The – Shrek the Musical – Party

For my daughter’s 5th birthday party she decided on a “Shrek the Musical,” party. We found this musical on Netflix and she feel in love with it, watching it probably 20 times.

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In my opinion, this musical is FAB.U.LOUS! Go and put it on your netflix list right now!

For days after we watch it, I’ll hear my family humming the tunes or sometimes they bust out with the words. Alright, I’ll admit it, I sing and dance around the house to it as well.

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A Shrek the Musical 5th Birthday Party. Hmmm…I put my thinking cap on and came up with what I think was a pretty fun party. So here’s the party recap:

Caroline greeted her guests outside with some sidewalk chalk paint. Using cornstarch, water, and food coloring I used this recipe to make the paint.

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After everyone had arrived at the party, we went inside to watch our first clip of the movie which was the opening scene introducing Shrek. After watching the movie for about 8 -10 minutes we stopped and played, Stinky Shrek, our own version of hot potato. Several years ago my mom gave us a hot potato game with a built in beeper. I simply covered the hot potato in green fabric and we played Stinky Shrek – last person with the Stinky Shrek (hot potato) was the winner.

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We then watched another clip of the musical which introduces the donkey.

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After the clip we played – Pin the Tail on the donkey – a classic birthday game. I once again used our tracer and made the donkey out of construction paper.

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Next was a clip which introduced the gingerbread man and Lord Farquaad.

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Since I had enough to do to get ready for this party, I paid a friend who was just starting up a baking business to make sugar cookie gingerbread men for me. The kids enjoyed decorating their gingerbread men with frosting and candy. I had little baggies for the kids to take the gingerbread men home in but that did not work out since everyone wanted to eat their creation immediately.

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Next up was the musical scene which introduced Princess Fiona. Sutton Foster plays Fiona in the Netflix musical and she is just outstanding. She was nominated for a Tony for this role.

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To celebrate being a Princess like Fiona the girls made princess necklaces. The necklaces were plastic beads with large holes through the center. I also gave the girls a castle charm that they could place somewhere on their necklace. Since this party was for 4, 5, and 6 yr. olds I thought using a needle and stretchy thread might be a little difficult for them so I glued (using a glue gun) the needle to the piece of thread so the needle couldn’t fall off. I then glued a piece of fabric at the end of the thread so that the plastic beads wouldn’t come off on the other side. The girls really enjoyed making their necklaces. It was fun to see some of the girls where their necklaces to school the next week.

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The last musical scene the girls watched was Princess Fiona tap dancing with the Pied Piper’s rats.

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I decided to make tap shoes for the girls – the cheap way! I bought bottle caps at Hobby Lobby and glued (with a glue gun) them to a rubber band. I placed the hot glue in the bottom section of the bottle caps. The “tap shoes” were easy to put on since they just slipped right over their shoes.

At this time the girls also received their green  Princess Fiona crown – the same one Caroline had been sporting the whole party.

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The girls “tapping” like Princess Fiona in our garage.

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Last up on the party agenda were cupcakes with Shrek character toppers. Normally I try and make a character cake for birthday but Caroline requested cupcakes so cupcakes it was. She helped me choose the characters she wanted on the toppers and we printed them right out.

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So that’s it.

A “Shrek the Musical Birthday” party for my daughter’s 5th birthday.

I think I enjoyed planning it as much as she enjoyed sharing it with her friends.

And seriously, go watch this musical, it’s terrific!

Posted in birthdays, budget, caroline, crafts, organization, party | 4 Comments

Halloween Pillows Made by Kids

I was walking through the store the other day when I found orange polka dot napkins on clearance. I decided to pick up a few since I thought they would make some fun Halloween pillows.

My 5 yr old and 9 yr old decided on Halloween silhouettes they wanted to paint onto the fabric. We then used the tracer to transfer the image onto the pillow. My son used a Sharpie which promptly bled through the think material onto the wall – yay!

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My 9 yr old then painted his image with fabric paint staying inside the lines as best he could. For the 5 yr old, I decided to place blue painter’s tape around the image to help her.

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I was planning on keeping the pillows in their original square shape but then realized they would have been huge. So we decided to cut around the shape, leaving room to sew the edges.

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They chose to use a Halloween fabric we already had for the back of the pillow.

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After they sewed around the edges, stuffed the pillows, and closed the last opening we were done!

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Now here’s the thing. These will never make the cover of House Beautiful or any decorating site but my kids loved making them and love seeing them on the sofa. Every time they walk by the pillows they try and fluff them or stand them upright. and you can just see their sense of pride.

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But here’s actually my favorite part of this whole project…

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…their names written in permanent marker. Nothing sweeter than little kid handwriting.

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Happy Halloween!

Posted in Andrew, art work, caroline, crafts, decorations, holiday | 4 Comments

Super Mom?

The other day my 5 year old and I were lying on the bed reading our own books after shower time.

I was reading a wonderful book and Caroline was looking at a Wonder Woman book she had chosen from the library.

I was enjoying our calm moment together when suddenly Caroline said with a sigh, “I guess I’ll never know who my real parents are.”

And then she continued reading as if she had just stated she wanted a glass of water.

I paused for a moment debating my options. After all, I do have a 6 inch scar proving that this kid came from my body. I decided to run with it.

“Who are your real parents?”

“They’re super heroes.”

“What super power do they have?”

“They can fly.”

“I wish Daddy and I had super powers like that.”

“Me too.”

“I love you Caroline.”

“I love you too Mommy.”

Posted in caroline, observations, parenting | 1 Comment

My “Mom Cap”

Sometimes I find it’s hard to take off the “Mom” cap.

When I find myself telling my husband that I’m going potty?

Mom cap.

Or what about when we are leaving the house and I ask my husband, “Aren’t you going to bring a jacket? The restaurant could be cold.”

Mom cap.

But don’t worry, I don’t limit these ridiculous moments to just my husband.

Tonight, when the dog was barking outside at 10:00, I brought her in and proceeded to tell her that she had made a poor choice and because of that she needed to come inside. “There are consequences when you make a poor choice.”

Seriously. Those words came out of my mouth. TO A DOG.

Mom cap? Insane cap?

I think it’s a fine line.

 

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Summer Fun 2014

Yesterday was officially the first day of Fall and the kids have started their 5th week of school but I still can’t shake the feeling of it being summer.

Maybe it’s because it’s still in the 90’s here or that I still love to spend days with my kids in our pajamas.

But I’m proud to say that I am moving in the direction of fall since in the last week I drove  my kids to school only 50% of the time while sporting my pajama pants.

I thought it was now or never to show you our summer fun list since it’s time to move toward ghosts, goblins, and all things pumpkin.

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We were all quite busy this summer…

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visiting many people and places…

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…and having tons of fun.

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I guess it’s really time to say goodbye summer…

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and hello Fall.

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But maybe we’ll do that tomorrow since we are too busy going to the pool today.

Posted in activities, Alex, Andrew, caroline, family, summer | Comments Off

A Simple & Easy Rug

Due to a rather unfortunate stomach bug that hit our family last year I needed to invest in a new bathroom rug.

I did not want to spend a lot of money because inevitably there will be another bug that will cause several of us to lay on the floor unable to muster the strength required to walk to the bed. Instead we will spend hours on the floor with our pillow and blankets moaning and groaning.

Therefore, we needed a new rug. (Plus the tile gets so darn cold and slippery).

My family and I were wandering the Habitat store one day when I stumbled upon carpet squares for $1.99. We searched through piles and piles of squares to find just the right ones with the pattern I wanted and the quality my husband wanted.

We found 8 tiles that were good so we went home, placed them in a corner of our bedroom, and left them there for 8 months.

I kid you not. That’s sort of our MO around here.

Finally one day we dragged them into the bathroom and started the incredibly tedious and time consuming project of taping them together.

I think it took 15 minutes.

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We chose to alternate the carpet squares so that the pattern would be a little more interesting than just straight lines.

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A new 4 ft x 8 ft carpet in the bathroom.

I still need to add some glue strips, using a glue run, to the bottom to keep the carpet from moving around.

I’m aiming for 2016 to complete that project.

Posted in bathroom, family, house projects, husbands, Uncategorized | Comments Off

Move Over Mia Hamm

So this happened last weekend…

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Caroline played in her first soccer game.

After watching her brothers play in roughly 692,000 games over the last five years, she is so excited to be on a team and play in her own games.

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To mark the occasion, Caroline and I went to buy a new pink mesh bag which holds her new pink soccer ball. We also dusted off her brother’s old cleats and shin guards which she couldn’t be more happy to get to wear – except for the fact that she hates the feeling of the shin guards so she puts her socks on first and then puts the shin guards on top of the socks.

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Now with Caroline, who we like to call “spirited,” there was no telling what the first game would bring – happiness? tears? refusal to play?

Well, I’m happy to report she was so happy (anyone else feel like this post should be sponsored by Pharrell Williams?)! She ran and ran around the field. At times, she was no where near the ball, just playing her own imaginary game, serpentining all around the field.

While the rest of us were sweating in the 101 degree heat, she was running around with such joy.

Apparently she runs better when sticking out her tongue because she did that the entire game – from here on out I’m calling her the Michael Jordan of soccer.

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Of course when she wasn’t sticking her tongue out while running she was squeezing her lips while she watched everyone else go for the ball. Everyone else is cheering ,”Run,” while my husband and I are cheering, “Get your hands out of your mouth.”

 

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And then the ball came her way!

And she ran with it!

Kicking it down the field!

 

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And she scored!

The smile that came from her was amazing.

(I would have loved to show you that smile but my 9 year old had the camera at the time and stopped taking pictures right before she scored. I think he was as excited as the rest of us for Caroline and was cheering).

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Goal or no goal, game 692,001 was a success!

Move over Mia, here comes Caroline!

Posted in activities, caroline, exercise, family, games, observations, parenting, sports | 3 Comments

A Little “Old Lady”

My 5 year old and I went shoe shopping for me the other day.

I was in need of a new pair of heels and since the boys had already started school Caroline went with me.

At  the first store the saleslady handed me the tan nylon socks to try some shoes on with. While I couldn’t have cared less about them, Caroline was enamored with them. She grabbed herself a pair to try on and then “tried on” many pairs of shoes. I didn’t find anything I liked so we went on with our search.

In and out of stores we went, desperately looking for a pair that were comfy, cheap, and most importantly, came in a size 10.

Sidenote: For all of you people with average feet I am deeply envious. To be able to walk up to a shoe display and actually place your entire foot into the shoe to see how it looks is something I can only dream of. I place my size 10 feet into the display shoes and get to see how three of my crunched up toes look.

Anyway, Caroline and I were searching for a pair of simple gold heels for my brother’s wedding. Well, at least that’s what I was searching for. Apparently Caroline was searching for shoes for me to go walk the streets of Louisville and pick up a few extra bucks while on our trip.

She pulled heels with three inch soles, heels with bows, heels with bows and buckles, heels with clear soles, pink patent leather heels, and her personal favorite, heels completely decorated in varying blue and green sequins which resulted in a peacock feathers design.

She was able to pull these shoes because they were all in the clearance section.

I can’t imagine why.

For some of the shoes I humored her and put them on when she asked me too. I mean, how else would I have known that five inch heels are not my thing – although the blue sequin ones did give me a moments pause.

After several stores we decided we needed to eat some lunch. While standing in line waiting for our lunch, I realized Caroline had added to her shorts and t-shirt combo from this morning.

On her feet were the nylon socks she had tried on in the first store.

Sandals and nylons. It’s like I was shopping with an 85 year old woman.

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Caroline knew she had the “socks” on and was completely content with her look. After a brief moment of weighing my options, I decided I was going to be content too so I said nothing.

We finished our shopping, eventually finding a pair of shoes which worked for me – spoiler alert: they were not the blue sequined peacock shoes.

As we left the store walking hand and hand I looked down at Caroline and just smiled.

Shoe shopping with my little “old lady” was definitely a good day.

Tomorrow we have to go shoe shopping for her – I kind of want to stop by the lady’s department first  : )

Posted in caroline, family, observations, parenting, shoes | 1 Comment

Hello, Is Anyone Out There?

Hello.

Is anyone out there?

It’s been so long since I posted and yet it seems like just yesterday.

I’m not sure I even remember how to post anymore.

Since March I’ve sat down at the computer many times to write but it just didn’t happen. Maybe next week I’ll write. Maybe next month I’ll write because my heart won’t hurt so much. Well before you know its six months later and your heart still hurts.

Now please don’t call the authorities on me or send out the counselors.

I’ve got plenty to be happy and thankful for. My children and my husband make me laugh and smile every single day. Really its every single hour.

I’m here to say that its possible to move on but still have a tiny place in your heart that will always be sad. I think that’s the way it is for anyone who’s experienced a death. And for me it was the death of a dream, of a family member I had already placed deep into my heart.

Who knows what the future holds for us but I do want you to know that I’m here and experiencing life and its joys and I think I’m just about ready to start sharing with you again.

After all, how else am I going to remember that my daughter called my tummy squishy and my personal favorite lately…

Mom, take off your sunglasses.

OK. Why?

I want to see all those crinkles by your eyes.

(Sigh) Do you want to know who put a lot of those crinkles there?

Yes.

You.

Me?

Yes you. With the help of your brothers.

Maybe you should put your sunglasses back on so we don’t see the crinkles.

Sounds like a plan.

Posted in adoption, caroline, observations, parenting | 7 Comments

My Lifetime Movie Life

There are times when I feel like my life is being filmed for a TV movie of the week for the Lifetime Channel.

And this is one of those times.

Two days before Valentine’s Day we received word from the federal attorneys that our adoption agency was being shut down.

As in goodbye, kaput, all gone, no more.

And our money that we had turned in?

It was also goodbye, kaput, all gone, no more.

Thousands and thousands of dollars.

We were informed that if we had received a referral the government would help us finish the adoption process.

We were literally next on the list to receive a referral.

So that leaves us, and one hundred other families, with no adoption to follow through with and federal attorneys who say it’s completely up to us if we want to try and get some of our money back. They can’t help us. They are going to keep us up to date on legal proceedings but helping us with money? Nope. Can’t do. Not our area folks.

See, just like a Lifetime movie.

But sadly there’s no Tom Selleck or Dana Delaney character who’s about to sweep in and take our case.

Believe me when I say I had no humor about this situation when it first happened.

I almost instantly became physically ill with a severe cold and eventually lost my voice.

I blame it on all the crying. and the crying. and the crying.

I had to run a Valentine’s Day party for my son in the initial midst of this and all I really wanted to do was run out of there and sit on the couch watching movies and eating girl scout cookies.

(Don’t even get me started on how many girls can go to camp this year because of my cookie intake in the last 3 weeks).

Even though adoption is something I had wanted to do my whole life, it’s not a decision my husband and I came to easy. There were miscarriages, heart to heart talks, and a long process to get us to the point of actually moving forward with the idea.

I have grumbled with God. Several times.

But God is funny.

Right before we’ve had big losses, I’ve always been offered a job, seemingly out of nowhere. I accept the job and with days to go before my start date something major will happen.

I think it’s God’s way of keeping me moving forward and having a different focus.

I also think I’m never going to take another job in my life. Seems like I might be able to head off some of these life moments.

OK, not true.

But if we win the lottery I might just stick to that thinking.

So I started my new job.

God said, “You think you’ve got problems? Go tutor these homeless kids and then tell me about your problems.”

My new job is tutoring elementary aged kids who are homeless. All of those words should never go together in a sentence but sadly they do.

They are homeless – some sleep in their cars at night, some have beds some of the time until an uncle gets angry and they sleep on the lawn that night with their mom, and some live in shelters.

But I tell you what. They are amazing, beautiful kids. They have the best smiles. They are so eager to learn. They are so happy. They have struggles yes, but they have joy.

And so I take my cue on living life from some 8 year olds who have it much tougher than me.

The past 3 weeks have been a roller coaster of emotions but I feel good about where I am going with this whole life experience.

We are not quite sure what our next step is but that’s okay.We’ve got each other and we’ve got a roof over our heads.

The rest will work itself out.

And if it doesn’t, I’m sure I could hunt down Tom Selleck’s phone number from somewhere.

Posted in adoption, observations, parenting | 8 Comments