Friday, February 28, 2014

2013: Final Goal Review

The year is over! Let's see how we did for 2013.

1. Make homemade bread in the oven:
So yummy! I've made this many times since. I love that it is so easy and so few ingredients. The recipe makes a ton, so I love to make it with a giant crock pot of soup and invite people over for dinner and games. (Anyone interested!?)

2. Chalkboard frame and drawings:
I really enjoyed this one!   I especially love collaborating with Lucy and look forward to more collaboration in 2014.
Here are the drawings we made for 2013:
"How to" found hereJanuaryFebruaryApril (before)April (after), June, October  

This is one I definitely want to continue with! I've had the family portrait from Peter's birthday up since October because I loved it so much. Lucy rubbed part of it off this past week, so I guess it is time to erase it and start a new drawing! 

3. Professional Massage:

Wonderful! We enjoyed a couples massage while we were in Iowa visiting family. Zach and I both enjoyed it and I think it might be our new anniversary tradition! The perfect gift to each other. 

4. Organize and downsize jewelry collection:
I did sell a few pieces in a garage sale before we moved.  I did have to reorganize my jewelry box after the move because everything inside got all tangled up. (Boo.) I took advantage of the opportunity by pulling out a few necklaces for Lucy to put in her jewelry box for playing dress up, and also pulled out anything I don't wear regularly. This included stuff from high school, heirloom pieces, etc. that just aren't my style right now. These pieces went into storage for later when Lucy and Clara are a bit older. 

5. Have fresh flowers in my home:
Yes! We started with planting some flowers and watching them grow in the windowsill. Lucy also loves picking weeds flowers from our yard and having me display them in a vase on the kitchen table. I also picked some of our roses to enjoy.

Now that we have moved into a new house I've been looking for a windowsill or safe place to have some new plants, but nothing has jumped out at me yet. I would really love to have some fresh herbs growing.

6. Make some hair clips for Lucy:
Done! See here and here

7. Fill another sketch book
Fail! Getting started really is the hardest part. 

8. Finish reading Daring to Be Yourself:
Not even close. Despite my best intentions, I just didn't pick a book that held my interest enough to finish by the end of the year. Someday?

9. Do a new art project with Lucy every month:
Good enough! When I made this goal I kind of forgot that I would be dealing with pregnancy and an additional child/newborn this year. With the assortment of art we did do, and twelve overall throughout the year, I think this is a win. It was fun to trying to think of new things to introduce her to, and fun trying new mediums together.

Something I've also been working on is not micromanaging her projects, and trying to just let her do her own thing. I find that it helps if we each have 
separate pieces to work on so that I can make my own. It frees me up to let her create on her own instead of making sure she does it "right". This also becomes easier as she gets older and can do more on her own. 

January: Scrap book
April: Welcome Chalkboard Drawing
May: Magic Color Markers from Trish
October: Peter's birthday Chalkboard, Stain glass painting

10.  Visit Alaska for Christmas:
Sadly, no. With the move, job situation, etc. we weren't able to make it to Alaska this year. On the up side, we did enjoy having Boyd and Andrew come visit for Christmas, and were able to visit with many other relatives this past year, including a last-minute trip to Iowa. See here, here, and here

So, there we have it! 7/10.  Not as good as last year, but hey, seven more than if I hadn't tried at all!

Now it's time to write up my list for 2014. So, people of the interwebs! What fun things would you like to do this year? Anything on your list of dreams? 

Any pins that you've been dying to try? Or maybe you did something fun last year that you think I should try? Please share in the comments below! I need inspiration! 

See here for a comprehensive list of past goals and surprise accomplishments. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Food, Food, Glorious Food!

Whenever Boyd comes to visit we can count on three things:

1. Lots of lounging around/relaxing while watching movies

2. Lots of game playing

3. Lots of good food!

It's time for cooking, baking, and eating!

Boyd's favorite: Apple Dumplings.

Shakshuka, or poached eggs in tomatoes and onion. Courtesy of Andrew.

So yummy! Serve with warm pita bread.

Roasted parsnips, new potatoes, sweet potatoes, and mushrooms with some pink Himalayan salt.

Roast lamb. Via Andrew.

Testing out the  cookbook we got Andrew for Christmas.

Gougère : Cheese puffs

Andrew treated us to crab legs!

Cheese party!

I'm drooling just looking at these pictures again. 

So yummy! These are actually served in hollowed out fruit! Find at a Costco near you. Perfect for a spa night. 

Boyd: the baby food whisperer

Homemade pizza with Great Harvest bread dough for crust. Yum!

Cinnamon rolls

Boyd and Andrew, come back soon! I'm hungry!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Race Track

The last night before Andrew and Boyd left town, Andrew wanted to go out and have one last hurrah. We went to a local track and raced go carts.

Boyd and Andrew went first racing against each other, and I raced last by myself to see if I could beat their times. I was glad that I had the track to myself so I didn't have to worry about slowing down to avoid hitting anyone else.

It was fun! But also a little stressful. Whenever I tried to really press the gas down the whole way, the entire go cart started shuddering. It kind of felt like I wasn't enough weight to keep the car down against the asphalt. So, I would have to ease up until it smoothed out.

I was also scared of hitting the sides because they made a big deal about how it wasn't bumper cars, and if you hit anyone (or anything) on purpose then you were done. I tried to go as fast as I could without losing control or bumping around. I didn't beat Andrew or Boyd's fastest times, but I did get progressively faster on each lap! So, I count that a win for me.

Ready to go!

Watching Boyd and Andrew race. 

Getting the low-down.

I'm so fast, I'm a blur!

It was a fun activity, and something that I would have never done on my own! It was definitely out of my normal comfort zone.

Lucy was pretty disappointed and sad when she realized that she wasn't going to get a turn. (Too short!) But, luckily for her Andrew bought her some Resse's Pieces to ease her pain.

To finish the night we went to Joe's Crab Shack for a yummy dinner.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014


Andrew surprised us with tickets to Sea World! Thankfully, we picked a day that was a lot warmer than the one we to to Six Flags on.

We loved all the shows and seeing the animals. Lucy loved the kiddie rides and exploring everything. It was so fun! Zach and I even went on a few rollercosters together while Boyd and Andrew watched the kids for us. I was so surprised how short the lines were! We only had to wait one turn before getting on.

Sweethearts for life.

Waiting for a show.

Zach and Lucy at the top of the net climb. In the summer this whole area has a water park feature to it.

Lucy loving meeting everyone.

Andrew bought a few bowls of fish to feed to the sea lions. 

They even found one squid in the bunch!

Had to recapture our last picture taken here.

Pregnant with Lucy: March 2010

Sea World was a lot of fun, and another place that seems like a year pass would be worth investing in. Maybe after our year pass for the Children's Museum expires we will get a family pass to one of these parks! I like how they both have water parks/features for the summer months.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Children's Museum: Boyd Edition

We met up with Boyd and Andrew downtown and visited the Children't Museum together.

Now that Clara is a little older she made good use out of the toddler explore area. 

Rocking her Christmas presents outfit!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Asian Festival February 2014

We went to the Asian Festival as a family activity and had fun looking at all the booths and exhibits. The highlight was watching all the different performers dance and highlight their cultures.

Zach and Lucy with all the different flags from around the world.

Zach and Lucy at one of the permanent exhibits: Texas History

Lucy watching a group of dancers representing India. 

I love going to things like this, but not as much when they charge an entrance fee as well as make you pay for everything else inside. I would definitely be interested in going again next year depending on what the entrance fee was.

Anyone else know of any fun family outings or events like this that we should look into? I'm always on the lookout!

New Year's Eve: In Holland

We were so lucky to be invited to an annual New Years Eve party that our new friends host every year. This year the country they chose for the theme was Holland.

In traditional Holland fashion, it was also a costume party! I pulled out our costume boxes and we whipped up these costumes for the entire crew.

Via the photo booth.
Chinese girl, Olympian, Frenchman, Prom Queen, Supergirl, & Mexican

Snowman contest: Boyd and Andrew

The winning team!

Boyd and Andrew were good sports, and had many fan club members by the end of the night. 

Nice hat/ears on this snowman.

A worthy adversary in the snowman contest.

"Midnight" balloon release! 

Hearing all about the traditions of Holland.

Pure joy to find the treats left behind in her shoe.

Trying to nurse an orange.

Lucy congratulating Clara, who won 2nd place in the kids costume contest. The Dragon won first.

The Adult costume contest participants. I won, and Boyd was runner up. 

Lucy's prize for participating in the costume contest. 

Finishing off the night right with fireworks! 

It was great to have a fun family activity to go to on New Years Eve.  I hope we get invited again next year!

What fun traditions do you do for New Years Eve? I'm always looking for new ideas!

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