Thursday, June 24, 2010

40 Reasons for 40 Years!

The patriarch of this little family is celebrating a milestone birthday, 40 years old!
In his honor, a reason of the top 40 reasons I love/appreciate/enjoy Dan (in no particular order):

40. He has a perfect nose. I regret that Quincy didn't inherit it.
39. He has a perfect chin. I regret that Quincy didn't inherit it.
38. He has beautiful blue eyes. I am thrilled Quincy inherited them.
37. He is a snappy dresser
36. When he puts on dark sunglasses and asks "Do I look dangerous?"
35. "Write if you get work" and other Dan-ism's
34. His absurd devotion to the Snoqualmie Valley Elk
33. His traditional chili burger breakfast choice
32.  "snick - ers"
31. When we spend hours talking about what we would do if we won the lotto (even though we don't play)
30. Watching "our shows" together while eating ice cream
29. His honesty
28. His compassion and generosity
27. When he sends flowers to me at work for no reason
26. He let's me sleep in on the weekends
25. I rarely ever have to do the laundry
24. I mostly NEVER have to fill my gas tank myself
23. When he cooks scrumptious dinners
22. He looks good in a hat
21. A tremendous love, and ridiculous knowledge of all the old Highways of Washington State
20. His appreciation
19. His patience
18. His excitement about toys, trains and matchbox cars
17. Snuggles :)
16. Those sideburns - 10 years later, I still love 'em
15. Appreciates a wide variety of music
14. We work well together to get things done
13. I still get kinda excited when I see him coming to "visit" me at work
12. His love for Christmas - everything about it
11. His wit and sarcastic sense of humor
10. When he talks to me about sports (as though I understand)
9. His patriotism and respect for the American flag (this was a very recent discovery of mine)
8. When he is affectionate and tender with me
7. Kisses after a clean shave (wink wink)
6. Weekend morning coffee
5. When he bakes blueberry muffins while I am still sleeping in the mornings
4. He is handy around the house
3. He is so smart - he can answer almost all my questions (it's like having a human encyclopedia!)
2. World's best hubby!
1. World's best daddy!

Happy birthday Dan! I love you!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

*tap* *tap* *tap* This thing on?

Anyone out there? Anyone still care about this blog? Team Williams?

Should I bother trying again? :)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Spain Girls Reunion!

So, lucky girl that I am, left Spain 11 years ago with not only an amazing, life-changing experience living in and traveling throughout Europe... but I also left with 4 of the best girlfriends anyone could ask for. We try as much as possible to re-unite as often as we can, but being so scattered across... well, currently, North America, it isn't something we get to do quite often enough. The last time we were all together all at once was in 2003 for Lindsay's wedding. Too long ago!

This last weekend we managed to make it happen again... no weddings required! We all met up in Phoenix, where Jenny currently lives. It was an amazing weekend! I flew in Thursday night, and first spent the evening catching up with my dear high school friend, Erin, who has two adorable little girls (one of which is only 5 weeks old!). After spending some time with Erin, it was time for her to drop me off with Jenny...and the official "Spain Girls Reunion" began! During the weekend we mostly laughed and relaxed, and remembered how lucky we are to have each other!

Here are the stats from the weekend:
50 - beautifully painted toes (and 10 pretty fingers!)

1 - incident of falling down laughing in the hotel hallway

2 - occasions requiring a dash to the bathroom to avoid an "accident"
1 - incident of laughing while drinking a margarita = messy
1 - phone call from the hotel about the noise from our room
3 - hours of shopping (without kids!)

42 - references to a "ballerina/ballerino"
27 - references to a "carabineer"
4 - references to a "best boy"
5 - "Chocolate con tequila" consumed

374 - memories of Spain discussed
562 - photographs taken in Spain looked at

(11 years ago! Our "roadtrip" to Portugal)
15 - shot's taken (German Chocolate Cake shots?! YUM!)
1 - unsuccessful attempt at using broccoli as a tequila shot "chaser"

0 - opportunities to lounge poolside (sad)
0 - calories consumed (it's a rule - calories don't count!)
1 - brief baby visit (with Jenny's adorable little one!)

3 - Awesome hubbies who took over Daddy duties the entire weekend we were away (Thank you Dan, Bob and Jared!)
172,800 - seconds of FUN!

I can't wait until we do it again!

Monday, January 11, 2010

"Blast Off" It's a Rocket Party!

I could not allow a birthday to pass without doing something to celebrate. It's simply not in my nature. (Although, I did temper it just a bit...I will save the big stuff for later)
So, after several conversation's like this -
Me: What kind of birthday party do you want?
Quincy: *Silence*

Me: Do you want a Lightening McQueen Party, or a Monster Truck Party, or a John Deere Party?
Quincy: YES!
I sorta gave up... and did what I wanted to do, which was a Rocket Party. I am sure in the years to come, he will have a very definite idea of what type of party he wants to have. So, for now, mommy had her fun!

Rocket Themed decor:

Conveniently, we have tons of Rocket Stuff already because Quincy's bedroom is Retro-Rocket themed. I just strategically placed a few items from his room around the party area. I strung up some silvery stars from the ceiling (also, conveniently left over Christmas decorations I just didn't pack away) and hung some rockets (that will later be launched... a HIGHLY anticipated event for ALL the Williams' family men) to look like they were flying around space. Quincy helped me decorate by tossing some silver star confetti all over the kitchen island. He did great with it... although, eventually gave up on "scattering" them and left a substantial pile of stars on the table. I think we will be finding stars in the oddest places for weeks.

Do you know that very little "Rocket" themed party supplies exist? Why are mother's everywhere forced into throwing horribly boring, cartoon character parties. Not for me, no sireee.
I did however, find these adorable Straws, and that was the extent of it.

Rocket Themed Games:

Ok, This is where my party may have fallen short, but there were only 4 kids, and I just didn't get too creative with the games. I found some crayola space stickers that they could color, which actually did keep them quiet and entertained for about 10 minutes (which is like eternity). The put the stickers up on some poster board paper with a big moon on it. We then used this poster board to play "Pin the Rocket on the Moon". I realized that "Pin the Tail on the Donkey" is the worlds most versatile game. It can be re-created into just about ANYTHING! It was fun... and amused the kids for another 10 minutes.
Some of the "big" kids got into it too.

Rocket Themed Food:
The best part of a themed party for me, is coming up with creative foods to fit the theme. For this party, it was mostly coming up with fun names for everyday foods. Here was the menu:
Star Dippers and Caramel Sauce = Apples cut into star shapes (at least that was the idea) with dip
Intergalactic Veggies = Veggie Platter
Moon Mac n' Cheese = Um... Mac n' Cheese
Cosmic Chili = Pioneer Woman's Chili!
Space Spuds = Baked Potatoes w/ all the fixin's
Alien Goo Sundaes = Blue Jello Cups
Tang! Of Course!
 Had I been really adventurous, I had planned to make corn dogs and stick them into floral foam or something similar to prop them up as "Rocket Dogs"... but, not for this party. Life goes on... we hope.

And the best part of a kids birthday party?
There are so many Rocket Cakes out there... but this was one I found that I thought was cute and do-able:

Find the tutorial here (Theirs is a little bit prettier... please don't judge me too harshly).

Rocket Party Favors:
Ok, These were what I spent most of my weekend working on. It was fun, and something I had long wanted to do... but, man, it was time consuming!
First you make the cookies... then the black outlines... then let them dry overnight.
Then, fill in the blue... let it dry 5-6 hours. Then, fill in the red... let it dry 5-6 Then write the "Q". Allow the entire cookie to dry at least 24 hours before placing into cellophane baggies. Phew. Add cute little "Rocket" Thank You Tags, and VIOLA! Done!

Fleets of Rockets drying before "launch"

I really liked the sugar cookie recipe I found here. But... royal icing is just not tasty. Pretty, but not tasty (and it was even a Martha recipe!). Any one have a better one?

So, there you have it.  During November and December I really had to stop with all the parties because I was so busy at work... what a bummer, that's the best time of year for parties, too. Now, I am hoping that I can get back in the swing of things, and have fun again! :)

Sunday, January 10, 2010

3 Year Old in the Hizzy....

It is official. Quincy is 3!

We had a fun day to celebrate this eventful milestone birthday (er....)
Dan and I both took a half day at work, and picked him up from daycare at noon. First stop, Red Robin for lunch. They announced his birthday to everyone in the restaurant and sang to him and brought him a ice cream sundae. He was a little bit bashful, but you could tell he really loved the attention (where does he get that from?)

We then drove to one of our favorite neighborhoods in Seattle, Ballard to visit "Golden Gardens". Quincy loves the beach so much (he asks if we can go quite often), so we took him to the closest sandy beach we could think of. It wasn't too cold, and the sun peaked out occasionally. Hey, it is January in Western Washington, we did pretty good. He dug around in the sand for quite awhile, and then... the highlight of short Quincy's life occurred: A Freight Train rumbled past.
Bless his heart, he tried to chase that train with all he could give.
Once the train was out of sight he matter-o-factly declared, "Let's go find that train guys!" (Yes... he calls us "guys")
We played along for a good 90 minutes or so, before he caught on somewhere around Issaquah. He was NOT happy. Quite upset actually, and continued to ask to go see the train throughout the remainder of the evening (and week actually).

I think all-in-all, despite the train incident, he had a wonderful birthday!

I am amazed at what a grown up boy he is. He always surprises us with new things. I can't help but look at him, especially at night when he has finally fallen asleep.... he looks so grown up now. He is not my baby, not even a teensy, tiny bit. I am trying to remind myself that he will continue to get bigger and bigger. At some point in the next several years... he will stop crawling into bed with us every night, he will not  be so quick to give me kisses and tell me he loves me, he will not want me to hold him and carry him, he will not want me to play at the park with him, instead of saying "I am not happy" when frustrated or upset.... he will just slam the door and give me the silent treatment, he will not want to help me with my hair and makeup or pick out what I should wear (which he really likes to do)... sometimes it is hard to remember, but I am trying to enjoy it all... all. I swear, just over the last month he has more independent than ever. I can already see three being the "I will do it all by myself" phase, and even that leaves me with mixed emotions. So grown up, and only three.