Thursday, September 30, 2010

September Family Photo: The Dunes

It's the last day of September. That means it's time for our Monthly Family Photo. This one was actually taken IN September. And not on the last day either. That's progress, baby.

You can't tell from the picture, but we're behind our house on the sand dunes. The same dunes where the ballerinas went sledding during that big winter storm back in January.

September flew by! Once school started we hit the ground running and haven't stopped. Overall, September was a good month.

LB earned a sticker for good behavior every day this month. Except today. September 30th. The last day of the month. Come on, girl! Really? You couldn't hold it together just ONE more day? You couldn't go ONE month without screwing up? There may be many more noon nips in my future if this keeps up.

I started exercising again this month. A friend asked me all last year to try out her gym. With LB only in school until 11:10am last year, I could never make it work. I finally tried it this month. It's hard core. I'm still alive though. I officially joined today. I'll share more about that later.

And finally, after 10 years, I now have more than three hours of "time-off" from the ballerinas during the days. TEN YEARS!

Now that both ballerinas are in school full-time, I thought I'd be able to take some classes. Explore some new interests. Start figuring out what I'm going to be when I grow up. What have I discovered? The classes and things I want to do are all offered at night. When I can't go. All this waiting and anticipating and I'm coming up empty-handed. What a let down. 

What am I supposed to do now? Cook? Clean? I'm not really qualified to do those things. I'd need to take some classes. But I'm sure those classes are only offered at night too. When I can't go. What a relief let down.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

We Are Drinking a Beer at Noon on Tuesday

I woke up this morning channeling my inner Martha. I was pumped and ready to rock. My day started off with a little sewing, a little baking and a new chili recipe. I probably would have painted my bedroom, refinished a dresser and organized all the junk drawers in the house, but the chili recipe called for half a cup of...

which is about 1/3 of a bottle. I couldn't let the other 2/3 of that bottle go to waste. Now could I?  

Of course not. 

Now it only takes me about 1/3 of a bottle to catch a buzz. I had 2/3. 

I felt goooood. BSD would have totally gotten some had he been home.

I can see why some moms make a habit of this. Sure would make doing the laundry a lot more fun. 

But I didn't do any laundry today. And I didn't paint my bedroom. Or refinish that dresser. Or organize any junk drawers. 

I did do a little sewing though. 

And I did bake some chocolate chip muffins.

And I did make a damn good pot of chili.

So maybe drinking a beer at noon on Tuesday Wednesday isn't such a bad idea after all?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Five Guys

Living in San Diego our favorite fast food burger joint, by a landslide, was In-N-Out Burgers. It seemed that wherever there was a Home Depot, there was an In-N-Out. We spent a lot of time fixing up our old 1930's English Tudor cottage when we lived there. Which means we spent a lot of time at Home Depot. Which means we ate a lot of In-N-Out burgers.

Living in Virginia, there is no In-N-Out. Our arteries were happy about this. Our taste buds were not. But then, along came Five Guys.

Five Guys is fast, fresh and fun. The burgers are huge and made with anything and everything you want on them. If you don't want to be served a whole cow on a bun you have to order the "Little Burger." BSD simply cannot bring himself to do that. He works hard to keep his burly image of himself alive in his mind. So either I order for him or he's forced to choke down a heifer.

The fries are made fresh from unpeeled potatoes. Massive 50 lb bags of spuds line the walls of the restaurant. One order of fries is enough to feed a small African nation. Half the fun is eating them right out of the bag.

While you wait for your order, there are peanuts to snack on. In the beginning, I swear you just threw the shells on the floor. But the floor has been clean the last few times we've been there. Maybe I'm crazy. Maybe I was having flashbacks of drunken college bars because of the 80's music they were playing. Or maybe they decided shell-covered floors was not the look they were going for after all.

Since the Little Ballerina does not eat meat, she mainly munches a few fries, gets her groove on to the loud music, and creates "art" for the bulletin board. Tonight she was humming along to Carry On My Wayward Son as I amazed the ballerinas with my ability to sing every word of this "new" song.

In-N-Out is still our clear favorite. They have killer milkshakes. Five Guys has none. :( But since California is too far for a drive-thru, we'll have to stick with Five Guys for now.

Oh, and if you want to be treated like royalty at a fast food joint, just pull out your camera and start taking pictures of their restaurant. The employees will think you're a mystery shopper and will all come running to wipe tables, sweep the floor, and remove your trash. And you'll be profusely thanked as you walk out the door. You'll feel like a rock star. Even if you don't have an extensive knowledge of Kansas lyrics like I do.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Slide Show Sunday: Bake Sale

Just one more ballerina post and I'll shut up. It seems like we're consumed with all things ballet right now though. 

The big ballerina's studio is expanding. Very exciting. With a $135 donation, you can purchase a three foot barre section for the new full stage-sized studio they are building. Big deal, right? It is to the Big Ballerina and her buddies. Because underneath that section of barre they will post a plaque bearing THEIR names on it.

So today the ballerinas held a bake sale. Dressed in full ballet attire. Buns and all. 
(although the heat and humidity was too much for BB's curls to handle.)

 We baked. We posted signs.

We sold lemonade. And the girls hawked their wares...

Until there wasn't a single cupcake left.

Counting the money every 5 minutes was a coveted job.

And two hours later....
Goal Met!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Three Out of Four...

Three out of four. Three quarters. Seventy five percent.
That's how many of these ballerinas got the part. The part they've been looking forward to  since they were first cast as little mice five years ago. The part of a Party Girl. A bigger part than any of them have ever danced in one of the "real" shows.
That means one of them did not get the part. One out of four. One fourth. Twenty five percent. Was heartbroken. It's so painful to watch this happen. The ones who make it feel badly. The one who doesn't feels worse. There are a few awkward days where you fumble over what to say. How to act. How to be a good friend.

But the show must go on.

And it will. Rehearsals have already begun.
The excitement is building. The ballerinas are giddy. Party Girls get to rehearse in dance skirts. With their hair DOWN. Having to wear it up in a bun for every class and rehearsal since they began dancing, this is big stuff. Not only that, but the part requires CURLY hair. 

Do you know any ballerinas with curly hair?
I do!

Congratulations, BB!

Side Note: BB's fourth friend is also in the ballet. She was cast in a different role though.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Slide Show Sunday: Burly Surf Dude

Burly Surf Dude is a silly nickname. But it does make sense. In some ways. 

BSD can really surf.
Plus he makes surfboards too. 

And the boards he makes are pretty rad.

Pretty sweet.

Pretty retro.

And yes. 
Even pretty burly.

BSD made all of the boards in these pictures. Except the paddleboard he's riding in the first photo. He makes custom surfboards as a hobby. His passion is making old skool longboards with custom wooden tail blocks. 

I have to admit. I think he's pretty awesome.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Slide Show Sunday: Nutcracker Auditions

It's only September but we already have visions of Sugar Plums dancing in our heads. Auditions for The Nutcracker were on Saturday. This marks the fifth year that the Big Ballerina will be in the ballet. 

The Little Ballerina wavered back and forth. In the end, she decided she'd rather watch than perform. It would have been her first year. Half of me is sad. The picture-taking, memory-hoarding half. The other half is jumping for joy. The stressed-out carpooling, wondering-if-she'll-decide-the-night-of-the-performance-she-doesn't-want-to-do-it half. *sigh*

So now we sit and wait for the list to be posted. Did BB get the part she desperately wants? The part her three best buddies want? The part the other 25 or so girls her age want? The part only 16 of them can get? We'll find out on Wednesday.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Ten on Ten: September 2010

It's Ten on Ten! I made it. I'm alive. I'm on the road to wellness (with a little help from some massive antibiotics). Whoohoo!

Here's a peek at my day...

Off to the library

  Target Pig Stop

 Just me...Hi!

A whole week of stickers for good behavior

Today's $1 Yard Sale score. BB's been begging for this game. All the pieces are in tact after 25 years!

Visiting BSD at work

Dinner with BSD at work


A little after dinner fishing

LB's reward for a week of good behavior

Hope to see what others were up to today!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

One Down, 179 to Go

So today was the first day of school. Luckily, the prophecy of the whack pair of purple Chucks did not prove to be true. And luckily, we had another pair to wear instead.

The Little Ballerina woke up in a good mood. Put on the outfit she chose the night before. Minus the purple Chucks. And happily posed for a picture holding up one finger to signify first grade. Had she not been happy I'm sure she would have chosen an alternate finger for the picture.

She was even nice to the Big Ballerina.

Quite possibly because BB threatened to tell the principal if she wasn't. Since she's now a narc. And quite proud of it I might add.

LB waited for the bus.

Humored me by posing for another picture.

And off she went to her first FULL day of school.

She returned at the end of the day still smiling. Her behavior book proudly displaying its first sticker of the year. Once inside the door, she stripped off her backpack, her shoes and her socks. She trudged up the 13 stairs to the playroom. And laid down on the couch. 

Five minutes later this is how we found her.

She remained in that position for the next two hours. Boy, it's tiring to be GOOD for 6 1/2 whole hours!

One Down, 179 to Go.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Two Left Feet

The end of Kindergarten was not good for the Little Ballerina. She could not keep it together. Her behavior calendar was filled with quite a bit of yellow and red.  Because of this, I've been dreading the return of school. Is she going to be able to pull herself together this year? 

Over the past two weeks, she's moved from "Don't ever sign me up for school again!" to "I'm excited about going to first grade!" This is major. I am praying that this new found enthusiasm will last.

Tomorrow is the first day of school.

First day of school outfits have been laid out. Lunches have been planned. New school supplies are ready to go. We practiced LB's sight words. And the Big Ballerina read for 30 minutes before bed.

We are ready. 
Or so I thought.
Until I pulled LB's new purple Chucks from their box tonight.
And discovered this...

Oh, Dear God! Are you SERIOUS?!? Is this a sign of things to come?!??! The Little Ballerina really CANNOT afford to start the school year off on the wrong foot!

Friday, September 3, 2010

August Family Photos: The Bike Trail

It's September already. That means I am was supposed to post my Monthly Family Portrait by now. And of course, I didn't get around to packing up the family and doing a fantastic photo shoot like I dream about each month. Things like pneumonia tuberculosis?, BSD returning to work, and oh yeah, laziness got in the way.

But I do have a family picture to share. And it was actually taken in August. Hard to believe, I know. I took it on one of our bike rides. We have an absolutely fantastic bike path right in our neighborhood. It's one of the reasons we bought our house. That and the fact that the beach is right across the street.

The ballerinas favorite part is to ride our bikes along the wooden bridge. Although I'm pretty sure there's a sign posted that the bridge is for foot traffic only. But I've never actually seen the sign. So we ride on it anyway.

We stopped for a rest. And a picture. I wasn't going to use this one because of BSD's unfortunate outfit. Not that we're all in our Sunday best. Not even close. But BSD was trying to work on a tan this summer so he bought himself some wifebeaters. Every time he wore one we gave him crap about it.

"Daddy! Why are you wearing your underwear?"
"BSD! PLEASE put on a real shirt. Unless you plan to start a new career as a NYC cabbie!" 

But he wore them anyway. And laughed at himself along with us. He's a good sport like that.

I think I'll photoshop a massive gold necklace in place of his maori for the picture I finally print out. And I'll send it to the casting director of The Jersey Shore. I'm sure they're looking for some new cast members for next season.