February 28, 2011


We had a blast at the MoMA on Saturday!  How come we never knew about the Material Lab?!  Okay, I just looked it up and it arrived February 19th (I assumed it was a permanent exhibit...because it should be!!!)  So, New York moms...GO TO THE MATERIAL LAB...before August 29th!!!  Both Isabella and Oliver LOVED it.  They close it at 5pm and I wish we would have arrived before 4:30pm, we could have spent a lot more time there.

We missed the Tours for Fours, but plan to make it to one soon.  Isabella is at such a fun age now.  We can finally do these cool things and she gets it and loves it too.

Here are a few not-so-great phone photos of the Material Lab:

These are tactile boxes that the kids can touch, feel, smell, etc. various materials and learn what art has been made with them.  Oliver spent a lot of time with these boxes.

Isabella is using a wireless paintbrush.

This was in the main lobby.  Our daughter has her art hanging in the MoMA.  We are so proud! 

February 24, 2011

Attitude of Gratitude

Isabella: 8 months
I have to confess: I haven't been very grateful lately.  The goal of documenting things I'm grateful for was to help me cultivate a more positive attitude in my daily life.  But during the last week or so my thoughts have been, "I'm grateful February is finally half over." or "I'm grateful Oliver peed on the wood floor instead of the carpet." or "I'm grateful I didn't yell again today!"  Not the most positive thoughts, I know.  But that's where I was.  A small pity party for sure.

Fortunately, I seem to be out of that rut and moving forward.  Thank heaven's.

Yesterday as I was doing the dishes I was bemoaning the fact that our hot water is scalding hot.  Even with dish gloves on it can burn!  (It only takes a minute to get that water to boil!  Crazy, I know!)  I stopped myself from that downward spiral of negativity.  "What?!  I'm complaining that all I have to do is twist a faucet and clean, hot water pours into a sink?!"

That took me on an upward spiral of positive thoughts.  Reminding myself that I am so extremely wealthy and live in luxury.  I am one of the wealthiest people in the world.  I have all my needs and wants met.  I have an abundance of good food, warmth, education, health, freedom, etc.  I am SO blessed!  So fortunate!  So rich!

Today, I'm grateful for clean dishes and positive thoughts!

February 23, 2011

Amazing Women!

In 2010 a total of 18 babies were born in our congregation at church.  Each family received 14 days of delicious, homemade meals delivered by foot, bus, subway, etc. by other members of the congregation.  That makes a total of 252 meals delivered last year.

These women are amazing and I'm so grateful I have the opportunity to share this bit of my life with them.  Thirteen of the 18 are pictured in order of baby birth, oldest to youngest; boys in the back, girls in front.

Simply beautiful!

Wacky Weather

Last week we got a brief reprieve from this bitter winter.  It was fabulous.  Winter went on vacation for a couple of days and then return in full force on President's Day.

Thursday, February 17th

Friday, February 18th
It was so fantastically warm!  We ended up in Chinatown enjoying some yummy dumplings from Tasty Dumplings.

Monday, February 21st
Sledding and wandering in Central Park

Let's Play Cafe

In an effort to keep us all happy and sane in February (the longest, shortest month of the year) I've searched for some fun ideas to do with the kids.  This is one activity Isabella asks to do everyday and both kids love it!  I got the idea here.  I made a menu and acted as a waitress.  Isabella and "her son" (aka Oliver) come to my restaurant and have drinks.  (Every drink on the menu, to be precise.)  When the drinking is all done Isabella and I add up her bill and count her pennies.

Pieces of Art

I try and do some art with the kids everyday.  Sometimes it is just drawing with crayons on white paper other times it is a big project.  Here's a recent favorite Isabella and I did while Oliver was napping.  I first came across the idea here and then a friend did a similar fun, fantastic project with her kiddos.

This is what we did:

February 15, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

I've never been one to go all out and do creative celebrations for silly holidays (like Valentine's Day).  But I have a little 4 year old who LOVES that kind of stuff...so I've been falling in love with the idea too.

Yesterday I surprised her with pink, heart shaped pancakes.  (A super surprise because most days she has to eat oatmeal or eggs.)  She was in love and didn't even ask for syrup.  (Oliver could care less about the color or shape of his pancakes, but he definitely enjoyed them!)

Simon: 2 months

Yesterday was Simon's 2 month birthday!  He's a sweet little boy.  As long as he is rested and his belly is full he's a happy baby.  Just this last week he is much more content to simply lounge in his bouncy seat and watch all the commotion going on all around him.  Sometimes he will even let me cook dinner while he watches me from afar.  He's quick to smile when smiled at, but we haven't heard much laughter since that video I posted last week.  But that doesn't mean we don't try!  He sleeps fairly well, usually giving me a good 5 hour chunk in the night.

Simon has brought with him some fantastic blessings.  Most days I really do feel like Wonder Woman.  I am much more deliberate with how I spend my time.  I am so much more organized and keep to a pretty rigid schedule, doing all I can to make sure everyone is taken care of.  The amount of energy I have most days amazes me.  I feel much more connected to the people I see regularly; I think because if friends have available hands I pawn off Simon to a them and they love it.  He is adored by many.

Isabella is still very adoring, although a bit less attentive.  She is almost always willing to help Simon stop crying if I need to devote all my attention to Oliver (i.e. when he sits on the potty).  Oliver's affections are a bit unpredictable.  Sweet and tender one minute followed up by a bit of aggression.  We are figuring that one out.

Simon, we LOVE you!

February 14, 2011

Right Now

Loving the warm sunshine.

Attitude of Gratitude

I am so grateful for my children's imaginations. I love that boxes are
quickly transformed into props for any possible scenario: cars, train,
swimming pools, and beds within a short time.

These sweet little ones fill my life with light, joy, and so much
creativity. I love it!

February 8, 2011

'Tis the season

for building forts!
(or tents, or caves, or whatever they may be called today)

Right Now: Video

This is sweet Simon laughing.

I'm also curious if I can post a video via my phone.

February 2, 2011

Little Explorers: Milk Magic

A couple of friends have recently asked if I have any good science experiments they could do with their kids with basic household stuff.  Ummm...YES!  Of course!  I'll attempt to gradually post my favorites as I do them with Isabella and Oliver.  If you try it out let me know how it goes and if you want me to post more.  I'd love your feedback!

Milk Magic

Here's what you need:
  • whole milk
  • food coloring
  • liquid dish soap
  • q-tips
  • pie plate
Pour the milk into the pie plate just enough to completely cover the bottom.  Let it settle for a minute.  Put a drop (or two) of each color of food coloring into the milk, near the center (but not on top of each other).  Dip the end of your q-tip into the liquid dish soap and put that right into the center of the milk.  Hold it there and watch the magic.  Younger kids will want to stir it, but encourage them to just hold the q-tip in one place.  Or pick up the q-tip and place it in another part of the plate to see what happens.

What is happening:

The fat and protein molecules in the milk are very sensitive to change.  When you add the soap to the milk the molecules go crazy and move around.  By adding the food coloring we can actually see how these fats and proteins act when combined with soap.

Extreme experimentation:

What happens if you try it in water or low-fat milk?

P.S. If any of you locals are ever interested in fun liquid nitrogen experiments (ice cream, perhaps?) let me know.  I can totally hook you up!

Attitude of Gratitude

I am grateful for a small home.  Some of the benefits of our little apartment:

  • it is easier and quicker to clean
  • we purchase and consume less stuff
  • we frequently clean out and purge the stuff we do have
  • we are always together as a family
  • I can keep close tabs on my little ones (usually :))
  • I use my awesome tetris skills when storing stuff in closets and cupboards
  • it encourages us to get out of the house and experience new, exciting things
I love the random photos my kids take.  They are like little prizes in a cereal box.

February 1, 2011

Attitude of Gratitude

I am so grateful for my amazing body.  In the last four and a half years it has created and birthed three beautiful, big babies.  It heals quickly and despite the lack of sleep it continues to function well (and produces milk, how wild is that?!).  I feel so blessed to have such a strong, healthy body.

This photo was taken on our 300 mile bike ride from Pittsburgh to Washington D.C. in 2004.
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