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Sunday, July 8, 2012

Father's Day 2012

If there's one thing Mark is good at, it's being a Daddy.
He does a great job at making the kids feel special.
He does a great job of letting them do special things that I don't.

I planned Mark's gift months in advance.
We got him a TWINS jersey that (eventually) will be signed by Joe Mauer.
We gave it to him a week in advance when he went to the game with his dad and brothers.

The kids were so excited to celebrate the fabulous Daddy.

Upon Mark's request, we headed out to Taylor's Falls.
We had a nice greasy lunch but then it began to drizzle.
Since I'm nervous about taking the kids to Taylor's Falls anyway,
I insisted it couldn't be raining. 

 The radar said it was going to blow over so we did a little mini golfing.
The kids were in heaven.

They are the perfect ago for mini golf.
They were quite serious and they were quite competitive 
since I was 'keeping score.'

This is the first of the two holes in one Victoria got.
Look how proud she is!
That almost makes up for the hole she got a 15 on.

It started raining so hard we had to get umbrellas from the car.
The mosquitoes were so think I could actually feel my ankles swelling.
But, we were having a fabulous time. :-)

Second hole in one.

Between the rain, the mosquitoes and the wait behind the slowest adult mini golf players of all time
we ditched the 18th hole.

We decided to head home only to have it finally clear up.
We stopped by the very unusual outdoor art museum.

When we got home Mark made an elaborate steak and humungous shrimp dinner.
It wasn't my idea of an ideal day, but he says he loved it.
Since we love him, it was perfectly, perfect.

Tea for Six

Victoria turned six on April 14th.
On April 21st, we hosted her birthday party
Tea for Six.

Six little girls all (about) six years old.

I told Mark my vision and he created this sign.
Very impressive.

We used her very nice tea set she received from Mama Jeanne last Christmas.

We borrowed doilies that Mark's grandma made.

For the party favors I put candy in little tea cups.

It was a girls only party so Christian and Mark hung out for a few hours.
But not before Aunt Molly arrived.

Jenna gave Victoria her gift early so we could use it for the party.
Doesn't every little girl need her own juice fountain?

I found the perfect tea party dress a couple months before the party.
Finding the gloves was a bit trickier.

Mark's cousin Courtni came to do each of the girls hair, including mine.
They all felt special getting all dolled up while wearing their best dresses.

Lunch was finger sandwiches and fruit.
The meal was completely silent.
Each little girl was using their very best manners and took the tea party
very seriously.

The moms all dressed the part too.

Odelis was in charge of make up.

My Little Angel

She looks absolutely flawless to me.

She received many thoughtful and generous gifts.

She enjoyed several types of real tea.

Rosie and Mommy looking adorable.

Tea for Six Guests

Odelis gave Victoria a Mystery Machine that has real 
Mystery Goo.
She played with it before the last guest had pulled out of the driveway.

Aunt Molly gave her real turquoise earrings and bracelet that came in a Dream Box.
Victoria has loved putting her wish in her Dream Box once a week.
So far all her dreams have some true....with a little bit of help.

For dessert we had decorate your own cupcakes with edible pearls.

And finally a tea pot piñata.
No matter how sophisticated a party, 
it must end with a piñata.

Christian came back just in time!

So hard to believe my little girl is already
six years old.

Our Family

After the guests left Molly did the dishes while I put 
things away.

We flipped the sign and relaxed and rehashed the successful party.

All the details came together to make it a memorable day for Victoria.

Happy Birthday Auntie Sandy

One of my biggest blessings in my childhood was being blessed with my Godmother, Auntie Sandy.
When I was young she would let me watch scary movies when I spent the night.  She got me my first library card and taught me the joy of reading.  She taught me how to latch hook, when I plan on teaching Victoria this summer.
As I got older I could confide in her, knowing she's an adult I could trust with my secrets.

When I was in college I would park my car in Hudson
and spend the weekend on the island with her.

We would chat all day and dance all night.

The day following Mark and my engagement
we headed down to the island because I couldn't wait to tell her.
We still have the picture she took of us that day in our kitchen.

When I was pregnant with Victoria she bought me a gorgeous book about prenatal development and maternity clothes for my birthday.
She has loved my children as if they are her own.
They love to spend the night at Auntie Sandy's where she's teaching them the love of gardening.

Last month we celebrated Auntie Sandy's 60th birthday.

Happy birthday to my wonderful 
Godmother, Aunt and Friend.
I love you to pieces!

Chuck E Cheese

I used to babysit Jonathan a lot when he was little. 
I was in college and he loved when I took him to Chuck E. Cheese.
It was just him and me.
I would follow him around and hand him token after token cheering him on as he played Skee Ball or basketball.  He would almost always opt to save his tickets for next time, envisioning a bigger and better prize.

He saved so long he actually didn't like going to Chuck E. Cheese any long.
I kept the slips in my wallet for years.
Several years ago I asked him if he minded if Victoria used them.
Of course, he didn't.

Last time we were at Chuck E. Cheese we needed just a few more tickets to get the kids everything they wanted.
I searched in all the little compartments of my wallet and found this.

It's dated December 30, 2002.

It stayed safely - although a bit yellowed - in my wallet for over a decade.

Sebastian Alexander

On June 21st, after a very long labor, Odelis gave birth to a gorgeous little boy they named
Sebastian Alexander.
He is simply precious.
I couldn't wait to get to the hospital 
and take pictures of the new family of three.

This picture is beyond words.
It's such a cliche,
but they really are small for such a short short time.

When Sebastian was just a week only I took the kids to visit him at his home.

They were very interested in this new little baby.

Christian has been waiting to hold him for nine long months.

Victoria enjoyed playing with Monte a little bit more than she did with

This little dude couldn't get enough of the littlest dude.

Sebastian's nursery looks like it's straight out of a catalog.

We're looking forward to spending time with Sebastian as
he grows and learns.

Congratulations again Alex and Odelis.
He's absolutely perfect!