Sunday, May 31, 2015

I can't even think of a title...

I honestly can't think of a title for this post.  All I can think is, "Where did the week go?!"  I promise this is not another backslide into Ashley-never-blogs-ville, it's just that this past week was odd with the long Memorial Day weekend, and then my mom (Didi) and Papa Dave were in town from Tuesday until Friday.  Come to think of it, this was the first weekend in a while that was normal(ish).

Anyway, let me back up.  Chet and Sydney went camping Memorial Day weekend with other dads and children from our street.  There were five dads and eleven children:

Super dads.  One dad had all four of his kids with him (his youngest is about 9 months younger than Lorelei).  Chet and I debated for months before this trip whether or not we should send Lorelei camping too, and in the end we didn't.  It was the right decision.  Chet and Sydney had an amazing time, and Lorelei helped me take care of Bubby.

Here are a few more pictures from the weekend (all random and out of order, because...yeah, time):
Just before leaving the neighborhood

They camped at a naval air station, so there was a museum and some (fake) simulators

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

...Bubby ran around pantless.  (But what a gentleman to volunteer his vacuuming services!)  I promise I put pants on him before we went to the park, but he ended up soiling himself, and it was better for all parties involved to not put the shorts back on him.  But that means we were that family at the park.  Goodbye, pride.

(Lorelei was with us too, but these are pretty much the only two pictures I took the entire weekend.)

I didn't do my usual Mary Kay Monday blog post, because it didn't seem right to do so on Memorial Day.

Like I said, Didi and Papa Dave arrived in town on Tuesday, so we had tons of fun with them until they left on Friday.  The problem with having people in town who are huge helps is that by the time they leave you have forgotten how to wash dishes and care for your own children (because they've been doing the majority of that for you).

On Thursday my friend Emily (from Gulfport!) and her family were also visiting this area, and Sydney and I met them at the zoo.
Maggie Jo and Sydney Jo reunited
One thing I love about being a military family: you meet tons of people who become dear friends, and they remain dear friends.  And then when your paths cross again, even if just for a few hours, you are able to pick right back up where you left off.

I said this weekend was normal-ish, in that we didn't have company in town, but it was our annual neighborhood block party, so there was more fun than usual to be had:

And, finally, Chet and I attended an orchestra concert tonight at our church (the kids were there too, but went to child care).  It was such a beautiful concert.  Dan Goeller flew in from Sioux Falls, South Dakota to direct the combined orchestra (it was our own church's orchestra, and three others from churches in our area).  I had no idea who Dan Goeller was before this evening, but it was amazing, and I highly recommend listening to some of the music on his site.

I hope you had a GREAT weekend!

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Tiny Dancer

Happy Sunday!

I hope you're all enjoying this Memorial Day weekend.  The weather is gorgeous here in northern VA (although I think it may get a little hot today and tomorrow).  Chet and Sydney went camping, along with other dads/children from our street, so Lorelei, Bubby, and I are flying solo (trio?) until Monday.  We'll head to church later this morning, and then who knows after that!

I got Sydney's dance picture in yesterday, so I just wanted to post that really quickly.  Her dance studio is so organized.  On picture day we were told to show up at a certain time.  At exactly that time all of the little girls in her class filed into the studio while the parents waited in the waiting room.  Within 10 minutes, the girls were filing out -- in that time they took both the group picture AND all of the individual pictures!  Whoever's in charge should write a time management book -- it would be a best seller.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Pre-K Graduation

Man alive this week has gotten away from me!  How is it already Memorial Day weekend?!  I still need to post about last Memorial Day weekend!  (Seriously, I do -- I always do this, too.  That is, I mean to post about blog-able Memorial Weekend activities, and then tell you about them the following year.  I know it's weird/lazy.)

Yesterday afternoon was Sydney's Pre-K graduation.  It was a very short, sweet ceremony, sans cap-and-gown (am I a bad person if I say I'm glad about that?).  The iPhone pictures I captured were terrible, but I'll share them with you anyway (and I need to check Chet's phone to see if he got any good ones).

Waiting for the festivities to begin.  Lorelei was well-behaved (thanks to a cake-decorating game app on Chet's phone -- please don't judge, we had to get her up prematurely from a nap for this little shindig, and she was on the verge of being a monster).  Ford, on the other hand, was a monster for the ceremony.  Not in a bad baby sort of way, but in a too loud, excited baby sort of way.  Distracting, nonetheless.

After the processional, about to sit in their chairs at the front of the church (Syd is in the big white bow, and one of her teachers is to her left):

Recessional (I told you I had no good pictures!  Why am I even posting these?!):

Greeting Lorelei:

Reception (Bubby wants something, hence the pointy finger):

Syd's bestie/next-door-neighbor to Syd's left:

Our girl:

Hey, look, I was able to upload a video!  Here's one of the songs they sang at the ceremony.  It's hard to hear the actual words, but you can tell that Syd is very serious about being precise with hand motions (just clapping in this case, but she always love any type of hand motion), and stopping when it's another class's turn to sing its part of the song.  (She had a church choir concert last Sunday evening, and there was a song where the girls sang one part and the boys sang another -- Syd kept shooting their girl to her left annoyed looks because the little girl sang the entire song.  She's the Precision Police, people...or is it the Accuracy Police?):

I hope you have a lovely (and short, if you're working today) Friday!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Mary Kay: Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover

Last Thursday I had my debut Mary Kay party -- and it was a success!  Thankfully, an experienced Mary Kay consultant helped/did the majority of the skin care presentation, and it was great to watch and learn from her.  I invited my neighbors, and one mom from Lorelei's gymnastics, and we had a ball.

This week I'm going to feature one of my favorite Mary Kay products, and one of the first Mary Kay products I ever used: Oil Free Eye Makeup Remover!  I've used a few different brands of eye makeup remover (not ALL of them, but several, and that includes solutions and wipes), and this one is by far my favorite.

Here's what you need to know:

  • It gently removes all types of eye makeup, including waterproof.
  • It does not leave skin feeling greasy (I think this is why it's my favorite!).
  • It's hypoallergenic.
Just shake until blended (you can see the separation of solution in the picture above -- I can elaborate on this if you're interested!), apply to a cotton ball or pad, and gently wipe away eye makeup.

This bottle will last you approximately 4 months, and costs $15 (by the way, my customers always get free shipping!).

If you're interested in the Oil Free Eye Makeup Remover, or any other Mary Kay products, you can e-mail me at, or visit my website at  You can also just comment on this blog post!

Have a fabulous Monday!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Crazy May

I always forget what a busy time of year May is until it is upon me.  And I know our family is much less busy than others (I'm thinking families with school-aged kids).  Anyway, this past week was the first week we were back to normal, after Papa John visiting and Chet going back to work after his week of vacation.  It was strange but good to get back into the swing of things.

In addition to Mother's Day and Memorial Day, May also brings (for us) my mom's birthday and three nephews' birthdays (only one of whom will get his birthday gift on time, because sometimes I fail to plan).  This particular May Sydney will "graduate" from Pre-K (this coming Thursday), and we're knocking out her dance recital this weekend.  Sydney's church choir concert is tonight also.  Below are some snapshots of what else we've been up to.

The kids make the best gifts at their school.  Here are my Mother's Day presents (L's is the ceramic hand print, Syd's is the drawing):

Bubby is cute.  That is all.

Speaking of Bubby, the other day he though a 45-minute nap was sufficient (it wasn't -- he usually sleeps 2-3 hours), and he was super upset that I left him in his crib to cry for a while.  But he rebounded when I let him sit with Sydney in the armchair while she watched TV.  (He rarely gets to sit on the chair or couch because, you know, kids his age like to dive headfirst off such things.)

Sydney at her last dance class on Friday (WOO HOO!  Er, I mean, I'm so sad that we get a break from ballet this summer):

After dance on Friday we ran by Rack Room shoes to exchange YET AGAIN a pair of sandals I thought Lorelei would find acceptable (who knew she was such a shoe diva?!), and I snapped this picture headed back to the car.  Sydney looks like one of the Jolie-Pitt children being dragged along:

We were all hungry and ready for dinner after our little trip into town (it was 4:45 p.m.), so we ate early and then thought, "Huh, now what?"  So we loaded the kids into strollers and walked across the highway (don't worry, there's a pedestrian bridge!) for some frozen yogurt.  Mind you, our neighborhood is extremely hilly, and it was a mile each way, so Chet and I got a great workout while the kids simply sat and enjoyed the scenery, loaded up on sugar, then sat again on the way home (and begged us to "run!").  Bubby fell asleep on the way over.

And, finally, here are some dance rehearsal pictures.  The dress rehearsal was yesterday morning, and I volunteered to be one of the "room moms," which just means that I make sure the eight little girls in Syd's class don't tear up their costumes or wander off (Syd's class was easy to watch -- I felt sorry for the room moms of the 3-year old classes).  I'm posting these now, because I'm not sure I'll have the opportunity to take as many pictures this morning, at the actual recital (yes, the recital is on a Sunday morning -- that's a whole 'nother topic).

Beading bracelets and necklaces while they wait for their number (the other room mom is a genius; all I brought was my purse):

These little girls also go to Syd's preschool (Syd looks like a giant next to them -- they're all the same age!):

She requested I take this picture:

You can't really tell, but they're all holding hands while they walk to the stage:

Syd is in the second row, second from the right:
She said later, as we were walking to the car from the high school (where the recital is being held), "I LOVE dancing on stage!  It's so much more fun than dancing in class!"  Lawdy...

The kids played in the pool yesterday evening.  Bubby was soaking wet (in his clothes -- apparently we were too lazy to change him into an actual bathing suit and swim diaper), and contemplative:

That's all!  I hope you've had a lovely weekend, and have a glorious Sunday!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Some Quotes on a Wednesday

Why not kick off Wednesday with some crazy kid quotes?

I've been keeping a list for a while now, so some of these are quite old.

Lorelei: "I'm going to turn down the music on Bubby's fang (thing), because it's too loud and makes his ears cry." (I think she was talking about a bouncy seat or something.  See, I told you some of these quotes were old!)

Syd: "How did you get a zipper on your belly?" (In reference to having a baby -- I never mentioned a zipper.)

Lorelei (while putting together a puzzle): "Can you help me finish this puzzle?"
Me: "Sure!"
(I start to put a puzzle piece in its proper place.)
Lorelei: "No, that's my job!  This puzzle is too tricky for you!"

(I left a pint of strawberries on the kitchen table and Lorelei ate 90% of them without permission.)
Sydney (whining): "I want more strawberries too!"
Me: "No, Lorelei had too many strawberries and will probably be throwing up later."  (Fear-based parenting can be very effective.)
Lorelei (cheerfully): "You can't have any more strawberries, Sydney, because I ate too many and am going to throw up!"
(Fear-based parenting fail.)

Lorelei: "When I grow up and you jump on my bed, can I scream at you?"
(For the record, I do not scream, Miss Lorelei.  'Holler' is a better description.)

Lorelei: "My tummy hurts."
Me: "Do you want some water?"
Lorelei: "No...I want coffee."

Lorelei: "Look, a rocket ship!" (It was a water tower.)

(Sydney, discussing what she wants for Christmas.)
Me: "Why do we celebrate Christmas?"
Sydney: "Because it's Jesus' birthday."
Lorelei: "Who is Jesus?"
Me: "Jesus is God's son."
Lorelei: "'Jesus is God's son' is right, Mommy."

We got out of the car at church I noticed a huge scratch under Lorelei's eye (she was probably rubbing her face and accidentally scratched herself).
Me: "Lorelei, what happened to your face?!  You scratched the fire out of it!"
Lorelei: "It wasn't fire, Mommy, it was Kojak."
(Kojak is Didi and Papa Dave's dog, who we last saw in August.  This was February.)

(While playing the card game "Go Fish")
Lorelei: "Do you have any Anna cards?" (this was the "Frozen" version of "Go Fish")
Sydney: "No -- go fish!"
Sydney: "Do you have any Elsa cards?"
Lorelei: "No goldfish!"

Sydney: "What kind of earrings are those, Mommy?"
Me: "They're called diamonds."
Sydney: "Those aren't diamonds, they're circles!"

(While looking at pictures on Papa John's phone)
Lorelei: "Who is that?"
Papa John: That's my brother Ryan."
Lorelei (squeals): "Ooh, that's a nice name!"

(Lorelei doesn't always say the letter "L" correctly, and never says "R," but she says some version of the following phrase quite often)
Lorelei: "I'm weewy, weewy sewious, Mommy.  I'm not choking you!"
(Translation: "I'm really, really serious, Mommy!  I'm not joking you!")

These ragamuffins (especially Lorelei right now) definitely keep us laughing!  (Well, when we're not screaming hollering.)

(Apparently, our children spend the majority of their time eating ice cream and cookies.)