Monday, June 10, 2013

a quick trip to vegas....

 so - we took a quicker than expected trip to Vegas last weekend.

Kurt was heading there for work, and convinced Liam and I to join him, so we got out of school a bit early and headed to the airport on a Thursday Evening. 
Unfortunately, we missed the Cornerstone Open House on Friday Night... look at how cute they decorated. Love the chalk art!


But we got to see all of Liam's great art on Monday morning... so that was ok.

Liam of course did great on the plane, and the LOOOOOONG cab ride and was happy to see Daddy when we arrived at our hotel The Aria. We stayed in the Sky Suites - the beds were HEAVEN.  Liam did not want to get out - and I didn't make him... he looked pretty darn cute all comfy-cozy in that bed!

Kurt worked on Friday, and I was working remotely - but wanted to take a few hours to have some fun with the little man in the big city.  He really wanted to go see the Statue of Liberty at New York New York... so we did, and we went to the Coney Island arcade and kicked my but at Air Hockey.  We bought Magic Handcuffs at the magic store and met "Bumble Bee" from the Transformers. We ate junk food and braved the triple digit heat to walk along Las Vegas BLVD together.  We bought new sunglasses (bright orange) and poker chips from the big Harley Davidson Store...this was our first time in Vegas w/ Liam, a total departure from trips in the past! But so fun.  Later in the afternoon, Liam and I hit the pool to cool off, and then spend the afternoon in THAT BED waiting for Daddy to get home from his business meeting.

Kurt arrived safely to the hotel and we had an 8:00 dinner reservation at the Rainforest Cafe. Liam's first time - he LOVED it... note to self - go back soon! He really wanted this special compass from the Rainforest Cafe gift shop and I told him he had already gotten too many gifts for one day - and that if he still wanted that in the morning, we would go back.....(little did I know what was coming next).

The awesome trip ended abruptly when we got a late night frantic call from Kurts mom... her beloved 11 year old Miniature Schnauzer "Buttons" was killed by a coyote... at OUR HOUSE.... while she was staying there watching OUR DOGS... :( what a buzz kill.  So - we changed our flights and headed out first thing Saturday a.m.  But, as Liam has been telling me lately "Mama, sometimes that's just how life is", and I guess he's right.

It's now 10 days later, and Kurt's mom just left our house for the first time... returning to her own... very quiet, very empty house.  Without her sweet companion.  My heart is still breaking for her.

I learned a lot about Liam during this ordeal.  He is definitely an old soul.  When he found out about Buttons, he cried and cried, saying that he "really loved that little dog"... and that he is "so sad for Grammy M... she lost her best friend, and that must be terrible."  He also said that he wouldn't ask for anything "until Grammy M stopped crying.".... pretty profound statements from a 4 year old.  He has been so great and sweet and ridiculously mature. We told him the truth about how Buttons died, and somehow he "gets it". He understands... I don't know how.  

My sweet Liam.... you are wise beyond your years my little love.

* p.s. I got that Compass for him from the Rainforest Cafe in Costa Mesa after a business meeting I had in Irvine last week... how could I not... best 7.99 I've spent all month.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Memorial Day 2013

I love a long weekend like nobody's business, and this weekend was a little extra long because we took a half day on Friday, and partied right on through to late Monday evening.

We spent a lot of time in the pool on Saturday, and didn't do too much of anything - then on Sunday we went to a wonderful super hero b-day party at the Splash Pad (Memorial Day is opening weekend there.. I'm sure we'll be spending our fair share of time there this summer!)

Monday was pool party day - we kept it mellow and not too big - we kept the menu easy and inexpensive with hot dogs being the main attraction... that is until this amazing fruit shark showed up!  In the age of Pinterest... you never know what will inspire creativity. Thanks Chris and Wendy for bringing this awesome creation! Everybody just loved it!

We were so happy that the Murphy's came! I wish I would have gotten a better photo of this cute family..  I am going to have to take advantage of the fact their pool is under construction this summer and ask them to come over more often for a swim!

The kids jumped from jacuzzi to pool, and engaged in a friendly aqua-zooka battle.

Sweet Andrew... look at the determination on his face.!

The All-American Hot Dog Bar! (Thank you Pinterest for the idea, and Hostess with the Mostess blog for the free printables)

Nothin' like a little hot dog lunch date w/ your best girl.

 Since we are up to our ears in lemons - Todd made AMAZING lemon bars, and I made some lemon cupcakes. A perfect ending to the long weekend.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


 The weekend that I had been saving for, waiting for, wanting to arrive... finally did! And of course - did NOT disappoint!

It was so good - we gave it a hashtag of its own "#pdxmeetslax" and documented it on instagram. 

My two Portland besties from Portland - Kerry and Mini-Carey (yes, that's right... I guess it was a popular name in the mid-seventies) flew up... and my bestie who is living up in Ventura - Paisley, and I took a couple of days off so that we could have some uninterrupted GIRL TIME!

Pais headed down mid-afternoon on Thursday (somehow free time mid-week is so much more decadent than on the weekend... it's like you are "Getting Away with something".  We hopped in the car, stopped by the store to pick up some wine (read: a CASE of wine), and proceeded to LAX to pick up our cute lady friends.

We all jumped in after hugs and comments on how great each other looked (i DO have some gorgeous friends!) and drove up the PCH through Venice, Santa Monica, and Malibu... it was a lovely day - but brisk and windy as we discovered when we stopped at Zuma 10 to enjoy a bottle of wine on the beach.  BUT... you don't get to hang out on the beach and drink wine with your besties, on a THURSDAY afternoon every day - so we braved the wind and sand in our wine, until we finished every last drop.

Pais and I made "surprise" reservations for the group at the Malibu Cafe.  I had been a few weeks prior, and the only thought in my head was "I HAVE TO TAKE THE GIRLS HERE". I was so stoked that they enjoyed it as much as I knew they would.  Poor Mini, the generous soul that she is wanted to pick up the bill... she didn't realize it would be upwards of $400.00! (EEK) I still owe her some cash.. need to get that in the mail.  Our meal was amazing, and Paisley picked out a delicious bottle of wine (Justin Cab). We headed back to the Menslage Maison for some Limabean time, and maybe a splash more wine... maybe :)  We drank and chatted and played with Liam.  Mini sat out by the jacuzzi while he swam and some vicious bug attacked her booty... poor girl, she was tore up and swollen, sweet Kurt went to the store to get Benadryl for her. (thanks hubby).  By the time she woke up it was all good (thank god).

Next day = SPA DAY!
We started the day w/ a green smoothie and an invigorating walk followed by quick showers and a trip tot he Westlake Village Four Seasons Resort for treatments and lunch.  Perfect as always!

Post Spa - it was time to head up to Ventura to Paisley's amazing beach house (aka "the Forest project") which we ALL love. It is the perfect zen retreat, the kind of place that if you lived there ... you wouldn't want to leave unless you absolutely had to.  Thanks Paisley for sharing it with us.  The night of course was perfect... Thai Food, Fire Pit, Laughing until our faces hurt and we begged each other to STOP.
Next morning Paisley took us on the "loop" whch was a roughly 3 mile hike up up and away where each view is more breathtaking than the one before.  Up the hills over the Ventura coast line in a trail and nature conservancy project. Post hike - it was back to Agoura for shopping, lunch, poolside, wine... and then finally the sad drive back to the airport.  

We packed a lot into 2 short days, and my love, blessing, and friendship tank is full again.
But I still can't wait for the next time.  

The windy stop at Zuma

Lifetime friends breaking bread at the M. Cafe 

Seriously, could you get prettier friends?

at the WLV Four Seasons
Poolside healthy lunch at WLV Four Seasons 

How bout them cabbage?

The view from the Forest Project

Lunch at the Rabbit Hole Cafe in Agoura 

Below is our instagram journey #pdxmeetslax - we're teenagers.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

How quickly we forget

So - I've noticeably taken a very extended break from blogging.  I've been posting pics and blurbs on Facebook and Insta... but have not taken the time to document precious moments and daily blessings. It wasn't until I recently stumbled upon an old blog post of mine that I was reminded just how memories fade.  I had forgotten things... things that happened just three years ago.  Things that Liam said, and did. I had forgotten what his sweet 9 month old giggle sounded like, and forgot just how attached he had been to his beloved TAR until just 5 months ago.  I had forgotten how one summer we watched the movie CARS!  I had forgotten how little he was when we brought him home, how much fun we had at our "build your own pizza party", and how sad i was when baby Liam got sick for the first time at just three months old. I forgot how awful that split pea green soup colored shiny paint looked on my walls (thank god we changed that) and most heart breaking, I forgot that I used to write a simple note to my sweet Liam every month explaining what he had learned that was new, documenting any milestones such as rolling over, first words (cool), things that cracked us up (like crackers),  and how much more I fall in love with him every day.

Well, things still crack us up - just yesterday Liam was quoting the movie "Wreck it Ralph"  - he quoted Sangeve during the session in the BAD-ANON meeting - he said "just because I'm bad guy... does not mean I'm bad guyy!" It was so funny - and his delivery was spot on... we were rolling, and I think he was a little surprised by how much he made us laugh. Maybe a future comedian.

He is still reaching milestones and growing everyday.  He weighs 42+ lbs (I can't keep up) and I swear sometimes he wakes up taller in the morning than he was when I put him to bed the night before. I just had to buy him all new pants and shoes because overnight - his were all too small.

He still melts my heart - mostly on a daily basis.  He is a kiss-aholic, and I'm ok with that.  I get upwards of 30 kisses at school drop-off, and his famous last words are "just one more hug mama". How can I resist?

So... this being said... I WANT TO REMEMBER all of the moments. So, I am re-committing to blogging. Not every day... but at least once a week, and of course on the special noteworthy days.  I am trying hard to "stop the glorification of BUSY" and to take the time to do this simple task - because it's important. I also want HIM to be able to read his story someday and to know how much I have loved him every single day... even before he was born.  As he gets older his brain will be filled with homework, studies, GIRLS, and regular kid and teenager stuff which surely will take the place in his brain where the small details once were - and I want him to have a resource to refer to when he needs a boost, a laugh, a  sweet memory of a simple family dinner or a summer garden planting - a spur of the moment getaway, and the song he sang to me for mother's day 2013 that made his mama cry. 

I want to remember this life... the NOW. Because soon... it will all be history.  I want this story to be His story... our family story. 

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Merry Christmas 2012

Just a few snaps from our Christmas at home :)
SO thankful for such a wonderful  holiday filled with love and family.

Liam by the lovely tree at chruch

Waiting for Santa is hard work

Acey just LOVED Santa!

Telling Santa What he wanted for Christmas (A FIRE HOUSE)



Thank you Santa!

This year he finally gave up his beloved TAR for Santa to give to the new babies.

A letter from Santa

The stockings were filled!

Christmas moon!


Ace Face

Controlling the train from Grammy M

Gift of choice - cardboard.

Christmas = LOVE

The Chandelier from Kurt's Childhood home... 

A perfect ending to a wonderful day. Merry Christmas 2012.

Cheers to a wonderful 2013