Monday, November 28, 2011


Dear Alice,
You turned 20 months old yesterday,
and are more and more fun every single day.

You still have only 3 teeth, but the 4th should be arriving any day now.

I weighed you on the monkey scale at the zoo.
25 pounds!

You're talking like crazy!
New words everyday.
But you still sign quite a bit, too.
You're signing "time" in this photo:

You were probably telling me it was time to go outside...
one of your favorite things to do. 

It seems like you turned into a big kid overnight.
The other day you played on the play structure at Chick-fil-A.
At first you couldn't get up on the first step.
But you kept trying.
You quickly conquered the step and went all the way up...
through the tunnels...
and even down the huge slide...

You know (expressively and receptively) most of the colors,
a handful of letters and numbers,
all of the major body parts,
animals and their sounds,
and a bunch of other stuff I can't think of right now.

You say funny things sometimes, 
like "No, uh-uh, no, uh-uh."
and you call your pacifier "pappy"
and sometimes you say "ow" for "yes".

Speaking of the pappy,
enjoy it now.
It's days in our home are numbered.

And my favorite thing=when you say "hold you" when you want to be held.
I love that!

I always want to remember these little toes...

and these little chubby hands...

We adore you, sweet baby girl.

Your Mama

Tree Time!

While Alice was napping, we put up the Christmas tree.
We knew she'd be SO excited to see it.

This was her first reaction:
She threw herself on the floor and non-verbally said,
"What the heck!? You guys put a TREE in our house?!?"

She quickly warmed up to the idea.

She pulled up a seat and stayed awhile.
(And now there's a photo of the terrible job I do parting my child's hair.)

It's official.
Having a toddler makes Christmas 10 times more fun.

Thanksgiving Recap and Review

Even though this is Alice's second Thanksgiving,
this is the first year she really got to enjoy it.

She sat at the kid table...

and ate copious amounts of cranberry sauce from a can.

The worst part about the day was Ben was starting to get sick.
He hung in there on Thursday, but was down for the count on Friday.
We suspected strep.

When I was a kid, I loved playing the matching game, Memory.
Comical now that I think about it.
My memory stinks...which is why I take so many pictures.
There was a tile in the game with black and red stripes. 
Like this:
I called it strep throat.
This is what strep throat looks like to me.
Weird, right?
I totally forgot about that until Friday.

Ben's sister and brother-in-law stayed with us for a couple nights.
These little monkeys helped me make muffins one morning:

All in all, a fantastic Thanksgiving!

Winner, Winner, Turkey Dinner!

This is far, far, far from a cooking blog.
But, I did two things right last Thursday:

1. Brussels sprouts

2. Sweet potatoes

I love brussels sprouts.
My in-law's not so much.
So I tricked them!
I chopped the sprouts into ribbons...
added bacon, figs, shallots, and walnuts.
A little balsamic. A splash of orange juice.
I knew it was a winner when my Father-in-law turned to me and said,
"I love this salad! What kind is it?"
He had no idea it was brussels sprouts.
Confirmation came when I forgot to bring the leftovers home with me.
They polished them off!

As for the sweet potatoes,
Ben's family never ate them with Thanksgiving.
Sacrilege, right? 
Ben had a similar dish at his work potluck and loved it, so I gave it a shot. 
I mostly followed this recipe
So good.
Ben's mom, who doesn't like sweet potatoes, had seconds.
I saw her!

I'll be making both again FOR SURE.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


On today's agenda...spending time with family.

Morning movie-in-bed cuddles with Daddy.

Bath time!
Her bedhead is epic.

Visiting with my beautiful niece and her sweet parents.

Geeking out.

After Alice's nap, we went to Target. 
We quickly left when our daughter had a come-apart.

On the way home, Ben suggested we go to the gym.
We checked Alice in to the childcare, which she was excited about,
and had yummy coffees while playing pool.
Best mini-date ever!
It felt a little weird to go to the gym and not workout,
but all three of us left happier than we came.

And then tonight, we hung out with our small group family.
A good day!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


Today's trip: Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

She picked out this coat to wear:
Dressing for the occasion. 
I like it.

Feeding the giraffes:

It was a gorgeous day!
And it felt like we had the zoo to ourselves.
And Alice was in a really great mood.

Monday, November 21, 2011


Mission: The Children's Museum in Denver

Mission accomplished.
Verdict: Not planning to go back anytime soon.
Why: It was REALLY busy.

Begin rant:
I'm not a fan of passive parenting.
I couldn't believe how many parents were on phones, reading books, not watching their kids.
Hey Lady, your child just walked up to mine and shoved her...twice.
DO something before this mama lion takes out your child.
Love, Melissa

Alice had a blast!
It was just a little much for Ben and I. :)

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Staycation Time!

Is the word "staycation" annoying?
Like "jeggings"?

Anyway, Ben has the week off.
The WHOLE week!
I love you, CCB!

This afternoon we walked to Starbucks.
We're so crazy adventurous!
(Kidding. It's a whopping 1.6 miles away.)

Alice enjoyed her first ever hot chocolate.

I tried to get a picture of her chocolate goatee. 
She says, "No, no, no, no, no, no, no..." when I put my phone in her face.

She was pretty cranky tonight...

She only wanted to cuddle, which is a-okay with me.
She's running a low-grade fever.
I'm hoping it's just that pesky 4th tooth that needs to pop through.
Please stay healthy, little one!

Thanksgiving, Part 1

Every year we celebrate Thanksgiving with our small group.
It's one of my favorite nights of the year.
This year, we hosted.

And these are the only pictures I took:
Yep, pictures of the table.
As if THAT'S what I'm going to want to remember when I'm 80 years old 
and thumbing through the book I will one day make from this blog.

Thankfully, Jennifer took proper pictures of the evening.
Thank you, Jennifer.

In short, it was a wonderful evening!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

O Christmas Tree!

I just made something and had to take a picture to share with all 5 of you.

I jumped on the pallet train.
I was going to make a sign, like this one by Lindsey Jo,
but then this happened:

I'm pretty proud of myself because:
1. I used a power saw.
2. Though I'm sure other people have made something similar,
I haven't seen it, yet.
Sometimes I forget my brain is capable of creating new (to me) things.
3. It only took about an hour.

It's bigger than the picture looks (about 3-4 ft tall),
but I won't hang it until next week.
I'm a one holiday at a time kind of girl.

Okay, that's all.
Enjoy your weekends!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Photo Booth Fun


nose twirl:



we're so crazy around here.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Thank you!

I am blown away by how many sweet responses I got from this post.
(It's the "holy crap, what happened to my sweet little girl" post from earlier this week.)

Thank you,
and Chrissy

Mamas I've met,
mamas I haven't...yet.
All amazing women.

I felt encouraged, supported, loved, and understood.
Thank you for reigning me back in.
Thank you for being my voice of reason.

Update: no new teeth (still just the 3) and still no illness.
I thought for SURE we'd see one of those on Wednesday.

Confession: my heart rate rises each time she has a tantrum now.
She showed us what she's capable of Tuesday night.
Thankfully, there hasn't been any even close to that degree since then.

And since I don't typically do picture-less posts:
Even though this is me,
I'm certain Alice gets her feistiness from the Bolton side. :)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

10 on 10











Finding the beauty in the ordinary moments.