and here are a few pics without a theme or post of their own to prove it - but I'm looking forward to starting over in April!
Hallie left these for me on our mailbox.
"Mama? Can you help me?" Will called from Hallie's room.
"I'm stuck." And he was - I had to pull the bed out for him to escape.
Getting ready for a princess birthday party.
Practicing her archery skills before the party.
This picture makes me cringe…when did he get
old enough to start learning how to use knives?!
When I took my boots off to walk on the mat at Tae Kwon
Do graduation I was surprised to see these festive socks
on my feet. I think the other parents enjoyed them.
Using a Pez as a substitute tooth.
Kindly pushing his sister on the swing.
It lasted for less than two minutes.
Dinner with Grandma Brenda on her birthday.
Hallie lent Grandma her Hello Kitty birthday badge.
Showing off her snap bracelet watch from Aunt Sara.
Every. Single. Night.

See ya later, March - I'm ready for April!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Preschool Cowboy Day: The Final Edition

Throughout our three-and-a-half years in College Station, Cowboy Day has been one of the highlights of Will and Hallie's preschool years. Taking place each March (scheduled as closely to Texas Independence Day as possible), Cowboy Day gives the kids an opportunity to dress up in their finest cowboy/girl attire and try their hands at preschool-ized versions of farm and ranch activities.

In less than two months our family will close the door on the preschool years, which made this - our last preschool Cowboy Day - a day to remember. (Check out Cowboy Day 2012 here, and Cowboy Day 2013 here. I don't seem to have pictures from Cowboy Day 2011.)

Here's my gal Hal in all her cowgirl glory!
Trying out a real saddle (and lassoing). 
Riding the rocking horses (which have been her favorite part
of Cowboy Day since she first started preschool three years ago).
Lassoing the horse with a hula hoop.
Fishing in the stream.
Tossing snakes in the boots. 
Roasting marshmallows over the (fake) fire.
I think Hallie will have one more opportunity to dress up in her cowgirl attire for school as a kindergartener, but I know that by first grade the teachers and students are all business and no longer celebrate Cowboy Day. Enjoy it while you can, kiddo!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

A Visit to the Rain Forest

Hallie's preschool class has been studying the rain forest during the month of March, and last week the unit culminated with a rain forest hunt. Hallie and her classmates decided to wear camouflage on their hunt, which proved challenging for Hallie since she doesn't like to wear dark green and/or brown. We finally settled on a shirt of Will's with binoculars on it (perfect for hunting in the rain forest) and a blue and purple camouflage bandana on her head. She looked like she belonged in Fiddler on the Roof much more so than she looked like she belonged in a rain forest.

The school gave everyone a rain forest hunt hat, which greatly improved Hallie's hunting look.

After school we hung the majority of her rain forest art on and around the trees in her bedroom so that it looked "just like a real rain forest". If rain forests were home to trees with bright green and blue trunks and pretty little pink and yellow flowers decorating their branches...

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Harlem Globetrotters

Back in February (time gets away from me so quickly these days), the four of us spent the evening watching the Harlem Globetrotters take on the All-Stars. The All-Stars of what, you ask? I have no answer to that question, but my best guess is that they're the All-Stars of college basketball players who didn't make it in the NBA and are willing to embarrass themselves at the hands of and lose every night to the Harlem Globetrotters.

We actually bought out tickets to see the Globetrotters because of the pre-game entertainment; the demonstration team from Will's Tae Kwon Do gym performed before the Globetrotters took the court. Even though their performance lasted only a couple of minutes, the demo team did a fantastic job and Will really enjoyed watching the older students show off their skills. There's a good chance that Will could join both the leadership and demo teams if his interest in Tae Kwon Do persists (he's that good), so this was a great opportunity for him to see one of the teams in action.

Will and Tom in particular loved the Globetrotters slapstick humor. I enjoyed their performance as well, but Hallie…oh, Hallie…she sat on the floor in front of our seats and whined to go home for the majority of the game.

I'm not sure I'd pay to see the Globetrotters again, at least not with Hallie in tow or until a few years have passed to allow her to mature as a spectator. Unless of course Will joins the demo team and has the opportunity to perform in Reed Arena as the pre-game entertainment...

Congratulations, Globetrotters, on your completely unexpected victory over the All-Stars!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Mama-Son Date Night

While Tom and Hallie attended the Daddy Daughter Dance, Will and I went out on a Mama Son date night. Our original plan was to play a round of indoor, black-light miniature golf and then go see The Lego Movie, but because the weather that night was awful (which makes traffic here doubly awful) and we got a later start than we would have liked, we decided to replace miniature golf with arcade games at the movie theater before seeing the movie.

That evening may have been the first time I'd ever given Will the freedom to play whichever arcade games he wanted, for as long as he wanted. I kept the quarters coming, and he couldn't believe his luck. Until he tried Pac-Man, that is…he quickly discovered that Pac-Man wasn't his game, and that his mama - like most people who grew up in the 1980's - rocked at Pac-Man. It was a tough pill to swallow.

I love spending time with Will and Hallie individually. To listen to each of them talk about their likes and dislikes without the other interrupting. To hold just one hand as we walk stroll down the sidewalk. To give my undivided attention to just one smiling face.

I know Will won't always enjoy outings with his mom as much as he does now, but I feel hopeful that as long as I keep the quarters coming, he'll let me hang out with him in the arcade watch him play arcade games at the movie theater.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Daddy Daughter Dance

Back in February, Tom took Hallie to our local children's museum's annual Daddy Daughter Dance fundraiser. Her excitement in the days leading up to the event reached levels seen previously only on birthdays and Christmas mornings, and once it was time for "hair and make-up" she nearly exploded.

At the dance, Tom and Hallie made flower corsages out of felt; colored children's museum tee-shirts; made Valentine's Day cards for moms; dined on chicken nuggets, french fries, and cupcakes; and DANCED.
The newspaper photographer on hand must have really enjoyed Tom and Hallie's dancing (anyone who's ever attended a wedding with our family knows that these two aren't exactly shy on the dance floor), because the following morning they graced the cover of the newspaper's regional section.

Is it weird that I want to whisper in Hallie's ear, "point your toes!"? Perhaps I've been watching a few too many dance classes.

A month later, Hallie still talks about her date with Daddy to the Daddy Daughter Dance as one of the best nights of her life. I hope she always feels that way about spending time with her daddy.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Hearts With Feelings

Turns out Hallie owns seven dresses (and one leotard) with hearts on them. Such a collection made it difficult for her to determine what to wear, but she eventually decided on the red dress - dressed up with her new necklace - for Valentine's Day and four of the other dresses for the weekdays (and the leotard for dance) leading up to the holiday.

Sadly, two of Hallie's heart dresses never even made it out of the closet the week of Valentine's Day. She promised those dresses she'd wear them soon, though - she assured them she didn't want their feelings to be hurt.

It might be time for us to start buying dresses with stripes or polka dots or flowers on them…and to stop treating our dresses as if they have feelings.