Friday, September 26, 2008

mandarin pixie

For as long as I've had my blog, I've had a link to my friend Jen's online rubber stamp store, Mandarin Pixie, over there on the right ------->

Now, sadly, Mandarin Pixie is going out of business. :( The last day will be Tuesday, September 30th, and everything that Jen has left is selling for either 50 cents or $1.00. She has some wonderful items there, so please check it out! You can either click on that link on the right, or this one: .


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

what a big boy!

This has been a big week for Benjamin! First, of course, he turned 3! He's not quite sure yet how this age thing works, though, because several times a day he will ask me, "Me still 3, Mama?" LOL! I tell him he'll be 3 for a long, long time (even though I know the year will go by in a flash for me!)

On Sept. 21st, I took a photo of him in his crib, since I knew he wouldn't be in it much longer. As you can see, he was only sleeping in half of the crib (with his feet sticking out!)... he had toys, books, etc. piled up in the other half!:

On Sept. 22nd, Ben attended his second day of ABC Playschool, which is just a little 40-minute class he has on Mondays. Last week did not go so well ~ he cried and cried when I dropped him off, then sat in the corner the rest of the time, not participating in anything. This week, however, went much better. There were no tears, and he even had "a little bit" of fun, according to him, LOL. They did some painting ~ here he is with his masterpiece!:
Yesterday, Sept. 23rd, I did a bunch of cleaning and rearranging in the boys' room. Here's how it looked before I moved things around. Looking south:
Looking northwest:
I spent a total of 5 hours rearranging and putting Ben's new big boy bed together. Here's how their room looks now. Looking southwest:
Looking north:
Looking northeast:
After all that, then I had to deal with Ben's naptime, and the novelty of a bed vs. a crib. (Benjamin only ever climbed out of his crib once. He fell and got an owie, and never tried again! LOL! I know I've had it easy with him in that area ~ both Em and Nick got out of their cribs constantly from the time they were 2 until they got beds at 2-1/2!)

Anyway, we had a big talk before naptime about what I expected from him, and I have to say that it was definitely the smoothest transistion to a bed of all 3 kids! He did get out of bed several times (I could hear little footsteps upstairs for half an hour or so), but he stayed in his room like I'd asked him to, and he did eventually fall asleep on his bed! (Note all the things he brought into bed with him, LOL!):

Bedtime at night went pretty well, too, especially considering how excited Ben was to be sleeping under Nick. He talked and talked and talked to his big brother, but only got out of bed once. And, after he fell asleep, he stayed in bed till he woke up this morning at 7:30! :)

Here's a picture from today. Ben loves his big boy bed!!:

Sunday, September 21, 2008

trains, gifts, and cake... oh, my!

For Ben's 3rd birthday, we took him to the Illinois Railway Museum in Union, IL. He had never been there before ~ in fact, the last time we were there, Emmalie was only 15 months old! He was so excited about the many, many trains there!

First we rode on this beautifully restored electric train:
As much as he loved all the trains, Ben did NOT like the loud train whistles when they pulled into the station!:
Here is one of the street cars we saw. (We rode on a different one, and also on an electric bus.):
We visited a few of the train barns, as well. Ben thought it was great fun to run up and down these ramps: We got to climb onto a couple of trains:
And even play with little trains: We also rode on this cool Pullman car, pulled by a diesel engine:

It was a fun day, even for those of us (Em, Nick, and me) who aren't huge train enthusiasts....

In the evening we had a little family party for our birthday boy. He was thrilled by the pile of presents waiting for him: A new game!:
His very own bowling set!: Race cars and Hot Wheels tracks:
And we also gave him a big boy bed that is still in the box. Hopefully we will get it put together this week, and of course, I will take pictures.

Then we sang to Ben and had a little cake and ice cream:

It was finger-lickin' good! :)

I still can't believe he's 3 already....

Saturday, September 20, 2008

happy birfinday, benjamin!

That's what he calls it, his birfinday. :) I can't believe he's 3 already! (Where did the time go?)

Here is how he looked three short years ago: and here he is today, very excited that it is his special day!:Love you, buddy!!

Friday, September 19, 2008

a slice of september

Pictures from the past week...

Sept. 12th, Spirit Day at Em's school. Though her school colors are purple and white, her class is divided into teams, and each of them have their own colors. Em is in the House of Gladiators (colors red and black, obviously), and she wrote, "Go Gladiators!" on her arm:
Sept. 13th, after raining and raining and raining for 2 days straight, part of our town flooded from clogged storm sewers. This photo was taken about 6 blocks from our house ~ luckily, OUR street didn't look like this!: Sept. 14th, Benjamin is my little helper. He LOVES to put the silverware away!:
Sept. 15th, my scrap table was all cleaned up, and I was ready to start the month long online crop at Scrapbook Friends!:
Sept. 16th, more of our sedum in bloom:
Sept. 17th, I call this one "Mexican Gothic", LOL! I took this for a photo scavenger hunt that is part of the crop at Scrapbook Friends. Three of the things we needed to photograph ourselves with were a rake, a poncho, and my friends Kim & Katie!:
Sept. 18th, Ben spent about 15 minutes jumping off this stair step over and over again!: Sept. 19th, Ben shows off his pretty nails that big sister painted for him!:

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

yearbook yourself

Thank you to my friend Judy, who told me about this site: Emmalie and I had so much fun playing around with it the other day! Here are some of the funnier pictures that we ended up with:
Here's me...

in 1952: in 1966:
in 1968:
in 1980 (I remember Christine used to have a hairdo like this!):
in 1984:
and in 1986 (both Em and I think this one looks a lot like Mom! Scary! LOL):
Here's Emmalie...

in 1954 (for this one we used a picture of Em with a fake jewel stuck to her forehead):

in 1966:
and in 1978:
We had to do a few of George, too! LOL! (We tried using Nick and Ben's pictures, but they just didn't work too well... partly because they have bangs.)

Here's George in 1956 (this reminds me of his dad, Harold!):
and here is our all-time favorite... George in 1976: What a riot!!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

september days

September 1st, Mama wouldn't let Ben do something he wanted to ~ this is his sad look, LOL: September 2nd, I finally made myself go back to the gym:
September 3rd, another orange zinnia:
September 4th, one of Nick's art projects from school:
September 5th, I headed to Aledo, IL for another wonderful scrapbooking retreat at The Slammer! We were all given these bags FILLED with goodies from the other scrappers there:
September 6th, I had such a good time hanging out with my friends, scrapping and laughing!! Here are Tammy and Mandi, eating dinner in one of the cells:
Laura and Jeanne: Down in the crop room, Jeanne was making some digital sketches:
Laura was working on a layout:
Tammy was opening one of the awesome gifts that Mandi gave each of us: and Dawn was scrapping:Later that evening, there was an 80's party, and several of us dressed up for the costume contest. Here is Tammy (or is it Cindy Lauper?): and here is Boy me:
September 7th, after staying up way too late the night before, Mandi and Tammy tried massaging their heads with some leftover jars, LOL:
September 8th, one of our sunflowers FINALLY bloomed:
September 9th, the awesome prize that I won at the Slammer... Lots O' Letters!:
September 10th, Em was sitting in the kitchen before school (where she could watch the clock to know when to head to the bus stop), and Ben decided to use her legs to rest on. He thought it was quite hilarious! (Even though I wasn't quick enough to get a shot of him laughing.):
September 11th, today Ben and I had a "playdate" with our friends David and Karen. Ben was SO excited before they arrived, but then didn't want to share his toys with David once they got here, LOL. We ended up going to Burger King for lunch. We ate and then the boys had a blast in the Play Place there. I didn't have my camera with me, but did get a few shots when we returned back home. Karen and David left soon after Nick got back from school. Here is Nick with David:
Ben gives David a hug: Tete-a-tete: