Sunday, April 29, 2012

Bigfoot Party

The party was a success.  Who knew Big Foot had no many opportunities?

The cake was delicious, but hideous.  I found a "yeti" toy to add to it, but my writing proved less than successful.

Lots of friends, new and old.

Kids grabbed Bigfoot hunting water to set out in search of him.

Also, magnifying glasses.  Once they found their print (the flour/salt/water combo commonly used for hand prints.......cut out into Bigfoot shapes), they were awarded with an official Bigfoot Hunter's License.

There were Bigfoot crafts.........where kids dressed up Bigfoot in either pajamas or a tropical shirt. We live in California, folks.  It makes sense.

The hunt was on.

Cake time!  Our dapper little guy was thrilled.

Love the little Jackie smile.


The crew.

Sweet baby Bay and Becca.

It was a Bigfoot fiesta.  No sightings, but we had a ton of fun.

Here's to 6 year old Jackie!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Things That Are Bothering Me

I really could write this list on a daily basis, but I spare you so as not to lose my readership (all 4 of you).

The following things are annoying me.

1.  People who don't put their toilet lids down.  A toilet seat should only ever be up when in use.  Period.

2.  People who think that a Kindergartner wearing a bow tie is ridiculous.  Don't worry about it. 

3.  Small children who take 30 minutes changing out of their pajamas and into school clothes.

4.  Pretty much anyone who is in the store, anywhere near me, while I'm shopping at Walmart.

5.  Said people - of Walmart - who haggle over pricing and stall my line.  Everyone knows that their prices are always screwed up.  Just grab the crap you need and hope for the best.

6.  Walmart, in general.

7.  Kindergartners who have homework - approximately 4 pages plus 2 reading assignments - every day of the week, including weekends.  And, major holidays including Easter & Christmas. 

8.  Bloggers who take this whole blogging thing too seriously.

9. The price of gas in California.

10.  Crazy couponers.  This disgust is not so much driven by negativity, but instead jealousy.  Walking away with $200 worth of groceries for $9 is AWESOME.  I just wonder if they actually find the time to eat or use what they buy.  I picture them in a dark basement with a basket of scissors madly snipping away, all the while, kids are upstairs eat Ho Hos and drinking Red Bull (because it was on sale, of course).

11.  Inappropriate bumper stickers.  Why?  Really, people, why?  Explaining such to a curious 11 year old is not fun.

12.  All the blogger books out these days.  Matt Logelin and Nie Nie?  Love.  The rest?  No fanks.  Either way, I did not see my book on the shelves of Target.  Yes, that is because it hasn't been written.  Maybe I should stop typing out this pointless drivel and get started.  My memoir is going to make The Glass Castle look like a candy coated, music filled, Mary Poppins themed walk in the park.

13.  The fact that I still miss Batman.  And, that I refer to Finn as Batman constantly. 

14.  The state of California.  $320 + driving school = ticket obsolete.  I'd think twice before crossing that line to get into the turn lane, folks.

I think that's enough for now! 

I've got to help Jack finish reading War & Peace before school.

Laters, baby.

Friday, April 20, 2012


Pretty random today.

Mrs. Becca, the little punks' former preschool teacher, had a bebe recently.

Oh, she's so, so tiny.

8 pounds here.  She's 3 weeks old.  Her name is Bay.  Love that.

McNamara girls joined us for a visit and to snuggle with Bay.

Mrs. Becca was Lainey, Jack and Rylee's first teacher.  Big part of their lives!  We will always remember her.

Little punkin has to wear the harness due to her position while being breech.  Might be off soon......or later......time will tell.

Carter adored her, as he does all babies.  I've never seen an 11 year old boy with such a love for little ones.  He has such a big heart.

You know Lainey loved her.  It was such a fun visit.  Hoping to have them back next week for dinner.  I failed to get a picture of Ricky.......Becca's husband......they are the cutest couple.

Been meaning to post about the crayon art we did a few weeks ago.  From Pinterest, of course.

A few tips:

Wear an old shirt/pants.  The wax splatters.

Cover the ground or table under you.  It's messier than you'd think.

Cheaper crayons seemed to work better than Crayola. 

We used tacky glue to attach the crayons to flat canvas and then a hair dryer to melt the wax.  This is one of the 3 pieces we created.  Lots of fun and way easier than I had anticipated!

I recently went through the house to remove the children's artwork that they so graciously adorn our walls with.

I simply can't take this one down, though.  Look at all the effort he put into the train and then attached his photo in the "conductor's" seat.

I love that kid.

Things have been stressful around the Starnes casa lately.  More on that eventually.

My sweet neighbor brought me this jasmine plant to cheer me up.

She is such a gem.  I don't see how people make it through life without good friends.
Finn has been playing dress up lately.

Do you think this Rapunzel dress makes her look fat?

Been getting lots of snuggles lately, too.

Had Open House recently.  Jackie was all too proud to show off his classroom and playground.

Carter?  Less enthused.  In all fairness, he had a slight fever.  Poor guy.  Didn't stop him from begging me to play soccer, of course.  To which, I declined.

Bow ties are the newest trend.  Did you know?

Aunt Caroline sent Jack 15 of these beauties.

In 3 days, he's managed to wear each of them.

To school.

He's sharing them, too.

Carter even wore one to school.  In jest, of course, but he did it. 

All day. 

Today, he (Carter) wore one again and brought one for his best friend to wear.

Take notes, people!  It's catching on!

Lots ahead:

*Beach day with McNamaras tomorrow.

*Bigfoot party is coming together weekend is the big day!

*Planting seeds with the little ones.

*Ballet and tap practice - recital isn't far away!

*Summer activities need to be scheduled:  soccer for Jack and surf camp for Carter.

Hope yall have a good weekend!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Too Much?

Jack's 6th birthday is right around the corner and I've pretty much sacrificed laundry, house cleaning, hygiene and meals to prepare for it.  Don't judge.  These parties are winding down.  Carter is too cool for big celebrations and prefers a simple soccer game, In-N-Out and a sleepover.  Easy peasy.  My days of color coordinated plates and party favors are treasured right now.

Bigfoot is the theme.  I've gathered a ridiculous amount of Bigfoot material (who knew?), including labels for their "Bigfoot Hunting Water" that they'll take into the back yard for a hunt.  They'll find tracks and other fun stuff while en route. 

Here's where I might have de-railed:

I've searched for and located a Bigfoot (read: gorilla) suit.  I would like to have Carter make a quick run by beyond our iron fence as the kids are searching.  In the costume.  A true "Bigfoot sighting". 

Cool, yes?

Blake thinks I've lost it.  He thinks we'll have the police at our door, neighbors calling TV shows and kids screaming bloody murder.  We'll have a range of yes, the 2 year olds must be taken into consideration.


Too much?

Friday, April 13, 2012


One of the perks of moving across the country is the opportunity to meet all sorts of friends.  We have made very special connections in every place we've lived......with friends and family.......and cherish the time spent with so many important people in our lives.

With that happiness comes the difficult part of saying goodbye.  It's usually us moving and saying goodbye.....but in this case, the McNamaras are off to Sacramento in a few weeks.  We've done everything we can by begging them to stay......even offering the gazebo for shelter! 

(I kid.  Unless they'd do it.)

They have family in the area, so I know they'll visit.  And, we plan to do the same.  But, it's the day-to-day contact that I'll miss the most.  Car pooling, ballet, sneaking kids into Legoland, birthday partes, Disneyland, family visits and more. 

Even Costco trips with 5 kids.  I'll miss that, too, Allison!
I'm drawing on my history with Jillian for strength......we've become even closer, oddly enough, with the miles put between us.  I know the same will be for Allison and me.

She brought me this book recently.  Tears were flowing.  We all laughed as we read through it.  Thought I would share: 

I will likely be a mess over the next several weeks.  Please just pretend like it's the norm (as if it isn't!) and humor me. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Easter Recap

Easter summary.  I'll keep my copy brief and to the point.  I know how brutal holiday summaries can be.

First, please behold perhaps the only image ever in the history of history that all 3 Starnes children are looking at the camera and smiling.  It's at the printer now, slated for a 16"x20" canvas, dipped in gold and then hung above the fireplace.  Year round.

Egg dying with the McNamaras.  Slated to move away in just weeks.  I'm heartbroken.  More on that later.

These girlies are crazy as ever.

Jack got fancy for the festivities.

What?  Most 5 year olds don't dye eggs in a suit?

We relaxed on the patio and enjoyed the beautiful weather.

Love this girl.

We woke to hunt eggs.  The usual routine.

Blake shuddered at the thought of me posting this picture.

Lainey's wearing size 12 Month pj pants. 

Now, they look like shorts.

Later that afternoon, we hit the beach.

Lainey never sacrifices function for fashion.

Heals for the beach!


Jack has started balancing rocks.

Woo hoo! 

No more savings for college.  This kid has skillz.

We walked the pier to dinner.

Love the view.

Off to wrangle kids.  Beautiful day in Southern California.

Kids are scattered all over the place with Ballet/Tap, Scrabble Club and whatever Jack comes up with for the rest of the day.

Laters, baby!