Monday, December 31, 2007

My Loves December

Putting up the Christmas Tree even when you were so tired.
Being so supportive on my Holiday Tour
Being the MOST worried about lil sis' Ellie when we misplaced her for a few days....driving all the way back to the church to look for her.
Reading the girls Bear Stays Up.
Coming home and helping clean up when I had been busy photo editing
Going along with all my Christmas Parties and Surprise Ideas
Being upset when I accidentally discovered my Christmas presents hiding place.
Buying me new presents so that I had something to open on Christmas Morning.
Telling lil sis about Santa and counting out the 8 carrots that big sis insisted on.
Working so hard to provide for us.
Saying YES all the time.
Loving our girls as much as you do.
Being the best hugger ever.
Going to Disneyland when I know you hate crowds...

Big Sis
Motioning to me that I still had my scarf on during my warm up for the performance...glad someone's got my back.
Your moxie when it came down the came through for your solo!
Going to the PS 1 Moma together, just us.
You at your first violin recital
Your pure enthusiasm for all things Christmas and Hanukkah for that matter
Your face while you ice skate
Holding hands with me
Your toothy gummy smiles
Being so excited for the parties
The outfits you put together for church and parties...lots of layering happening
Being so patient with your teacher's apparent bad breath
opening your heart and soul up to your family, whom you don't see that often and don't always know so well.
playing Go Fish with Cindy
Spending the afternoon with your great grandparents.
Whispering to Santa that you wanted a Hannah Montana set for Christmas
Your excitement about caroling
Working very hard to write and illustrate your talk about Jesus' birth for primary
Working so hard to learn your Christmas duet for church...being so brave while performing it.
Suggesting "Last Christmas" (WHAM, Ashley Tisdale) as a song in primary at church, everyone agreeing that it would be ok to sing....
ALWAYS watching out for lil sis....bringing her home an extra cookie from school, talking your ballet teachers into giving HER a ballet barbie for Christmas thoughtful all the time.
Being the ultimate flexible traveler...sleeping on the plane, schlepping your stuff, practicing while on are a dream.

Lil Sis
Being brave when we misplaced your favorite Ellie for a few days...asking for Ellie every 5 minutes.
Strutting around the National Theatre declaring you are a princess.
Helping me with the laundry
Eating Sandwiches together at the counter
You playing the itty bitty violin
The way you say Christmas and Disneyland
Being so excited with the announcement we were going to see Grammy and Papa
Telling everyone Santa is coming through your window
Answering: PRESENTS, whenever anyone asked: What do you want Santa to bring you?
Your lipstick obsession
Making sure everyone had a card when caroling, inviting yourself into people's houses....loving getting cookies wherever we caroled
Dancing to the subway performer's music
Your little body, sitting on the edge of your seat, dancing while watching the Rockettes...worth the price of all our tickets and thensome
Your tender loving care toward all dogs that cross your path...some of your few gentle moments
Swallowing your gum EVERY time....
Loving Coke as much as I do....shhhh...don't tell anyone, I only give you a few sips after all
STILL talking about your haircut everyday
Continuing to embody who you are, and not accepting any adjective to describe you ACCEPT your first given name....that's my lil sis. "No, I'm not cute, I'm LILSIS!"
When we close your nightly prayers, that are sometimes said in a hurry, you saying: "HEY! What about Chloe? or Sam? or whoever is on your mind that night that we forgot."

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Christmas Surprise #3

Our final surprise of the season was a trip to California.

We have spent the past few days spending time with DH's family in Southern CA. It has been very nice to catch up and extremely entertaining spending 3 plus meals in a retirement community. I have been recording quotes the past few days and observing the lovely, wise old people. I even found the old lady that I am going to be one day. She had a list of all the apartment doors she needed to go visit to witness the best Christmas decorations. She was riding the elevator from floor to floor with here little paper, and I thought: well, there goes me in 50 years or so...

The best part of this leg of the trip was big sis. She was so excited about being with her great grandparents. She even volunteered to spend the entire afternoon with them, all by herself. When we returned after some much needed naps in the hotel, she had made a cake, printed some business cards and changed clothes into the new outfit that great grandma had bought her. She LOVED dining in the dining hall at the retirement community...she felt very special indeed.

A bonus to the third surprise is seeing some of our best friends who left us in NYC the past few years. We will be spending the day at Disneyland with them tomorrow. I have heard it is going to be extremely crowded, so the girls and I watched some of our favorite rides on you tube tonight, in case we don't get our fix in person. Even if we don't go on one ride, it will still be a memorable New Year's Eve!

I hope 2008 is a great year for you and yours...

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Jib Jab Fun

This is my first time having a laptop while on the road. The Wi-fi in our hotel is the best I have experienced so far in our adventures. Marian sent me an e card the other day from jib jab, and I had to resend the same one to my family to thank them for having us for Christmas. It's below...

Don't send a lame Holiday eCard. Try JibJab Sendables!

Thursday's Adventure: 2 Toots Grill

Christmas Surprise #2 was a surprise trip to see my parents in Naperville. Our kids were told on Christmas Day, and my parents never knew...we just SHOWED UP o Christmas DAY. There is a fabulous surprise video in the making, that I will probably share next week, but for now, here are a few pix from one of our lunches spent on our Chicagoland Trip.

We ate lunch at the 2 Toots Grill in Downers Grove, Illinois. Nothing beats lunch delivered to you by toy train!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Feature Film Debut

Well, if you don't count the extra work I did in Mona Lisa Smile, which I am sure I was not even remotely seen in....then this is my feature film debut!

My friend E-Dawg just reported that Lil Sis and I are in the film JUNO. Well, actually, the magazine, PARENTS is in the film, and we just happen to be on the cover. I am calling my lawyers right now to see what sort of residuals they can get me ; ) !

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Surprise #1

On Christmas Eve we hopped the E train and headed to the Radio City Music Hall. Once there we told the girls we were going to see the Rockettes. They had seen the Christmas Spectacular on TV, so they knew what that meant. There was a lot of screaming and squealing involved! It was completely magical as we watched our girls take it all in. One of our best parenting moments ever, as DH and I made eye contact over our giddy little girls. It was such a wonderful Christmas Eve.

I shed a tear when the angel of the Lord flew over the shepherds in the fields. The final scene was this one, which was just so beautiful and magical. The girls loved the live camels, sheep and donkey.

After the show we went to take some pictures by the GIANT tree at Rockefeller Center. This photo is my first hand at photoshopping. I do not have the original, but you will have to take my word that there was a guy dressed in a black coat and hat right behind big sis on the right, and the head of someone on the bottom left of the photo. POOF! Gone.

My cute DH and his cute new glasses, and me. We had such a fun Christmas Eve.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Gradually Going Green

I had heard about the GREEN themed windows over at Barneys, but I just got over there this morning....almost too late! Enjoy.

The city scape is made of cosmetic and jewelry boxes, and the people are covered in metrocards. The train tracks orbiting the big apple have boxes on them that house the toy subway cars that you can buy at the transit museum. SO creative.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Caroling, Caroling

I took the girls caroling on Tuesday night....and we got our picture taken, check them out here.

As we skated at The Pond on Friday, I noticed an observer with a really nice camera and asked him to snap our photo and email it to us. Ah, the magic of the www....he sent it to me via email yesterday and I love it. I do wish our skates were in the shot, but I think you still get a feel for what we were up to in the picture. Big Sis' face is just magic....she smiles like that the ENTIRE time she skates, even if she takes a little spill.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Friday, December 21, 2007

Festive Friday

Festive Nails:

First Snow, it came early this year...and didn't do much sticking...

Us at a party:

Telling Santa her Christmas Wishes:

The amazing windows at Macy's:

Today I am off to the Met to see the final dress rehearsal of Hansel and Gretel, for FREE (never done this before, I hope I am successful getting in!). This afternoon I am taking Big Sis ice skating again....and then the festivities of Christmas REALLY begin...

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Third Person Thursday

She had seen all sorts of subway and street performers in her 5 plus years in NYC. Usually she could tell who it was before she reached them. There is the saw lady, the ebony hillbillies, the opera guy, accordian guy, Guitar Twins, the tap dancer with drummer, the steel drum guy, the guy who sambas with a dummy woman...the list goes on.

On this day, she approached a LARGE crowd of people, all of which seemed to be thoroughly engaged with the subway act of the moment. There wasn't usually an act in this particular spot. Occasionally there was a girl who would stand on a box frozen until you paid her box...then she would blow kisses or do a little ballet routine or something...but that's about it.

She somewhat reluctantly approached the crowds with her children, sure that if something was getting THIS much attention is must be dirty or inappropriate for children. She being tall, TRIED to look over the crowd to see what the fuss was about, but she couldn't see a thing. Finally the girls inched there way through the crowd to the front, and only then was she able to catch a glimpse of the Michael Jackson Impersonator.

She had seen one before, but not this particular one. And no it wasn't dirty, but some of the dance moves were a little, well, Michael Jacksonish. She watched the rest of his show with the girls and her friend, and then let the girls contribute to his hat. It was his idea to take the picture. Cool. She loves New York.

Notice big sis bending her knees. (SHE had to do that with a few boyfriends....)

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Love Scarf Project!

Scarves Update:

An email from the NYC Love Scarf Guy:

"Hi. We delivered approximately 80 items to Columbia Presbyterian Hospital on Tuesday, December 18. The reaction of the patients and the Hospital Staff was very special and the Hospital Staff look forward to this being an annual event. One woman was being released as we got to her room and she immediately put on her scarf and was wearing it as she was leaving. You and your friends did amazing and I can only tell you that you should feel good about what these items meant to the people who received them. Thank you so much."

Early Christmas Present

I got my Christmas present from DH BEFORE Thanksgiving...I know I know...but it was so great because I could use my gift FOR Thanksgiving:

I love them, and at 50% can't beat it as a Christmas gift! Thanks Honey!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Christmas Window

My cousin inspired me today.

He posted his outdoor Christmas Lights for all to see. And so I have posted mine here:

Our mutual other cousin's light display is really not to be reckoned with. People come to see it by bus...that's how popular it is. It's amazing...and I personally think he deserves more than $100 for his prize. Check out the equipment alone that goes into his display.

When I bought my five stars to put in my windows, I had high hopes for the amount of light they would put forth. I obviously have not come to terms with just how LARGE my windows are. These 5 little stars bring me so much joy. I love seeing them out there, the lone tribute to Christmas, with just one other balcony that I heard has lights, but I have yet to witness!

Tonight the girls and I went caroling. 5 couples we know live in a building nearby, so we spread our Christmas Cheer with carols and cards. Then we came home and caroled to our super and our neighbors. The girls scored cookies at 3 unexpected surprise, and now they LOVE caroling! It was so much fun to do as our Family Home (Away) Evening tonight. We sang Jingle Bells and Silent Night, and by the last house, lil sis even got the "HEY!" in the right place. Super.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Love Scarf Project!

The final count:
Scarves: 25 (all hand knit but 1)
Hat: 1
Gloves: 6 Pairs!

THANK YOU to everyone who donated their service for the Love Scarf Project. I am told they are being delivered tomorrow, and I am expecting a report from Leon Seidman, who is delivering them himself!

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Festive Friday

We have finally been elfed.

There are two women bodies and two men bodies, and my DH ended up with a woman. Poor guy, he just can't catch a break!
Elf Dancers!

This week we visited the light show at Grand Central Station and the model train set at the Transit Museum Shop:

We made Cookies:

We got to wear special red lipstick in honor of a party we hosted last weekend:

We drew some festive pictures:

And we got new Christmas Jammies and House shoes! They say KISS ME!, and they totally fulfill my Lanz Nightgown needs:

Third Person Thursday

She and her daughter had a photoshoot today. A rare treat for both of them.

After watching big sis in her little dance recital at school, they trudged off to be models in Soho. When the train reached the station, she noticed wet shoulders on waiting passengers and realized the wintry mix that had been forecast, had arrived. She was not prepared. She had taken the gamble on the snow/wintry mix, and decided that it would only snow. She was wrong.

They carefully made there way to the studio, somewhat dry. She and lil sis dressed in the most summery dresses one could imagine, and they were both grateful that the heat was on full power. Lil sis did a really great job with her solo shot, and the two of them had a great time with their double.

The photographer happened to catch a frame that had little to do with the story. This frame (by Horan) describes their dynamic to a TEE!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Cake Auction

Just a few of our winnings...

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Gradually Going Green Christmas List

Here's just a few ideas for Going Green with your Christmas Gifts this year:

Super Cute and Affordable Reusable Bags
Thanks for the link Wendy!

One-of-a-kind, hand-made, reversible AWESOME and Original, there's-only-one-left Bag by my BFF....!

Sigg Bottles. They are so stylish, and so earth-friendly.

Junk Mail Reduction Kit.

Instead of buying a gift and putting it in a box and wrapping it up, and then putting it another box and filling it with styrofoam peanuts, and then wrapping it in more paper and taping it up and then spending time and money to send it... make a charitable donation on behalf of your friend/family member, and include that in your recyclable Christmas Card to them!

Give Wisely Here. Last Christmas someone gave me the gift of sending 2 girls to school in Afghanistan.

Email Gift Certificates...Itunes is my favorite one to email! No paper, no plastic, no cd's involved.

Anything from Green Home.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Love Scarf Deadline

Today is the day that I need to have all scarves handed in...well, ACTUALLY I need to deliver them by the 15th, so if you still have them, email me TODAY for the address and RUN to your post office so that they get to me on time! I want to have 20! Anyone out there gonna make it happen? anyone?

Friday, December 07, 2007

Festive Friday

Here are a few photos to recap the festivities we participated in this week:

Thursday, December 06, 2007

I am sending gajillions of spam to the world...apparently

Sorry about slow posting, Comp. has been acting K-RAZY. So, my post today is someone else's. That's my little cutie girl....circa 5 years ago.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Times Square Debut

A few months ago I had a wrangling job for Target. It was a very long day, but not because of the actual work, but more for the drama.

The first shot involved a little girl pulling a Christmas Tree. After she got over the itchiness of her tights (I supplied her with some magic lotion that takes itches away), she did a really good job dragging that heavy tree. Many many many frames later, she was released for the day.

By then the adult model's custom-built afghan dress had been tailored to fit and she got on set to do her many many many frames.

Next up was a girl and boy on a sled. They must have changed her clothes, no joke, 17 times. They were after JUST the right combination of reds and whites. He was wearing this purple and red number and they never changed his outfit. We must have waited hours and hours for this shot to be complete, and it appeared to be a wardrobe issue. I laughed when I saw that they just photoshopped everything generic red and white...after ALL that! If you are a Project Runway fan, you may recognize her as Nick's model in Season 2. She is most memorable to me for her Barbie Doll Challenge Runway Walk, because Nick won that challenge.

The last shot of the day was on a sled. There were two tweens involved with the shot, which is why I had to stay. Right when we got our boy model on the sled he got a call from his Dad saying that their surrogate mother (in Boston) had gone into labor, and he demanded that his son be taken off the set. The boy was extremely dramatic about the whole thing and in an instant, we lost our model.

We were desperate, so we went down to Chelsea Piers and tried to find a model. We found the PERFECT kid from LA and his Dad happened to be an agent...and they would not let him go do the job b/c it was their last night in NYC and they were fixing to take a boat ride. We then tried a little toddler who just wigged out about having to change his clothes. I then called my manager and she jetted downtown with her son and his friend...well her son's skin was a bit too dark and his friend was Asian...apparently they were going for a very caucasion look. Shoot. We failed. They kept shooting the four on the sled, but it is apparent from this photo that they must have re-shot it with a new model boy at a later date. I was not involved in the end.

And thus ends the legendary Christmas Tale of the Target Times Square Billboards. And did I mention Manhattan does not have a Target anywhere on the Island?

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Holiday Tour 2007

So I made a little video of the Holiday "Tour". Enjoy:

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Angels we have Heard on High

In honor of my 630th post...I have saved this VERY special treat...

If you will not get a chance to see me at one of three concerts this weekend, please enjoy this performance of my sisters and me:

To see me live, and acting a little better behaved:

Sunday, December 2nd, 2007:
7:00 PM Pre-concert to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir/First Presidency Satellite Presentation

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints:
2034 Great Fall St.
Falls Church, VA 22043

Monday, December 3rd, 2007:
National Theatre ~ Helen Hayes Gallery
1321 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC

6:00 PM and 7:30 PM

All performances are free...if you want to chat with me, I will only be available after the 7:30 show on Monday!